Survival Kit – By Jackson Kinyanjui

New and old students planning to come to study in Sweden Universities; to make your stay as comfortable as possible below are the 10 essential survival kits by me the Time traveler and Sunset chaser you need to have before and after coming to Sweden (Not arranged in any order of importance)

1. Documents to have
This serves as an identification card for you to transact some of the required transactions such as paying rent or sending money via western union.

Academic papers
Have all you papers with you and kept safely you may need to produce them in case of verification or job requirement

Residence permit card
This you will get before coming to Sweden from the migration office in your country and this together with your passport will help you to board an airplane.

Fee statement
If you are a scholarship student then you don’t need to bother yourself with this, but for the fee paying students you need to make sure you have paid atleast your first semester fees to be allowed entry into Sweden as part of migration rules and campus admission.

2. Clothing and shoes

Sweden can get quite cold, dressing for the weather is very important. All the necessary clothing can of course be bought in Sweden, but if you already own some good winter clothes, it can be wise to bring them.

Winter clothes:
– woolen socks and coats
– gloves
– good winter shoes
– skin tights

3. Tech stuff
(check point 8 where to buy all this stuff and more)
Mobile phone and a mobile number
You need to have a good smart phone with WiFi enabled and a mobile number that will work in Europe. Lycamobile offers very cheap UK and international calls to Asia, Africa, Europe and America. Make sure you have Google maps as this will make your movement easier from point a to b.

Laptop or tablet
A good working laptop or tablet is good as this will make your work easier as internet connectivity is essential. If you cannot afford one don’t worry as the universities have well equipped computer labs and so you will have access to them.

L.A.N cable or internet cable and a Router
Your will also need to buy a router and the router to be functional you will need a L.A.N cable to connect to it, if you are lucky some rooms have the L.A.N cable.

Two pin plug for the European plug
make sure to have a plug that will fit well with the European sockets present in Sweden. This plugs can be bought as well here but if you have one come with it.

4. Personal/coordination number and Bank account

A personal or coordination number is a tax number which you will get from the skatteverket (check point 8) or Tax office. To get this you need to carry your passport, residence permit card and university letter of acceptance.
Opening a bank account is important or if you have one its okay as this bank account number will be important if you are planning to work part time to get paid through. To open a bank account, you need your passport, Swedish ID and university letter of acceptance. You need a bank account and a tax number if you are planning to work in Student nation.

5. A registered nation and nation card

Currently we have 13 student nations in Uppsala and among them my Nation is V-dala Nation. ( The reasons may vary with people but to me it is the best since it is student friendly, holds awesome parties, dinners and has a lot of part time jobs for students. All you need is to visit the nation and get registered as a nations member and a wait for your nations ID card.
This card will allow you access to any nation, so you need to have a student’s nation card from any of the 13 nations to be able to visit any of the nations. The cost of registering for the nations card vary from one nation to the other as from 200 to 300 kroners.

6. Bicycle or bus card

A bicycle is the common means of transport in Uppsala as opposed to the bus. A bus card costs around 500 kroners per month while a second hand bicycle will cost less than 1000 kroners and it will serve you for up to 3 years or more with minimal service required. Go to point 8 for sights to follow to get second hand bicycles or a bus card. Always check by test driving your bike before buying. If you decide to buy a bike remember to have a good lock, back and front lights. Finally remember to read the rules regarding road usage by bikers as hefty fines can be charged upon you if caught using a faulty bike on the roads of up to 500 to 1000 kroners by police.

7. Housing facilities

Housing in Sweden for students is the hardest part if you don’t plan for it in advance. However Uppsala University offers housing to fee-paying Master’s, Bachelor’s students and most exchange students.
So you need to make proper arrangement for housing and if you plan to have your own arrangement on housing you can check housing links on Facebook (point 8).
The rent for housing from one estate location to the other with the lowest ranging as from (3000-5500 kroners). You can also look at the Facebook links in point 8 where people usually let out apartments which are fairly cheap.
Every housing facility has its own terms of contract, take time to read though as they contain details from the time required to pay your rent and issuing of vacation notice.

8. Website and Facebook links

Bus card:

Flea markets for Second hand clothes and stuff:

Electronic stuff:

Buying a bike and other stuffs:
Facebook: Buy & Sell in Uppsala
Facebook: sell/buy/give away
Facebook: Buy and Sell items

Private Housing:
Uppsala University: Accomodation
Facebook: Uppsala Housing
Facebook: Uppsala Housing (2)

Details on Student nations:
Uppsala University: The student nations

Tax agency:
The Swedish tax agency

Part time jobs at Student Nations:
Gotlands Nation
Gästrike-Hälsinge nation
Göteborgs nation
Kalmar nation
Norrlands nation
Smålands nation
Stockholms nation
Södermanlands-Nerikes nation
Uplands nation
Värmlands nation
Västgöta nation
Västmanlands-Dala nation
Östgöta nation

9. Places to shop

There are a lot of places to shop in Sweden but if you are looking for second hand stuff that are really nice from clothes, shoes and electronics you can go to the open market in centrum and some of the red cross centers (check point 8). Remember to have with you some essentials like stationery and other bathroom essentials if you have room to carry them.

10. University login account

A university login account is the most important as this will ensure that you register for courses, see you schedule for studies and results regarding courses will be posted here. This is a must to ensure your smooth flow in University life. Get in touch with the administration of your campus to get your account login details or check the university website for more details.

“change is difficult but often essential to survival”



  1. arthur

    very helpful information. is Kenyan food readily available.what the staple food?

  2. Md. Al-Amin

    Well said “change is difficult but often essential to survival”
    It’s really very helpful information for me. Thank You.

  3. Hilarie

    Excellent article. Thank you for the links to resources!

  4. Macdonald Joshua

    Such a good story I have recently read! I like such articles
    which worth reading them twice. it is packed with practical information on the subject, just like this Thanks a thousand to the author for such an incredible piece!

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