If you are thinking of doing an internship abroad, then Sweden is one of the best countries to consider.
That is because Sweden is very welcoming towards young students and trainees.
By moving to Sweden for your internship, you will have the chance to acquire expertise in a working environment with strong egalitarian values.
Also, you will get to be a part of an international hub of professionals as well as use cutting edge technology and advanced tools.
To be able to intern in Sweden though, you will have to get a permit if you’re not an EU or Nordic citizen.
In this article, you will get to learn everything about internships in Sweden.
You will get tips on how to find internships in Sweden as well as how to get accommodation and visa.
Also, this article will expose you to the best industries for internship in Sweden as well as internship placement organisations.
There many more frequently asked questions about internships in Sweden that you will find in this article.
So, if you are ready for an internship in Sweden, continue reading until the end.
What you should know about getting an internship in Sweden
Getting an internship in Sweden is easier if you are an EU or Nordic national.
That’s because you do not require a visa or permit to perform an internship in Sweden.
Nevertheless, an internship does not give you the right of residence for more than 3 months (like finding a job or studying in Sweden does).
If you want to get a right of residence, then you will have to register to the Swedish Tax Agency as someone who is ‘looking for work’.
By doing so, you will get the right to stay for 6 months.
If your internship lasts longer than that and is an unpaid one, you will have to register as a ‘self-sufficient person’.
Also, you have to provide proof that you have enough funds to support you for one year in Sweden.
This amount should be around 150,000 SEK which is equivalent to about $18,000.
If you are a third-country national, getting an internship in Sweden is more likely to happen through an international exchange programme.
Organisations such as AIESEC, IAESTE, JUF and SACCUSA) or an international agreement are your best bet.
Sweden currently has such agreements with countries such as the USA and Canada, as well as China (for young managers).
In all these cases, the organisation or programme will submit the application for the internship on your behalf.
If you secure an independent internship though, you will have to apply for a permit by yourself and pay the relevant fees.
How to find an internship in Sweden
There are several ways to find an internship in Sweden.
You may choose to search in your university, do it alone or even use the service of internship partners.
Although, the easiest way to find an internship in Sweden is through your university if you are a student.
Universities career services can help you find a placement that suits your qualifications.
Interestingly, most companies themselves contact such services in order to recruit new talents.
Also, you can check with your university alumni body to see if anyone has a link that will help you get an internship in Sweden.
If you are not a student, then you contact companies that interest you directly.
Start by checking out for any internship programmes on their websites.
Feel free to send them spontaneous applications as well.
Send to as many companies as possible.
You may get lucky, as many local companies are open to individual internships even if they are not part of a broader programme.
Tips for finding internships in Sweden
To help you increase your chances of getting an internship in Sweden, here are some tips to implement immediately.
1. Start your internship application early
The earlier, the better.
Some companies recruit interns a year in advance.
So, to increase your chances of getting an internship, you have to submit your application early enough.
Also, this will give you enough time to properly prepare for your internship interview.
2. Create a killer CV
Internship applications are almost like job applications.
As a result, you will most likely be needing a CV during your application.
In order to get an internship in Sweden, you need a CV that stands out.
Don’t just write generic CVs, rather be specific on the position you want.
Ensure that you send a different CV that is uniquely formatted for each company.
It is important to research about the company to help you write a better CV for your application.
3. Update your LinkedIn profile
Most employers always look at your LinkedIn profile to learn more about you.
In case you don’t know, your LinkedIn profile is another form of CV for you.
So, you must do well to fill all the necessary details in your profile.
Make sure to update your experience and abilities.
That way, employers can better assess you and confirm your claims in your application.
4. Contact your university’s career centre
This has already been explained, but for emphasis, this is a good way to get an internship in Sweden.
Your university’s career centre can help you gain access to those companies that accept international students.
Take advantage of this opportunity and get a good internship position for yourself.
5. Email companies directly
The Internet is open to everyone for easy access.
There are typically no restrictions.
At the same time, companies have websites and you can easily find emails of top management members of a company.
All you have to do is to check on the company website or LinkedIn for a valuable email address of someone working in the company.
After that, send an introduction mail and then attach your CV as well as other necessary documents.
In some cases, the company may have a career section of their website.
Ensure that you read that part very well and supply only the required details.
6. Network and build relationships
This point cannot be overemphasized.
It still remains a known fact in our present world that the more people you know, the more favours you can receive.
You need people at every point in your career.
Therefore, building relationships and networking with experts in your industry will help you.
The best place to find these people is in industry events.
Always be on the look out for the next industry event happening near you and then jump on the opportunity.
How to find accommodation & visas
Most often, the organizations that handle training/internship placements will help interns find accommodation and even arrange it for them.
Interns or trainees can also search for rental flats on the open market, but student housing is the more affordable option.
Monthly rent will vary depending on location, size, and type.
However, the average student accommodation can range from $400-$800 per room.
Residence permit regulations for internships vary based on your country of citizenship and internship programme.
Most Non-EU citizens will have to show proof of a paid employment offer prior to their arrival in Sweden.
Interns will need to apply for a work permit or a residence permit (for stays over three months).
Most of the time, your organization will help you arrange the visa details, but it’s always ideal to double-check with them first.
Will I have access to healthcare services as an intern in Sweden?
Your health is very important, especially when you are a long way from home.
But the challenge is that health care in Sweden is rather expensive.
However, Swedish nationals are entitled to a particularly efficient social security system which is mainly financed by taxes.
Indeed, tax rates are quite high in the country.
Since you won’t be paying taxes though (as you won’t have a salary), you also won’t have access to Swedish healthcare.
Therefore, you need to subscribe to private health insurance before travelling to Sweden.
You can also inquire whether you will be covered by your home country’s social security system during your stay.
Make sure, however, that your insurance will provide coverage in Sweden.
European Union, EEA and Swiss nationals who have registered with their home country’s social security system and who have a European Health Insurance Card are eligible for basic health care in Sweden.
Nationals coming from non-European countries for a more than a year’s internship period in Sweden are eligible for the same health care as Swedish nationals, provided they have registered with the Swedish Tax Agency.
However, coverage is not provided in the case of illness.
If you are moving to Sweden for a less-than-a-year internship period, then you will not be eligible for the same facilities.
What is the estimated cost of living in Sweden as an intern?
If Sweden’s high standard of living scares you, then you don’t need to fear anymore.
That’s because most internships or traineeships in Sweden are paid.
Interns will receive a salary to cover their cost of living especially if the internship takes place via a placement programme for higher education.
Students could be entitled to a living allowance that covers food, accommodation, and travel.
Food can be expensive with street options starting at $3 and restaurant meals averaging $20.
It’s best for you to grocery shop each week and also prepare your own meals to save even further.
Buying a MetroCard will be the best mode of transportation as they include busses, trams, subways, and boats.
Prices vary for each region so be sure to inquire.
What are the best cities in Sweden for an internship?
Sweden is made up of 200,000+ islands and is located in Northern Europe alongside Norway and Finland.
Modern Sweden has one of the highest living standards in the world along with one of the longest life expectancies amongst its citizens.
Which means, interning in Sweden may just give you a few extra years on this planet.
If you plan to do your internship in Sweden, here are some of the best cities to check-in.
Stockholm is one of the best cities for an internship in Sweden.
This city is also known as the “Venice of the North.”
Stockholm is a city built around water with 12 islands and 42 bridges.
Reigning as Sweden’s capital, this city is known for its breathtaking natural scenery, royal architecture, and Swedish pop with a dash of hipster culture.
Also nicknamed as the well-earned “Capital of Scandinavia,” Stockholm is equipped with trendy clubs and ethnic diversity.
It also features a wholesome lifestyle that encourages city bike systems as well as healthy meals.
Norrmalm and Kista are the districts in Stockholm where innovation and an urban lifestyle thrive, making them ideal for internships.
Walking through this dynamic cityscape, you may even notice the refreshing effects of paternity leave as men dominate the sidewalks with their babies and take-out coffee.
This city is also referred to as “little London” by the locals.
In addition, this is Sweden’s second-largest city that boasts of Michelin-star restaurants, buzzing cafe culture, fresh seafood, and serves as the birthplace of Volvo.
Gothenburg’s enviable portfolio of scuzzy beer dens and under the radar hangouts are partly due to the central university located in town.
The city’s toy-town charm and an abundant number of parks allow visitors to escape the hectic tourist crowds in Stockholm at a lower cost.
Its flourishing contemporary art scene and heavy metal industry will be perfect for interns looking to gain experience in the arts and construction.
What industries in Sweden offer internship opportunities?
Sweden offers multiple internships that will make your resume exceptional.
From arts and craft to helping to discover the next scientific breakthrough, anything is possible in Sweden.
Below are some of the most vibrant industries in Sweden where you can get an internship;
Sweden is topnotch when it comes to technology.
For instance, where in the world would we be (quite literally) without the Global Position System (GPS).
Or how would 187/195 countries measure their temperature without the Celsius Scale?
We have to thank the Swedes for revolutionizing many initiatives that have become critical in today’s age.
Internships in Sweden can vary from automotive and transportation to sustainable green technology movements.
Sweden produces about 40 per cent of its own power, which has resulted in billion-dollar revenues and countless job opportunities.
Major companies like General Electric and Volvo are waiting for driven interns like yourself.
The next industry to check-in for internships in Sweden is the communications industry.
Firstly, we have to thank L.M Ericsson for making the telephone handset a reality back in the late 1800s.
He is a Swede whose work contributed to a major innovation in telecommunications.
This also caused the company, Ericsson to become a forefront in communications technology.
Communication internships in Sweden will allow you to learn more about the country’s knowledge-based economy, which emphasizes human resources.
Marketing communication interns are also wanted for Swedish-retailers H&M and IKEA.
So, you see, there is always an internship position for all interns in Sweden.
What organisations offer internships placements in Sweden?
Interning in Sweden requires a huge cost.
Except you have that huge amount to spend, then you need organisations that provide internship placements in Sweden.
Here are the top organisations to start with;
- AIESEC organises internship placements in Sweden. Visit your home country’s AIESEC site to learn about the application process.
- IAESTE arranges internships in engineering, natural sciences and other technical fields. Contact your home country’s local IAESTE committee for more info.
- Are you a Law student or young lawyer? You can take part in trainee exchanges organised by the European Law Students Association, ELSA.
- Are you a medical student? You should check out the trainee exchanges organised by IFMSA, the International Federation of Medical Students Associations.
Doing an internship in Sweden is one sure way of expanding your knowledge and experienc e in your field of study.
So, it is important for you to maximize whatever opportunity you get to intern in Sweden.
Enjoy the rich culture of the people and explore as much as you can.
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