Getting settled in Uppsala

Arriving for the first time in another country is always stressful as one is not familiar with most of the things you need to know about. Here is a to-do list that will help you get organised and settled in Uppsala directly after the formal registration.

  1. Housing: Thousands of new students move to Uppsala to begin their studies each year, and as a result, finding accommodation can be very challenging. We advise you to follow the University University recommendations. Note that fee-paying master students are offered accommodation (for a maximum of 22 months beginning the month of August). 
  2. Registration document: After having formally registered, you will receive a registration letter from the Study Counsellor. You will need it to open a bank account. 
  3. University access card & copy card: After having formally registered, go to the info desk in the new building at Ångstrom Laboratory with a Swedish sign "Campuskort och Nycklar".  Report to the desk that you are a newly registered student and ask for an access card. You should also be given instructions as to how to activate it.
  4. Personal number (personnummer): You have to get a personal number for you would need it for virtually everything. You can't do without it! Go to the Swedish tax office (Skatteverket) at Kungsängsvägen 31C and bring your registration document, a copy of your passport, proof of your health insurance, and a self-signed document that you can support yourself during your studies. Better also bring your housing contract in order to fill in your apartment number - the more information you can provide them, the faster they will get your personal number.
  5. Bank account: Go to a bank of your choice (there is one with internet banking in English, ask at the introductory student fair) and bring your document that states your personal number, registration document, housing contract, and your passport. It may be possible to open a bank account with f documents but it totally depends on the employee, no bank seems to have a clear policy on that.
  6. Student nation card: get a temporary nation card during the introductory student fair in the main building. After having decided on a nation, take your admission paper or your registration document and your passport/ID and go to that nation during its opening hours. Notice that it is not compulsory to join a “Nation” or the student union, but they are an important meeting point with study rooms, cheap pubs, and many other activities.
  7. After having completed the above steps you are officially settled in Uppsala.
  8. Cost of living & work in Sweden - check out the page Financial Matters.
  9. Getting about in Uppsala
  • The Welcome Reception during The Orientation Week is nice a event to go to. You’ll get a general idea about Uppsala’s student life and the Nations –which will most certainly become part of your daily life in Uppsala. 

  • Get a bike! Everyone will tell you that. A bicycle is both healthy and environmentally friendly. There are many bike shops and even a free washing station for bikes. The most popular web page for second-hands, including bikes and everything you need to start your life in Uppsala is

    If you live far away and you feel like taking the bus, or you are just not a bike person, get a monthly pass for 620 SEK (student pass). It is not cheap but a single ticket costs 30 SEK on board, so your monthly pass will save you lots of money. To get a monthly pass go to the closest, Pressbyrån, ICA supermarket, or to the UL Center (located at Uppsala Central Station). Always bring your ID card/Passport plus your Student/Nation card with you, in case bus inspectors ask to check your ticket. 

  • Do you need to learn Swedish? Probably not. But it would be good.

    In Sweden, municipalities organise SFI courses (Swedish For Immigrants courses). You can take Basic Swedish courses at the Department of Scandinavian Languages as well.

  • Free time. 

    There is a lot going on in Uppsala, so you won’t get bored. But, the one thing you should absolutely do when you are here is to ENJOY NATURE - Uppsala has some great nature reserves and forests close by, with cabins to stay overnight for free and bbq areas.

    The love story between Swedes and nature is known to anyone. Did you know about something called Allemansrätten? This is Sweden’s constitutionally guaranteed right of public access, which provides everyone with the right of roaming the countryside in Sweden in perfect peace and quiet without someone saying: “get off my land”, unless you stomp all over someone’s back garden or trample all over a farmer’s cultivated field. You rely on it whenever you go out in the Swedish countryside – whether it is to take a walk, go kayaking, pick mushrooms, climb a mountain or just sit down on a rock to think. Isn’t this the greatest thing ever? Don’t miss out on the wonderful outdoor experiences that you can have in Uppsala, and if you want some suggestions JUST ASK!

    IF YOU ARE NEW TO SWEDEN, CHECK THIS OUT: It’s the official site of Sweden with lots of cool stuff to read!

Last modified: 2023-07-18