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Hi everyone,

I'm a new member and am considering traveling to Sweden for a year of study abroad. I know this isn't technically expatriation, but I would like some advice and thought this would be the best place to turn, as what I've looked for thus far hasn't been especially helpful.

I'd be moving to a large city (by Swedish standards) but I have been told that I will find winter really hard, as I'm Australian and used to a fair bit of sun. I don't particularly like sunny or warm weather more than winter here, but obviously the abject lack of daylight in winter will be a pretty big difference.

I've also heard that it can be really hard fitting in in Sweden if you don't speak good Swedish- makes sense, but how accurate is this? Would it be worth me trying to become fairly proficient before I go, or picking up some basic skills now and taking a course when I get there instead?

My friends are telling me to make a more accessible or practical choice, like Germany (I speak some German, etc) but I would really love to take my year abroad in a Scandinavian country to see some of the country and culture and Sweden appeals to me most of all.

Insight, advice etc would be most appreciated- thank you :)
 

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If you can get admitted to a Swedish exchange program, chances are it will be one conducted in English (or else it will be a language program where you'll be learning Swedish). While it wouldn't hurt to try to pick up a bit of the language before you get there, you probably won't really learn the language to use it until you're in place and able to use it on a day to day basis.
Cheers,
Bev
 
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