Cost of Living in Sweden: Average Living Cost Per Month

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Sweden, a Nordic gem renowned for its rich history, clean environment, and progressive social policies, has emerged as a popular destination for Indian students seeking a transformative educational experience. As of 2024, the number of Indian students enrolled in Swedish universities and colleges surpassed 2,000, reflecting the country’s growing appeal among those seeking a world-class education coupled with a high quality of life.

As of 2024, Stockholm, the capital city of Sweden, ranks 22nd worldwide, in terms of student view, affordability, and employer activity. While the cost of living in Sweden can be high, the Swedish government and universities offer various financial aid options and support services to help students manage their expenses.

Key Highlights

TopicImportant Points
Average Cost of Living in SwedenEstimated budget: INR 75,000 – INR 1L per month.
Cost of Living in StockholmEstimated monthly cost: INR 1L .
Cost of Living in GothenburgEstimated monthly cost: INR 90,000.
Cost of Studying in Sweden for Indian StudentsPublic university tuition fees: approximately INR 4L – INR 12L per year.
Scholarships to Reduce the Cost of Studying for International StudentsSwedish Institute Scholarships (up to INR 90,000 per month)
University-Specific Scholarships (approx. INR 70,000 per month)
Corporate Scholarships  (approx. INR 70,000 per month)
Bilateral Scholarships  (approx. INR 70,000 per month)
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Currency, Payment Methods, and Budgeting

The Swedish Krona (SEK) is the official currency of Sweden. Its exchange rate plays a crucial role in determining the affordability of living expenses in Sweden for international students. As of May 2024, 1 INR is equivalent to approximately 0.13 SEK, offering a relatively favourable exchange rate for Indian students.

Sweden is a highly digitised society, with cashless payments being the norm. International students can easily access various digital payment methods, including mobile wallets, contactless cards, and online banking apps. This digital payment adoption makes budgeting and managing expenses more streamlined for those unfamiliar with the local currency.

Cost of Living in Sweden (Accommodation)

Housing expenses often account for a significant portion of a student’s budget in Sweden. However, the country offers a range of accommodation options to suit various preferences and budgets. As of 2024, around 60% of students in Sweden choose to live in rented accommodation.

CityAverage Monthly Rent for 1BR Apartment (INR)
Stockholm (City Center)INR 1.2L
Stockholm (Outside City Center)INR 78,000
GothenburgINR 88,000
MalmöINR 73,000

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Cost of Living in Sweden: Average Living Cost Per Month

Cost of Living in Sweden: Student Accommodation

University-provided accommodation can significantly reduce the Sweden living cost per month for students. This is why approximately 40% of international students in Sweden prefer to stay on-campus or affiliated housing options.

UniversityType of AccommodationPrice Range (per month)
Lund UniversityCorridors, Student Housing ComplexesINR 22,400 – INR 40,000
Uppsala UniversityStudent Housing, Private RentalsINR 24,000 – INR 48,000
KTH Royal Institute of TechnologyStudent Housing, Private RentalsINR 32,000 – INR 56,000
Chalmers University of TechnologyResidential Halls, ApartmentsINR 28,000 – INR 44,000

Please note: Prices may vary depending on the specific accommodation type, amenities, and occupancy (single or shared).

Education Costs for International Students

Swedish universities consistently rank among the top institutions globally, with several universities featuring in the QS World University Rankings’ top 100 list, such as Lund University (85th), and KTH Royal Institute of Technology (73rd). Here’s an overview of typical education costs in Sweden.

Education LevelEstimated Annual Fees (INR)
Private Preschool/International SchoolINR 4L – INR 12L
Public University (Undergraduate)INR 4L – INR 8L
Public University (Postgraduate)INR 6L – INR 12L

Average Tuition Fees at Top 4 Universities in Sweden

Sweden is home to several world-renowned universities, offering high-quality education across various disciplines. As of 2024, over 2,000 Indian students were enrolled in Swedish universities. 

Here are the tuition fees for some top institutions.

University and QS World RankingTuition Fees (per year)
Lund University (Rank: 85)INR 5L – INR 8L
Uppsala University (Rank: 105)INR 5L – INR 8L
KTH Royal Institute of Technology (Rank: 73)INR 6L- INR 8L
Chalmers University of Technology (Rank: 129)INR 6L – INR 8L

Also Read: MBA in Sweden for Indian Students 2024: Fees & Colleges

Top 4 Scholarships to Reduce the Cost of Studying for International Students

To make higher education more accessible to international students, the Swedish government, universities, and various organisations offer a range of scholarships and financial aid opportunities. 

As of 2023, over 1,200 international students received scholarships to pursue their studies in Sweden.

ScholarshipAmountEligibility
Swedish Institute ScholarshipsUp to INR 90,000 per monthBased on academic merit, country of origin, and program of study
University-Specific ScholarshipsVaries (approximately INR 70,000 per month)Offered by individual universities, criteria vary
Corporate ScholarshipsVaries (approximately INR 70,000 per month)Sponsored by Swedish companies, often industry-specific
Bilateral ScholarshipsVaries (approximately INR 70,000 per month)Offered through partnerships between Sweden and other countries

Also Read: KTH Scholarship – Eligibility, Benefits, How to Apply!

Top 7 High-Paying Jobs That Breakeven Initial Investment in Studying

Sweden offers various employment opportunities for Indian students, allowing them to gain valuable work experience. However, it’s important to note that regulations and restrictions may vary based on the student’s visa status and the type of employment. Some of the top companies hiring in Sweden include Volvo, Ericsson, IKEA, Spotify, and H&M. The top 7 highest-paying jobs are listed below.

Job TitleAverage Annual Salary (INR)
DoctorINR 48L
Bank ManagerINR 85L
Chief Executive OfficerINR 90L
Chief Financial OfficerINR 77L
College ProfessorINR 35L
PilotINR 38L
Marketing DirectorINR 54L

Please note that these figures are approximate and can vary depending on factors such as the employer, industry, and the student’s qualifications and experience.

Cost of Living in Sweden (Utility Expenses)

Utility costs in Sweden can be relatively high, contributing to the overall cost of living. The average monthly utility bill for a small apartment, including electricity, heating, and internet, can reach up to INR 12,000. Sweden’s harsh winters necessitate higher heating costs, which can significantly impact utility expenses.

UtilityAverage Monthly Cost (INR)
ElectricityINR 2,400 – INR 4,000
HeatingINR 4,000 – INR 6,400
InternetINR 1,600 – INR 2,400
MobileINR 800 – INR 1,600
TotalINR 8,000 – INR 12,000

Cost of Living in Sweden (Transportation Costs)

Sweden boasts an efficient and extensive public transportation system, making it easy for students to explore cities and surrounding areas. A monthly public transport pass costs around INR 8,000, providing access to buses, trains, and the metro in major cities like Stockholm and Gothenburg.

TransportationMonthly Cost in INR
One-way Ticket (Local Transport)INR 326
Monthly Pass (Regular Price)INR 8,000
Taxi Start (Normal Tariff)INR 470
Taxi 1km (Normal Tariff)INR 230
Taxi 1 hour Waiting (Normal Tariff)INR 4,400
Gasoline (1 litre)INR 156

Cost of Living in Sweden for Indian Families

The cost of living for research students or married students is higher than that of single undergraduate students. As of 2024, a family of four in Sweden needs to earn around INR 5L per month to maintain a comfortable standard of living. The estimated monthly cost of living in Gothenburg and Stockholm are as follows.

  • The estimated monthly cost of living in Stockholm for a family of four: is INR 3L
  • The estimated monthly cost of living in Gothenburg for a family of four: is INR 2L

Please note: These estimates include costs for rent, groceries, utilities, and other living expenses in Sweden but may vary based on individual family circumstances and lifestyle choices. 

Cost of Living in Sweden Compared to India

Although the cost of living in Sweden can be a tad higher than the cost of living in India, it can be easily offset by scholarships and social welfare benefits. Besides, students who graduate from Sweden get very high-paying jobs (discussed later on in this guide), which breaks even the initial investment within 1-2 years. As of 2024, around 42,000 Indian citizens are currently residing in Sweden, accounting for a small but growing Indian community in the country. Here’s a quick comparison to illustrate the difference.

Expense CategoryAverage Cost of Living in Sweden per Month (INR)India (Estimated Monthly Average in INR)
Accommodation (1BR Apartment)INR 40,000 – INR 75,000INR 12,000 – INR 28,000
UtilitiesINR 8,000 – INR 12,000INR 1,500 – INR 3,500
TransportationINR 8,000INR 800 – INR 1,500
FoodINR 16,000 – INR 24,000INR 3,000 – INR 4,000

Please note: These are estimated figures, and actual costs may vary depending on individual lifestyles, spending habits, and city choices within each country.

Cost of Living in Sweden Compared to Other European Countries

Sweden’s cost of living is generally higher than many other European countries, but it is often balanced by the country’s high salaries, quality of life, and social welfare benefits. The Swedish government offers various financial support programs for residents, including housing allowances, child benefits, and subsidised healthcare and education. Here’s a comparison of the cost of living index and estimated monthly costs for a single person across various European cities.

CityCost of Living IndexEstimated Monthly Cost of Living in Sweden for a Single Person
Stockholm, Sweden68.8INR 1L
Copenhagen, Denmark79.0INR 1L
London, United Kingdom80.1INR 99,000
Berlin, Germany65.7INR 81,000
Paris, France75.4INR 1L

Please note: The estimated monthly cost of living in Sweden for a single person is a rough estimate based on the Cost of Living Index and is provided for comparison purposes only. Actual costs may vary depending on individual circumstances and lifestyle choices.

Cost of Living in Sweden (Food and Dining Expenses)

While Sweden is known for its high-quality and often organic food options, dining out can be expensive. However, students can find affordable alternatives by exploring local markets, grocery stores, and budget-friendly dining options.

Dining OptionEstimated cost (INR)
Meal, Inexpensive RestaurantINR 1,100
Meal for 2 People, Mid-range Restaurant, Three-courseINR 7,000
McMeal at McDonalds (or Equivalent Combo Meal)INR 800

Cost of Living in Sweden (Grocery Cost)

Groceries in Sweden can be relatively expensive, but shopping at local markets and discount supermarkets can help reduce costs. Here’s an overview of typical grocery prices.

ItemPrice in INR
Milk (regular), (1 litre)INR 122
Loaf of Fresh White Bread (500g)INR 229
Rice (white), (1kg)INR 304
Eggs (regular) (12)INR 338
Cheese (1kg)INR 877
Chicken Fillets (1kg)INR 970
Beef Round (1kg)INR 1,481
Apples (1kg)INR 258
Bananas (1kg)INR 204
Oranges (1kg)INR 258
Tomatoes (1kg)INR 368
Potatoes (1kg)INR 129
Onions (1kg)INR 150
Lettuce (1 head)INR 189
Water (1.5 litre bottle)INR 116

Part-time Jobs for International Students to Reduce Cost of Living in Sweden

Swedish universities and student organisations often assist in connecting students with suitable job opportunities. As of 2024, over 60% of international students in Sweden engage in part-time work to support themselves financially during their studies.

Here are some common part-time jobs for students in Sweden.

JobAverage Hourly Wage (INR)
Retail Sales AssistantINR 930 – INR 1160
Tutor/Teaching AssistantINR 1160 – INR 1550
Hospitality/Restaurant WorkerINR 930 – INR 1240
Office AssistantINR 1000 – INR 1400
Delivery ServicesINR 930 – INR 1160

Tips for International Students on Reducing the Cost of Living in Sweden

While Sweden is known for its high living standards, there are several strategies international students can employ to reduce their overall costs.

  • Monitor exchange rates and use cost-effective international money transfer services to maximise your budget
  • Explore student discounts and promotions offered by various establishments, including restaurants, museums, and transportation services
  • Consider shared accommodation options like student housing or co-living spaces to split rental costs
  • Cook meals at home and pack lunches to save on dining expenses
  • Utilise the extensive public transportation system and consider investing in a bicycle for shorter distances
  • Explore part-time job opportunities on campus or in the local community to supplement your income (you can work up to 20 hours per week  and the minimum weekly wage is estimated to be around INR 15,000)
  • Participate in student organisations and events that offer discounted or free activities and experiences

Summing Up 

While the living expenses in Sweden can be higher compared to many other countries, it is often offset by the high quality of life, excellent social welfare system, and numerous opportunities for personal and professional growth. Here are the key features of living in Sweden as covered in the blog. 

  • High standard of living and quality of life
  • Excellent education system with world-renowned universities
  • Progressive social welfare policies and benefits
  • Emphasis on sustainability and environmental consciousness
  • Vibrant cities with rich cultural experiences
  • Stunning natural landscapes and outdoor recreation opportunities
  • Ample part-time job opportunities for students
  • Efficient and eco-friendly public transportation system

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Q: What is the cost of living in Sweden for Indian students per month?

    A: The cost of living for international students in Sweden can vary considerably depending on factors such as the city, lifestyle choices, and accommodation type. Generally, students can expect to budget between INR 75,000 and INR 1L per month to cover expenses like accommodation, food, transportation, and other living costs.

  • Q: Is it possible to work while studying in Sweden as an international student?

    A: Yes, international students in Sweden are permitted to work part-time while pursuing their studies, subject to certain conditions and restrictions. The Swedish Migration Agency allows international students to work up to 20 hours per week during academic terms and full-time during breaks and holidays. Some popular part-time jobs are as follows.
    Tutoring: Average hourly pay is INR 2,335
    Customer Service Representative: Average hourly pay is INR 1,089
    Receptionist: Average hourly pay is INR 1,043
    Cashier: Average hourly pay is INR 1,011

  • Q: What is the minimum wage in Sweden, and how does it compare to the cost of living?

    A: Sweden does not have a legally mandated national minimum wage. Instead, wages are typically set through collective bargaining agreements between unions and employers. However, the effective minimum wage in Sweden is estimated to be around INR 60,000 per month. While this wage level is relatively high compared to many other countries, the cost of living in Stockholm and Gothenburg is also higher.

  • Q: Are there any specific visa requirements for international students in Sweden?

    A: Yes, international students in Sweden are required to obtain a residence permit for study purposes before arriving in the country. This permit is typically valid for the duration of the student’s educational program, and the application process involves providing documentation such as an admission letter from the Swedish university, proof of sufficient funds (minimum INR 80,000 for one month), and a valid passport. The application fee for a Swedish residence permit for studies is approximately INR 11,000.

  • Q: How does the average cost of living in Sweden compare to other popular study destinations in Europe?

    A: Sweden’s cost of living is generally higher than many other European countries, but it is often balanced by the country’s high salaries, quality of life, and social welfare benefits. For instance, while the estimated monthly cost of living in Sweden for a single person is around INR 1L, it is slightly lower than cities like Copenhagen (INR 1.1L) and Paris (INR 1.09L), but higher than Berlin (INR 81,000).

  • Q: What are some tips for budgeting and saving on the cost of living in Sweden?

    A: Here are some useful tips for budgeting and saving on the cost of living in Sweden.

    Opt for student housing or shared accommodation to reduce rental costs
    Cook meals at home and pack lunches to save on dining expenses
    Explore student discounts and promotions offered by various establishments
    Utilise the efficient public transportation system and consider investing in a bicycle for shorter distances
    Monitor exchange rates and use cost-effective international money transfer services
    Limit unnecessary expenses and prioritise essential living costs.

  • Q: How can international students open a bank account in Sweden?

    A: International students can open a bank account in Sweden by following these general steps.

    Choose a bank that offers accounts for non-residents or international students. Popular options include Swedbank, Nordea, and SEB
    Visit the bank branch with your valid passport, residence permit, and proof of address (rental agreement or utility bill)
    Provide any additional documents required by the bank, such as proof of enrollment or income
    Complete the account opening application form and provide your personal and contact details
    Make the minimum initial deposit required by the bank, which typically costs INR 2,000

  • Q: What are the healthcare options for international students in Sweden?

    A: Sweden offers a comprehensive healthcare system that provides high-quality medical services to its residents, including international students. Here are the main healthcare options.

    Public healthcare: International students can access the Swedish public healthcare system by paying an annual fee of around INR 8,000 – INR 12,000. This fee covers most healthcare services, including doctor visits, hospitalisation, and prescription medications.
    Private healthcare: Sweden also has a well-developed private healthcare sector, which can be more expensive (around INR 31,000 per year) but often offers shorter waiting times and additional amenities. Private health insurance plans can be purchased separately

  • Q: Are there any cultural considerations or customs to be aware of when living in Sweden?

    A: Sweden is a multicultural society with a rich cultural heritage and a strong emphasis on equality and respect. Here are some cultural considerations for international students.

    Punctuality is highly valued, and it’s important to be on time for appointments, meetings, and social gatherings
    Swedes generally value personal space and privacy, so it’s advisable to avoid overly familiar or intrusive behaviour
    Swedish society is highly egalitarian, with a focus on gender equality and respect for individual rights
    Sustainability and environmental consciousness are deeply ingrained in Swedish culture, and it’s important to be mindful of recycling and energy conservation practices
    Swedes often remove their shoes when entering someone’s home, so it’s a good idea to carry a pair of indoor slippers or socks.

  • Q: Is it possible to find vegetarian and vegan food options in Sweden?

    A: Yes, Sweden offers a variety of vegetarian and vegan food options, catering to different dietary preferences and lifestyles. Major cities like Stockholm and Gothenburg have a thriving vegetarian and vegan food scene, with numerous restaurants, cafes, and grocery stores offering plant-based options. Additionally, most Swedish supermarkets and grocery stores have dedicated sections for vegetarian and vegan products, making it easier for students to maintain their dietary choices.

  • Q: How many Indian students are currently enrolled at Swedish universities?

    A: As of 2024, over 2,000 Indian students were enrolled in various universities across Sweden. This number has been steadily increasing in recent years, reflecting Sweden’s growing appeal as a study destination for Indian students seeking high-quality education, a multicultural environment, and a unique cultural experience.

  • Q: What are the accommodation options for families and partners of international students in Sweden?

    A: While most university housing is geared towards single students, there are options available for international students who are accompanied by their families or partners. Many universities have a limited number of family accommodations, typically apartments or small houses, which can be applied for through the university’s housing office. However, these units are in high demand, so it’s advisable to apply as early as possible.


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Saket Kohli

An International Higher Ed professional with 7+ years of experience studying, working, and living across three geographies, currently on a mission to share his journey as an International Student.

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