Spring is here

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Spring and Sakura

It’s May and Linköping is in full bloom! While I remember it was snowing on 10th April. Crazy, isn’t it? My friends and I just had a BBQ over the weekend, spent the entire day under the sun, happy, burnt, and well fed. Beautiful flowers and fruits are growing everywhere. Early morning, the birds are chirping. It feels like the face of the earth has changed. Everyone seems to be spending more time out in open, shining bright with smiles, taking vitamin D under the sun, lying down in the parks with beers, cycling around, or eating outside. It is super lively, especially in downtown. Even though it is hot and sunny, it gets pretty cold and windy too soon in the evening. I always try to carry my jacket just in case. Anyhow, I am loving the summers.

P.S. Try to buy a fan soon! Last year the stores ran out of stock and the temperatures rose to 31’C

           

 

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Concert in Linkoping

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Concert in Linköping

I attended a concert at Palaset in Linköping. There were two local Swedish bands that performed: Phat Stacks & Månsson. I have Månssons songs available on Spotify Phat Stacks doesn’t seem to have an online presence.

Phat Stacks took the evening to the Funkrymden Palace with dance-friendly and fun songs. The mother ship is composed of Funkkapten Tor Sandell with members from among others the Neo-Soul band Certainly and the Beyoncé show “We Run the World”. Phat Stacks played a unique set that mixes self-composed songs with interpretations of fun classics and electronic elements.In autumn 2018, Månsson debuted with the album “Out of My Mind”. The Linköping public got the chance to see Månsson live with bands for the first time. With the feet of the American West Coast tradition such as Toto or Steely Dan and with a touch of soul, jazz and gospel, a really swinging concert.

 

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Trip to Gothenburg

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Highlights of my one day trip to Gothenburg

I thought, one day is not enough to know anything about a city but I was wrong. And you’ll know why. My friend and I decided to take a one-day trip to Gothenburg(Göteborg) with ISA (International Student Association). Our exams had just gotten over and we didn’t have a better excuse to hop on with everyone. The trip was divided into two halves, the first half we walked and explored the city and the second half we spent going crazy at Liseberg. A beautiful archipelago, Sweden’s second largest city – Gothenburg.

Here we go:

    1. We started our walk from the Gothenburg Museum of Art at Götaplatsen. It is free for everyone under the age of 25 and otherwise costs 40 SEK. You can click on the link above to see the timings. A must visit for an aesthete. Here we saw the most famous landmark of Gothenburg – Poseidon, the sea God. It is situated at the top of the main boulevard Avenyn, in front of the museum at Götaplatsen square. This statue was constructed for the World Fair in 1923. The funny thing is a fountain was placed before the Poseidon’s statue at the same position and then 10 years later the Poseidon’s statue was placed in between and inaugurated.

    2. Göteborgsoperan – Gothenburg Opera house at Lilla Bommen. A 1301 seater which has a room for about 100 musicians. It has an architecture worth admiring.

    3. Göta älv – Göta River is a 93km long river that flows on the western coast of  Sweden.

    4. The Cathedral Gothenburg – This is one of the city’s first buildings and one of the first church in Gothenburg. We couldn’t get to see the inner interiors as it was a holiday.

    5.  Haga Nygatan – A street for Fika Paradise! It is famous for the biggest KannelBullar (sweet cinnamon buns).

    6. Skansen Krona – A small walk to see the city from a viewpoint.

    7.  Trams – A glimpse of trams moving around the city.

    8. Liseberg –  The most visited amusement park in Scandinavia. Opened in 1923, lies in the heart of Gothenburg. If you love roller coasters and an adrenaline rush, this is the place for you.


    9. The Gothenburg Wheel – A 200 ft. (60 meters) high wheel in Liseberg from which you can see the entire Gothenburg. The view is a delight, both in morning and night.


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How to use the Swedish Postal Service

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All you need to know about the Swedish Postal Service

When one moves to a new country there are a lot of things that are required to learn about that new place. Some of the things are done differently and some similarly.  One such thing is how to use the postal service. To be honest, it was one of the easiest experience here in Sweden, which was quite different than in my home country. In 2009, the Swedish postal service and the Danish postal service,  Posten AB and Post Danmark respectively merged as one known as PostNord now, which is widely available for use in the whole Nordic region.

Basic Information:

  1. Visit the nearest service point. Every point has its own timings.
  2. Buy stamp and envelope (or thick packet for protection of contents) according to the size and weight of the items/letter being posted. Everything is available at these points from stamps, envelopes to big packaging boxes.
  3. Make sure the packaging is good to protect your contents.
  4. If it is not a valuable item (anything but money related) you can opt for a normal post and if it is something valuable (you will have to declare the amount) you should opt for the tracked and registered mail option.
  5. Pay the money and send.
  6. All prices and number of stamps required – Rate-card. Delivery timings can be calculated here.

Domestic Letter:

  1. Usually takes 2 working days to reach after dropping off.
  2. It can weigh up to 2 kgs
  3. Post it to any mailbox.

If it is an International letter just mark the envelope by hand with the text “Prioritaire” or use their special sticker label.

Receiving a letter:

The letter will come in your mailbox. But if it is a big parcel or a box, a slip will be sent to your mailbox and you will have to take that slip to PostNord and they will give you your package. It is as simple as that.

Things you cannot send:

All goods and substances classified or marked as dangerous cannot and must not be sent like narcotics, corrosives, weapons, and etc. You as a sender is responsible for the contents you post. You can find the list on their page.

Send a letter to your friend and let me know how it turned out!
Also, don’t forget to write the address, both return, and destination.

Image Source: PostNord Image/media bank

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Swedish Personal Number and ID

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How to get your Swedish Personal Number and Identity Card

Swedish Identity Number is legally known as personnummer is to identify people living in Sweden. The Swedish Personal Identity is a 10-digit number starting with your date of birth. The number is in the format: YYMMDD-XXXX. If you were born on 20th April 1988 then the number could look something like this 880420-9999

One needs to obtain a Swedish Identity Number as a student if the student is going to study more than 1 year(at least 12 months) in Sweden. Thus, you need to have a valid resident permit for 1 year. Or students from inside the EU/EEA who are able to prove that they intend to stay in Sweden for at least 12 months.

A personal number can be useful for working legally even while studying, opening a bank account, getting the ID card, getting into the health care system, getting a driver’s license etc.

All of the students studying a two-year degree course here in Sweden need to apply for Swedish Identity number at the Tax Agency called Skatteverket.

Address for the Tax Agency Office Skatteverket-

Things you must bring to the tax agency for issuing the personal number

  • Valid passport
  • Resident Permit
  • Admission letter Notification Results / Proof of enrolment
  • Information for your address/apartment you are living in Sweden
  • (If applicable) Documents proving marital status (original or a certified copy)
  • (If applicable) Birth certificates for children (original or certified copy)

What to do?

  • Visit Skatteverket during their open hours. There is no need for any prior appointment
  • When you reach there, there might or not be a waiting line but when your turn comes to tell the person in charge that you are here to apply for a Swedish Personal Number as a foreign student.
  • You will be either given a hard copy of the form or a computer to fill the soft copy. You would need to fill basic personal information. After submission, you will be assigned a waiting number to see the customer service person.
  • On your turn, you will be asked to handout your passport, Notification Results, Resident Permit, and bank statement(maybe) to take a photocopy of these. This is it for the personal number. You will receive the personal number via post.
  • Then you will be asked if you want an ID card for opening your bank account. If you say yes you will be given an invoice for your ID card. For this, you have to pay 400 SEK but you can do this once you receive your Personal Number.
  • Once you get your personal number, which will come via post to the address you mentioned, you can go to the Forex bank with the invoice you received from Skatteverket to pay for the ID card. And take the invoice of payment as proof from Forex bank. Remember that they charge 50 SEK as transferring or handling charges.
  • Next, you need to make an online appointment at Skatteverket to give your biometrics.
  • Visit Skatteverket again on your booked date, show them the invoice you got from Forex bank. They will take your biometrics. You need to wait for your Swedish ID card for approximately 2 weeks as they do their process. You will receive a message for when it is ready and then you need to go and get it from Skatteverket.

Hope this helps!

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