The SBS Student Blog

Life as a student at Stockholm Business School


Call a Swede, update

Hej!

Remember I wrote about a campaign Call a Swede a while back? I thought I’d give you a little update on how Swedes have been answering their phone and how successful this tourism campaign has proven to be.

the-swedish-number

(source: Adweek)

Mind that the campaign was launched on the 6th of April so 128392 incoming calls in less than a month is, to say the least, very impressive.

So impressive that it won Direct Grand Prix and Cannes Lion this year (proof).

“At the end of the day, we’re people talking to people. And it’s really refreshing to see an idea and a campaign that unites 9.5 million brand ambassadors with the world through the most direct form of communication—which is speaking, talking.” –  Mark Tutssel, Direct jury president

I didn’t register as a Swede nor did I try calling the Swedish number, but someone else did:

Pewdiepie has also called a random Swede, but I will let you find the video on your own 🙂

Until next time,

Maria

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Accommodation in Stockholm?!

Hello everyone!
(especially those who are still reading this blog although it’s a middle of a summer)

It’s been a month since my last post. Apologies for that.

During that month I have had a unique opportunity to spend three days at a Google office in Wroclaw (Poland). But more about it some other time.

It is less than a month until the semester officially starts, so I want to devote my future posts to students starting their first semester at SBS – no matter if you are an exchange student, here for an entire programme or simply call yourself a student, I hope it will somehow will prove useful to you.

How to find accommodation.

Where to look? What areas? How much is too expensive? I am sure that you have received some general information from your international coordinators or the university itself on how to find a room or an apartment in Stockholm. Let’s make it clear: it is HARD. It is very hard to find a place but it’s not impossible.

My best and only tip today is to join groups on Facebook because a lot of students leave for an exchange semester/year and it is highly likely you will find a room/apartment in one of the student buildings in the city. So, go ahead and become member of the following groups:

I was feeling very ambitious when writing this post and pinned the buildings on the map, so you get a rough idea on where they are situated. I only chose to include the ones in the city or very close to it, but there are a lot of lovely areas outside of Stockholm.

Find the map here -> the map.

Hope you will find a place soon and if you already have – congrats!

Until next time,
Maria


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#tb Midsommar 2016 in Vaxholm

Hej everyone!

Walt wrote about the Midsummer traditions last week, I thought I would show you how I spent my Midsummer this year.

Unforunately, we don’t have any family traditions to celebrate this day at a summer house (which we, by the way, don’t have), so I have to improvise every single time. This year, a bunch of my classmates from the master programme are spending the summer in the city, so we decided to make this day somewhat special and do something fun together.

First on the agenda – a 40 minutes bus ride from Tekniska Högskolan to Vaxholm. Surely, you can also go there by boat, but why spend extra money on tickets if you have a perfectly functioning SL card).

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Boat to Vaxholm

Don’t be like us, come prepared! Bring some picnick-friendly food, blankets to sit on and an umbrella, because you never know when it may start raining. It is midsummer, after all.

Then we were patiently observing this for about 30-40 minutes:

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a bit to the right…

And then the madness started.

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traditional Midsummer dances

Ok, it was actually pretty adorable.

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When we had enough of freezing in the grass and watching people eat, as that’s what you do after the traditional festivities, we made our way to the best place I know in Vaxholm – Hembygdsgårdens cafe  for a Midsummer fika. A side note: the only thing you need to be consuming in Sweden during Summer are strawberries and whipped cream. Sometimes strawberries and milk, but never forget the strawberries.

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The rest of the day was spent exploring Vaxholm while waiting for the bus back to Stockholm and a bbq at a friend’s place. Pretty good Midsummer if you ask me!

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Swedish summer at its best

Maria

 


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Hejdå VT16.

It’s no news that Spring semester 2016 is coming to an end, but for some reason it’s way too easy to find a window spot in the university library. Where are you, people???

As much as I have been enjoying these past months (have you noticed correlation between temperature and amount of people in the city on weekday nights?), I can’t wait to Autumn as I’ll be moving to Paris, my most favourite city in the world, to do an exchange at SKEMA. For some reason, every time I mention studying in Paris to someone, I hear “Oh, are you going to Sorbonne?”… Has it happened to anyone else?

Anyway, back to my point. You know how you are in a new city and have a long list of places to visit, things to try etc, but somehow end up postponing it till the very end?
I took the liberty and composed a, surprise-surprise, list of things you MUST do before leaving Stockholm. That is, of course, if you have been here on exchange and are going home soon. Otherwise, hope this list inspires you to go and explore the city!

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Ivar Los park @ Södermalm

Here we go (in no particular order):

  1. Queue for an hour for a table at Flippin Burger.
  2. Complain about Systembolaget’s opening hours (every week, preferably).
  3. Eat focaccia at Prego in Kräftriket for lunch >3 days a week.
  4. Make as little eye contact on the bus/train as possible.
  5. Freak out when someone on the bus/train starts speaking to you.
  6. Get used to paying 60-70 kr for a beer (who am I kidding, we’ll never get used to it!).
  7. Realize that McDonalds has an app with cheeky discounts. (no shame)
  8. Have meatballs at Meatballs for the people in Södermalm.
  9. Visit Gröna Lund (Johnny Depp will be there next week!!!!!!!)
  10. Miss last train on a weekday and wait for that night bus (RIP Uberpop). 
  11. Learn the true meaning of “Jaha!” and “Jasså!”and start using it.
  12. Have a picnic on the top of Skinnarviksberget.
  13. Take advantage of “kaffe+bulle” for 15 kr at 7Eleven in Frescati.
  14. Become a master of finding events with free drinks/free food on FB.
  15. Or become friends with that person.
  16. Visit an office of a cool tech company (e.g. Spotify, King, Dice)
  17. Hear “Can I see your leg” for the first time and be totally confused (note: legitimation in Swedish = ID card).
  18. Post a photo of the “Slutstation” sign on FB. Don’t deny you’ve done it. 
  19. Be amazed with the insane 3G connection we have in the city.
  20. Never get a haircut because…expensive.
  21. Have the biggest kanelbulle of your life at Café Saturnus in Östermalm.
  22. Become addicted to Snapchat. Swedes love Snapchat (Source: me, 2016). 
  23. Follow me on Instagram -> @stockholm (#SelflessPromotion).

Jokes aside, I hope you have had the time of your life here in Stockholm and Stockholm Business School. Make sure you stay in touch with your friends because then you can travel the world to visit them and stay for free!

Maria

 


I have a confession.

It is that time of the year again.
Eurovision is back!

It unlikely that you have missed how the city has transformed to welcome the most hardcore fans that travelled across Europe to support their countries. Oh, excuse me, I forgot that Australia is also also participating in Eurovision this year.

I can’t say that I am particularly interested in the competition, but something has come across me.. I don’t know if it is my Swedishness that is overpowering my otherwise neutral attute toward Eurovision, or the fact that the entire city is finally alive and events take place every single day. I cannot even deny the fact that I am feeling particularly patriotic and get extremely excited whenever I see a Russian flag or Russian tourists in the city (And I normally dispise those. Not the flag, the tourists). And yes, I voted for Russia during the semi-finals yesterday.

Having said that, here comes my confession.

I am looking forward to watching the Eurovision Finals this Saturday. There, I said it.

You may love it or you may hate it, but you absolutely cannot hate the Stockholm vibe these days. It is alive, it is breathing and it is looking fabulous!

To honour my tradition of writing lists, here is a list of three Eurovision-related things you should not miss in the city!

  1. City Skyliner
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photo source: visitstockholm.com

One of the best views of central Stockholm is yours for 100 kr. Go to Kungsträdgården, queue a little bit and prepare to be amazed. My plan is to wait until Eurovision is over and most of the tourists have left the city to enjoy a queue-free experience.

2. Brunkebergstunneln

The tunnel between Östermalm and Hötorget has become a singing tunnel! That’s how it is explained in the official press release:

The Singing tunnel recognizes the tone you sing and then returns the sound with a similar voice. When you sing a few notes, an additional voice enters, singing back notes that have been sung before. The visitor and the tunnel sing in two voices.

It’s really hard to explain the experience with words, so go check it out! I was honestly standing there for 10 minutes completely mesmerized.

3. Musical crosswalks

This has got to be my favourite thing of all. When the traffic light is red, it plays Loreen’s song “Euphoria”. When the light is green, you hear “Heroes” by last year’s winner Måns Zelmerlöw. Isn’t it genious????

Hope you are enjoying May and don’t forget to allow yourself take short breaks between those assignments!

Maria

 


Case: Valborg in Uppsala

Hej!

You may or may not not have heard of a celebration called Valborg, or Walpurgis Night as it is called in English. But chances are that you are going to Uppsala today or tomorrow with a bunch of friends to celebrate something.

Let’s start with the definitions. Walpurghisnacht is the eve of the feast day of Saint Walpurga, an 8-th century abbess in Francia (credit: Wikipedia). In Sweden, however, this tradition has got very little to do with religion and much more with drinking celebrating the beginning of Spring. And no wonder, it is the 29 of April and Spring has barely made it to Sweden.

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Credit: savateev.com

Back to 2016. If you are going all in, you have already planned your days and bought a gästleg which is required if you want to visit some of the student nations, a.k.a nationer. Well done!

My friend from France is visiting this weekend, so we are going to Uppsala tomorrow morning because I am a good host (hehe) and…well, how often do you find yourself in a foreign country where there is a day when the entire city is consuming alcohol from early morning to early night? I am personally not a big fan of this day, but it’s definitely fun to hang out with a bunch of friends in a student city and hope that it doesn’t start raining all of the sudden (although, according to yr.no it will be relatively sunny the entire day. fingers crossed..).

So, what not to miss in Uppsala during Valborg. 

  1. Champagne breakfast at 8 am. Because, why on Earth will you not drink champagne with your breakfast?
  2. Don’t go hard on that champagne, because it’s not even 10 am by the time you are done with the most important meal of the day. You next task is to (I automatically assume you are the responsible one in your group) try and gather everyone in one piece and get to the city centre for The River Rafting  Event, or Forsränningen. It is the highlight of Valborg in my opinion, so go check it out (it starts at 10 am!)

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    /photo taken from here

  3. The rest of the day is sort of up to you, but I will most likely be at some park trying to find my classmates.
  4. LAST BUT NOT LEAST. Do not, I repeat, DO NOT try catching the last SJ train from Uppsala. I tried to do it a couple of years ago, and the train that arrived at the station was so small that we didn’t make it on the train and had to wait for a night bus to Arlanda, then another one from Arlanda to Stockholm.. I think I got home sometime after 5 am that day. I don’t recommend that.

Have a lovely Valborg and do not forget to bring an external charger for your phone!

Maria 


Call a Swede.

Good day!

As I was scrolling through Facebook this morning, I stumbled across a very interesting (read: weird) article published in The Local (which I later found even on Mashable). Let’s have a look at it together.

So basically, you call a magical number – +46 771 793 336 – and you get an answer from “a random Swede”, i.e. a person from Sweden who has signed up for this project via an app.

Why do they do this, you ask? Sweden’s tourist assiciation wants to give Swedish people a possibility to tell their story, share their personal views on certain subjects and even give tips on where to eat and what to see.

I have three questions.

  1. Do people still answer phone calls from unknown numbers?
  2. How is this project going to “promote Sweden abroad”?
  3. Doesn’t this go against about everything you know (or you think you know) about Swedish people?

Let me explain what I mean with the help of some examples from this fantastic tumblr page.

So how will a Swede react when getting a call from a complete stranger?.. We can only speculate, but I think I made my point here more or less.

Despite everything, if you do not currently live in Sweden and would really love to move here to study, I really encourage you to call this number and get your questions answered. Who knows, you may even end up talking to a student at SBS!

Maria

PS. I hope this post didn’t offend anyone as it was most definitely not my intention.
PPS. Swedes are awesome after all.