people at the street between commercial buildings
photo of brown high-rise building
aurora borealis over body of water during nighttime

Is Sweden Safe?

Sweden is generally a safe destination for travelers, with low crime rates and minimal risk of terrorism. However, be cautious of petty crimes like pickpocketing in crowded areas. Civil unrest occasionally occurs, so monitor local news. Sweden has excellent healthcare facilities, but some vaccinations may be recommended. Natural disasters are uncommon, but heavy snowfall can disrupt transportation during winter months. Respecting cultural norms, like avoiding public drunkenness, is advised.

Download Vigilios

Your Pocket-Sized Travel Safety Guide

A phone displaying the Vigilios app and it's safety features.
App Store

Safety & Security

Sweden is generally considered a safe destination for travelers. However, it's important to exercise caution and be aware of potential risks.

  • Petty Crime: While violent crime rates are low, petty crimes like pickpocketing and bag snatching can occur, especially in crowded areas and on public transportation in major cities like Stockholm. Remain vigilant and keep valuables secure.

  • Scams: Be wary of common scams targeting tourists, such as overcharging for services or goods, fake tour operators, and bogus charity collectors. Only use licensed taxis and reputable tour companies.

  • Civil Unrest: Sweden experiences occasional protests and demonstrations, which are usually peaceful but can disrupt transportation and cause localized disturbances. Avoid areas with large crowds or protests.

  • Terrorism: While the risk is low, terrorist attacks cannot be ruled out. Exercise caution in crowded public areas and follow the advice of local authorities.

  • Disputes: Alcohol-related incidents and disputes can occur, particularly in nightlife areas. Avoid confrontations and exercise caution when out at night.

Travelers should remain vigilant, follow local news and advice from authorities, and take common-sense precautions to ensure a safe and enjoyable trip to Sweden.

Health & Medical

Sweden is generally a safe and healthy travel destination, with a high standard of medical facilities and low risk of infectious diseases. However, there are a few health considerations for travelers:

  • Vaccinations: No specific vaccinations are required for entry into Sweden, but routine vaccinations like measles, mumps, rubella, and COVID-19 are recommended.

  • Common Illnesses: Travelers may experience common illnesses like the flu, colds, or stomach bugs. Proper hygiene and avoiding contact with sick individuals can help prevent these.

  • Air Quality: Air pollution levels in major Swedish cities like Stockholm are generally low and pose minimal health risks. However, those with respiratory conditions should monitor air quality advisories.

  • Insect-Borne Diseases: The risk of insect-borne diseases like Lyme disease or tick-borne encephalitis is present, especially in forested areas. Using insect repellent and checking for ticks after outdoor activities is advisable.

  • Medical Facilities: Sweden has an excellent healthcare system with modern, well-equipped medical facilities readily available in cities and towns. Travel insurance is recommended to cover any potential medical expenses.

  • Water and Food Safety: Tap water is safe to drink across Sweden. Food safety standards are high, but travelers should still exercise caution with street food or undercooked meat and seafood to avoid foodborne illnesses.

Natural Disasters

Sweden is generally not prone to major natural disasters, making it a relatively safe destination for travelers in this regard. However, there are a few weather-related risks to be aware of:

  • Severe Winter Weather: Sweden experiences harsh winters, especially in the northern regions. Blizzards, heavy snowfall, and icy conditions can disrupt transportation and outdoor activities. Travelers should pack appropriate winter gear and check weather advisories.

  • Flooding: While not a frequent occurrence, heavy rainfall or rapid snowmelt can lead to localized flooding in some areas, particularly during spring and summer months. Monitoring weather reports and heeding local advisories is recommended.

  • Wildfires: In recent years, Sweden has experienced an increase in wildfires during prolonged dry spells, especially in forested areas. These fires can cause air pollution and disrupt travel plans. Checking for fire advisories and following local guidance is advisable.

  • Avalanches: In mountainous regions, such as the Swedish Alps, avalanches pose a risk during the winter season. Travelers planning to engage in winter sports or activities in these areas should exercise caution and follow safety guidelines.

Overall, while natural disasters are not a major concern in Sweden, travelers should remain vigilant, monitor weather conditions, and follow the advice of local authorities to ensure a safe and enjoyable trip.


Sweden has an extensive and well-developed transportation system, making it relatively safe and convenient for travelers to get around. Public transportation, including trains, buses, and the metro system, is generally reliable and efficient, with a good safety record. However, it's still advisable to exercise caution, especially in crowded areas, to avoid potential petty crimes like pickpocketing.

  • Road Safety: Sweden has an excellent road infrastructure, with well-maintained highways and clear signage. However, driving conditions can be challenging during the winter months due to snow and ice, so it's essential to exercise caution and follow local advisories.

  • Public Transportation: The public transportation system in Sweden, particularly in major cities like Stockholm, Gothenburg, and Malmö, is highly efficient and safe. Trains, buses, and the metro are well-maintained and operate on a regular schedule.

  • Taxis: Taxis in Sweden are generally safe and reliable, but it's advisable to use licensed taxis or ride-sharing services like Uber to avoid potential scams or overcharging.

  • Cycling: Sweden is a bike-friendly country, with dedicated bike lanes and paths in many cities. However, cyclists should exercise caution when sharing the road with vehicles and follow local traffic laws.

  • Walking: Major cities in Sweden are generally safe for pedestrians, with well-marked crosswalks and pedestrian zones. However, it's still important to be aware of your surroundings and avoid walking alone in isolated areas, especially at night.

Cultural Norms

Sweden is a secular country with a progressive and liberal culture. However, as a visitor, it's important to be mindful of certain customs and etiquette. Punctuality is highly valued, so being on time for appointments or social gatherings is expected. Personal space is also respected, and Swedes generally avoid physical contact with strangers.

  • Greetings: A firm handshake is the standard greeting, and maintaining eye contact is considered polite. Hugging or kissing on the cheek is typically reserved for close friends and family.

  • Dress Code: Swedes tend to dress casually and modestly, especially in public spaces. Revealing or overly flashy clothing may be seen as inappropriate.

  • Alcohol Consumption: While alcohol is widely accepted, public drunkenness and rowdy behavior are frowned upon. It's advisable to drink in moderation and respect local laws and customs.

  • LGBTQ+ Rights: Sweden is known for its progressive stance on LGBTQ+ rights, and same-sex relationships are widely accepted. However, it's still important to be respectful and mindful of cultural differences, especially in more conservative or religious communities.

  • Environmental Awareness: Swedes are generally environmentally conscious, and visitors are encouraged to respect and participate in sustainable practices, such as recycling and minimizing waste.

Emergency Services

Emergency services in Sweden are generally reliable and well-equipped. The country has a comprehensive emergency response system that includes police, fire, and ambulance services.

  • Availability: Emergency services are available 24/7 throughout Sweden, including in rural areas. Response times may vary depending on the location and the nature of the emergency.

  • Reliability and Quality: Sweden's emergency services are known for their professionalism, efficiency, and high standards of training. They are well-funded and equipped with modern technology and resources.

  • Tourist-Specific Services: While there are no dedicated tourist-specific emergency services, the existing services are well-prepared to assist travelers. Many emergency personnel in major cities and tourist areas have basic English language skills to communicate with foreign visitors.

  • Medical Facilities: Sweden has an excellent healthcare system, with well-equipped hospitals and clinics throughout the country. These facilities are capable of handling a wide range of medical emergencies and providing high-quality care to travelers.

It's important to note that while emergency services in Sweden are generally reliable and efficient, travelers should still exercise caution and take necessary precautions to ensure their safety during their visit.

Frequently Asked Questions

A colorful illustration with three people and the letters "FAQ" representing a Frequently Asked Questions section

Is Sweden safe for tourists?

Sweden is generally a safe destination for tourists. However, it's advisable to exercise caution in major cities, especially at night, and be aware of petty crimes like pickpocketing. Follow basic safety precautions, and avoid isolated areas after dark.

Is Sweden safe for solo female travelers?

Sweden is considered safe for solo female travelers. However, it's still important to exercise caution, especially at night and in isolated areas. Avoid accepting drinks from strangers and be aware of your surroundings.

Is Sweden safe for families?

Sweden is a family-friendly destination with excellent infrastructure and facilities. Playgrounds, parks, and child-friendly attractions are widely available. However, be mindful of the high costs associated with family travel.

Is Sweden LGBTQ+ friendly?

Sweden is an LGBTQ+-friendly country with legal same-sex marriage and anti-discrimination laws. The LGBTQ+ community is widely accepted, and major cities like Stockholm have vibrant LGBTQ+ scenes.

Do you need a visa to go to Sweden?

Citizens of most Western countries, including the United States, Canada, and the European Union, do not require a visa for stays up to 90 days. However, a valid passport is mandatory for all visitors.

Can you drink tap water in Sweden?

Tap water in Sweden is safe to drink and meets high quality standards. It is regularly tested and treated, making it a convenient and cost-effective option for travelers.

What is the currency in Sweden?

The official currency in Sweden is the Swedish Krona (SEK). Credit cards are widely accepted, but it's advisable to carry some cash for smaller purchases.

Download the App

Map, Insights & Support - Vigilios is your Personal Safety Companion

A phone displaying the Vigilios app and it's safety features.
App Store QR LinkApp Store
Google Play QR Link
Coming soon to Android
Google Play