One year ago I received a letter confirming that I have been accepted to Masters Programme in Sweden, I got my first choice and I was very happy and a bit scared at the same time. Happy because I got what I wanted, and scared as moving to another country is not very easy, as you leaving your family, friends and everything with what you have been familiar. As for real, my first month in Sweden was rather stressful: a lot of paperwork, lack of friends, Swedish language, different food, new system of studying and so on. That time passed, and now I am really enjoying living in Gothenburg.
In order to make your start in a new place less stressful and more comfortable here some advises:
1. Try to know more about culture, lifestyle of Swedes, then you avoid the “cultural shock”. Especially if you are not from Europe, it’s worth to know more about country, as it might be very different from yours.
2. Try to find your future classmates or people from the same programme via facebook. Many students have their programmes’ groups, so you may find some people with whom you will be studying. It might be very useful, and you won’t feel lost during your first day at the uni, as some new faces will be familiar.
3. Plan your budget! Sweden is not the cheapest country in the world, so make sure that you have enough money to live here. To find a job without knowing Swedish is very tough task.
4. Think about passport, visa, medical insurance, credit cards, applying for accommodation in advance! Do not wait until your arrival, as you will be quite busy with other things.
5. Sometimes moving to another country might turn a bureaucratic nightmare, so take all the possible documents, certificates and diplomas with you.
6. Moving to a new country is difficult, saying goodbye to your family and friends is hard, but those things will pass and you will be enjoying new experiences, friends, food, places and so on. So, don’t be too hard on yourself during your first weeks in a new country!