Stockholm Etiquette

1. Wardrobe = Black clothes

Stockholmers wear black all the time!! I’m not even kidding. I thought it was a general Sweden thing, but Stocholmers take their love of black clothes to the next level! One and a half years of living in Stockholm, 80% of my wardrobe is all black too, and I LOVE it !

2. Into the phone

You know those memes where people bump into each other because they’re too engrossed in their phone? Yeah, that’s not even a meme in Stockholm, it’s a lifestyle. If you get on a metro, or a bus, or if you just walk around a street, you’ll see at lease 8 out of 10 people looking into their phone as they’re walking/ travelling.

3. No apologies

When people bump into each other here, there’s no exchange of apologies. Initially, it was a little bit of a cultural shock, because back home, we apologise for everything, so it was difficult getting used to get bumped into and not hear apologies, or bump into someone and apologise as they don’t respond and walk away. But now, I’m used to it, its just one of those “when in Rome” lessons.

4. Anytime is coffee time

I used to never drink coffee before, but now, I drink it like it’s my main job. It’s just one of those things that becomes the norm. You can see almost always spot people with coffee, no matter what time of the day it is!

5. Minimal 

Since we’ve already established the ‘all black clothing’ trend in Stocholm, let’s go a little more in detail into the (general) fashion style here. It’s all very minimal. Solid colours, minimal prints and patters. White, Black, Grey are some of the most common colours you’ll see on people!

6. Space

“Cause space is just a word made up by someone who’s afraid to get to close, ooh”
So if Nick Jonas is right, the word “space” was probably invented by a Stockholmer. People LOVE their personal space here, they mind their own business and don’t indulge much in small talk or pleasantries.

7. Don’t  talk to  smile at strangers

People don’t really smile at each other here. If you’re in the metro and someone is standing right in front of you, or if you walk in a mall or whatever, people barely smile at each other. It’s poker face all the way!

It’s been one and a half years of living in Stockholm, most things are wonderful, some moments are weird, some are funny, but all in all, it’s my second home, and I love it 😀

Your Swe-desi Seafarer signing off 🙂

Comments (2)


An Indian student studying Environmental Engineering and Sustainable Infrastructure at KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden. Email : supritha.studyinsweden[at]
Read more about Supritha

Comments (2)

Leave a comment