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Five reasons you should consider marrying a Swede

Marrying a Swede has some major benefits, argues The Local contributor Oliver Gee (who researched the subject so extensively he's going to marry a Swede himself).

Five reasons you should consider marrying a Swede
Marrying a Swede has many advantages... Photo: Martina Holmberg/TT

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So maybe you're dating a Swede. Maybe you're even thinking about marrying one.

Well, I've done my research as I'm about to marry a Swede myself, and I've come up with five reasons why it's honestly a very good idea.

Now, when I put this question out to a Facebook thread for foreigners in Sweden, the responses were mostly funny, things like “You'll learn many more ways to cook potatoes” or “you'll become an expert on dealing with passive aggressiveness”.

But to be fair, these are things that come with dating a Swede too, so I’ve focused on the wedding part.

Here we go.

You (may) get one of the best passports in the world

So, if you marry a Swede and fulfil all the other requirements for becoming Swedish, then you'll be getting your hands on a pretty mighty passport. In fact, a recent index ranked the Swedish passport as the third most powerful in the world. 

READ ALSO: Sweden has third most powerful passport in the world

The Swedish passport provides visa-free or visa-on-arrival access to 187 countries, more than that of international heavyweights like the UK, US and China.

Singapore and Germany were second (providing access to 188 countries), while Japan was first (189).

In other words, it's highly likely that your new passport acquisition – if indeed you choose to take one – will be an upgrade from whatever you're using at the moment. 

You get to change your name to whatever you want

When you marry a Swede, you can choose to change your surnames to anything you fancy. Well, anything within reason, of course.

Yes, as this New York Times article explains, many Swedes like to rebel against the hegemony of traditional Swedish names – and it’s no surprise, 42 of the 100 most common surnames end in “son”. As a result, many Swedes like to change their name and create a new identity.

In fact, the practice is so common that it's almost expected nowadays.

“When I married my Swede, everyone was asking what name we were choosing,” Kate Lundqvist told The Local. “We were boring and stuck with his surname.”

You get to have a Swedish wedding

If you're lucky enough to marry into a Swedish family, you'll get to treat your family to one of the more unusual sets of wedding traditions going around.

For example, did you know that at Swedish weddings, it’s common for all the men to kiss the bride if the groom leaves the table, and vice versa. It’s a mad moment of chaos, everyone clinks their glasses, all the men (or women) run around the table smooching the newlywed, and all the foreign guests are sitting there gobsmacked. It's quite something.

You probably won't have to worry about your inlaws

Sweden is a paradise for retiring and growing old, so you won’t have to worry about looking after your inlaws as time passes.

In fact, Sweden was ranked as the second best place on the planet to grow old (after Norway) in a study by Columbia University. The study took into account social and economic indicators to reflect the wellbeing of the elderly, and Sweden shone through across the board.

What this means for you is that you’re not going to have to worry about looking after the Swedish inlaws because times, quite simply, aren’t likely to get tough for them.


You might get access to a sommarstuga

OK, this is a big maybe, but some Swedish families have a little summer cottage out in the countryside somewhere, which has often been in the family for generations. If you’re lucky, your family might have one too, tucked away somewhere in the middle of nowhere like all the rest of them.

Now, while these cottages are often just very basic places that sit empty for the majority of the year, you’ve just married into a truly exotic little summer holiday option.

But you'll have to be lucky. While there are estimated to be around 700,000 of these cottages in the country, recent stats suggest just 16 percent of families have access to their own. But hey, you never know, right?












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