Faking fluency: Ten Swedish words that will help you sound like a local

The Local Sweden
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Faking fluency: Ten Swedish words that will help you sound like a local
Tjena, want to go to a najs party? Jajamensan! Photo: Faramarz Gosheh/

Work these words into your conversations in Swedish and you'll sound fluent in no time.



This little word packs quite a punch, with just two letters expressing a whole host of things. Surprise, pain, shock, sympathy, embarrassment: oj can mean any and all of the above. Click here to read more


Jo and ja both mean yes. But when do you use one and when do you use the other? Click here to read more


You can never go wrong with a simple hej as a greeting. But if you're confident enough to branch out into the great wide world of Swedish slang, consider going for a tjena. Click here to read more


Swedes are not a people prone to big reactions. But once in a while you may hear a mildly surprised Swede step out of their shell and exclaim "… nämen!" Click here to read more



Are you looking for that great filler word to smooth our your sentences and make you sound more fluent in Swedish? We've got you covered with the word typ. Click here to read more


Jajamensan looks slightly ridiculous written down, but it's one of those words that helps you sound much more Swedish once you learn how to deploy it. Click here to read more


Here's a word that should be familiar to Swedish learners with a knowledge of English, and demonstrates Swedes' tendency to incorporate English words into their language. Click here to read more


You may not learn this word in Swedish class, but it may come in useful whether you're spending time with children or searching for a spot to have fika. Click here to read more


This word will help you fake fluency in Swedish, as long as you use it correctly. It is particularly good for when you want to speak, but are waiting to make sure you have everyone's attention. Click here to read more


Orka is a word that you'll hear a lot, and is key to understanding young Swedes. Click here to read more

All images: nito103/Depositphotos

Do you want to learn a new Swedish word (almost) every day? Follow The Local's word of the day series.


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