HELSINGBORG, SWEDEN 

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Things to know
about Helsingborg

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Southern Sweden’s City by the Sea

 

Helsingborg is a coastal city in southern Sweden, across the Øresund Strait from Denmark, which is to the west.

It’s known for its old town, home to the medieval Kärnan tower, the only surviving element of a fortress which harks back to the times when the Swedes and Danes were at war.

Nearby is the Gothic Church of St. Mary, (Sankta Maria Kyrka) dating from the 1300s and loaded with decorations from the middle ages.

 

The neo-Gothic Town Hall, with its tall clock tower, features stained-glass windows depicting important episodes in the city's history where wonderful beaches, attractions, shopping and nature are all just moments away. 

Helsingborg has a fabulous open-air museum, Fredriksdal and many acres of lush parkland.

 

Some of which are occupied by "Sofiero", a former royal residence. In this clean, well-looked-after coastal city you’ll have the pleasure of seaside promenades and bathing on warmer days.

 Something for everyone! 

 

Helsingborg is also known for its lively dining scene, and its many restaurants serve everything from Asian and European cuisine to scrumptious Swedish specialities.

It offers a wide range of attractions and activities too with something for everyone! 

"Dunkers Kulturhus" is one spot not to be missed, located right next to the water in Helsingborg’s North Harbour.

 

Dunkers houses urban and cultural history exhibitions, art, dance, music and theatre, designed by the architect Kim Utzon, son of the architect who designed the Sydney Opera House!

Tens of thousands of visitors also flock to "Sofiero" every year to enjoy the flourishing beauty, the royal tradition and the beautiful view of the sea.

 

The garden is considered one of Europe’s most beautiful where you can explore the exciting ravines, visit the exhibition in the castle, fool around in the magic forest, enjoy a good lunch in the glass veranda or just be. 

The list of things to do and see in Helsingborg just keeps going and going! 

 

How does Helsingborg Compare? 

The average cost of living in Helsingborg is €1340, which is in the top 32% of the most expensive cities in the world, ranked 3015th out of 9294 in a recent global list and 13th out of 60 in Sweden.

The median after-tax salary is €2615, which is enough to cover living expenses for 2 months. Ranked 190th (TOP 2%) in the list of best places to live in the world and 6th best city to live in Sweden.

 

With an estimated population of 114K, Helsingborg is the 8th largest city in Sweden.

The average rent in Helsingborg for a one-bedroom apartment in the city centre is approximately €750 - €890 per month, and utilities cost around €53 a month.

 

Other costs will be around €451 including markets, transportation, restaurants, and sports and leisure for one person.

If you're okay with an apartment outside of the city centre that will cost approximately €600 - €677.

On average a single person can spend around €150 a month on groceries, which is considered quite affordable compared to other places in the world. This will cover all your supermarket needs such as fruit, vegetables, dairy products and drinking water.

Cost of Living
in Helsingborg

The income tax rates in Sweden are progressive and range from 0% - 20% depending on your income for residents, while non-residents are taxed at a flat rate of 25%. If you work for more than six months in Sweden, normal Swedish income tax regulations apply.

The tax system has 2 different "brackets", meaning that your income is split between them. Simply put - Lower brackets are taxed at lower rates and higher brackets at higher rates. 

Each of the 290 municipalities in Sweden also has its own municipal income tax that residents are subject to. The tax rates here vary wildly, but the average is around 32%. 

A standard deduction exists in the form of a "grundavdrag", which translates to "basic deduction". This is calculated based on a complicated set of complex formulas / tables and the price base amount (PBB) which is called "prisbasbelopp", which for 2022 is 48,300 kr. 

Other deductions and credits also exist but can be calculated separately. 

Non-residents and not eligible for any deductions and are taxed at a flat rate of 25%, however are exempt from the municipal tax. 

There is a special case for non-residents who qualify as "approved foreign experts" with an income over a certain limit. Those that qualify may be eligible for special tax deduction in the form of an "expert tax relief". 

Eligibility to Work in Helsingborg

Sweden is a member of the European Union, the EU.

 

As an EU citizen, you are entitled to work in Sweden without a permit. You also have the right to move to Sweden to look for a job. Your family has the right to join you in Sweden as long as you have the "right of residence" in Sweden.

When entering Sweden, you and any accompanying family members must have a valid passport or national ID card showing your citizenship.

Family from outside the EU?

If your spouse/common-law spouse/registered partner/dependent children/dependent parents are not EU citizens, they will need to apply for residence cards, but this can also be done after moving to Sweden, at the same time as you register your right of residence.

Long-term EU resident?

If you have lived in another EU country with a residence permit for at least five years, you qualify as a long-term resident and can apply, in that country, for a special EU residence permit. This makes it easier to move to another EU country, such as Sweden.

Citizens of non-EU countries

Step one: a work permit

Generally, citizens from countries outside the EU must apply for a work permit to work in Sweden.

There are a few exceptions to the rule. Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, Japan, New Zealand and South Korea aged 18–30 can also apply for a working holiday visa (link in Swedish) for up to one year. (Please check the link for short-notice amendments to this list of countries.)

For employment that lasts less than three months, citizens of certain countries must have both a work permit and a visa. Also note that employees in certain fields may be exempt from work permit regulations.

Requirements for a work permit

To qualify for a work permit, you must have received an official offer of employment from a Swedish employer. Then there are a number of other work permit requirements, including that the work offered must:

  • have been advertised in the EU/EEA for at least ten days

  • offer terms of employment that match those set by Swedish collective agreements or those that are customary within the occupation or industry

  • pay a minimum monthly salary of SEK 13,000 before taxes.

You must also hold a valid passport in your home country.

Permits for family members

If you are a non-EU citizen eligible to receive a work permit, your spouse/common-law spouse/registered partner and children under the age of 21 (as well as children aged 21 or older who are financially dependent on you) have the right to join you in Sweden. They must apply for residence permits, either as part of your application or separately.

The application process

Generally, you will need to apply for your permit before entering Sweden, though in some cases you may be able to apply from within Sweden if you are already legally living in the country.

  • Receive an offer of employment (pdf) – which must have been approved by a relevant trade union (pdf).

  • Compile and submit your application – either online or through a paper application submitted to your closest Swedish embassy or consulate. Your completed application must include:
    – a completed application form
    – copies of the pages of your passport that show personal data, period of validity and whether you have permission to live in countries other than your country of origin (e.g. other visas or residence permits)
    – your offer of employment and the statement from the trade union
    – an application fee.

  • The Migration Agency considers your application and informs you of its decision, see current waiting times.

  • Submit data for visa and residence permit card.
     

Extending a work permit

If you want to keep working after your current permit has expired, you need to apply for an extension. If you apply before your current permit expires, you are entitled to keep working while waiting for a decision.

Citizens of Nordic countries

Citizens of a Nordic country have the right to freely live and work in Sweden without registering with the Migration Agency. However, you should register with the Swedish Tax Agency to gain a Swedish personal identity number.

Citizens of Switzerland

Swiss citizens need a residence permit to work in Sweden for longer than three months. You apply for your residence permit (pdf) after entering Sweden and can start working as soon as you enter the country. When entering Sweden, you must have a valid passport. Your family may join you.

International students

International students with a residence permit in Sweden are allowed to work alongside their studies. If they want to stay and work in Sweden after completing their studies, they need a work permit.

More information can be found here.

Unlike many other countries, Sweden has no minimum wage law. Instead, wages are set by collective bargaining agreements between employers and unions. Therefore, labour unions can be a good source of information on salary levels in Sweden. Statistics on average salaries in Sweden by profession are available on Statistics Sweden’s website:

www.scb.se

 

A job in Sweden can be either a permanent or temporary position. Most permanent positions are preceded by a trial period of three to six months during which the employer can fire an employee at will. Once a position is permanent, certain conditions must be met before an employer is allowed to fire an employee.

In accordance with EU law, Swedish employers must provide the employee with a written contract within 30 days if he or she requests one.

 

The EURES network encourages all employees to request a written contract from their employer.

Sweden is well-known for prioritizing quality of life in its labour laws. For example, parents of children up to a certain age have the right to work part-time, a right of which many Swedes take advantage of.

 

Parents who miss work in order to take care of a sick child (up to a certain age) can also receive compensation for lost income.

All workers in Sweden receive at least five weeks of paid vacation per year. Sweden also has generous laws for parental leave for new parents.

Long-term residents have certain rights which are similar to those of EU citizens. If you intend to reside in Sweden, you shall register at the local Tax Office. This process is called folkbokföring.

In order to work in Sweden, you must have a work permit. The main rule is that you should apply for and have been granted a work permit before entering Sweden.

 

When applying online you are given clear instructions about how to fill in your application and what you should send with the application. This makes it easier for you to apply correctly and increases your chances of a quick decision.

More information on this can be found here

For more information on working in Sweden, visit the Swedish Public Employment Service website via the link below:

Swedish Public Employment Service

Want to work in Helsingborg? Click here for information on all multi-lingual roles in Sweden

Helsingborg, Sweden