Currency, credit cards and money in Sweden
Sweden is often said to be the most cashless country on the planet. Read on for more information about currency, payment methods and prices in Sweden.
What currency is used in Sweden?
- The monetary unit in Sweden is the krona SEK (plural “kronor”) and equals 100 öre.
- Banknotes are printed in values of 20, 50, 100, 200, 500 and 1,000 kronor.
- The coin is available as 1, 2, 5 and 10 kronor.
Is there a limit on the amount of Swedish and foreign currency you can take with you into Sweden? No. But Sweden has yet to ratify the Euro treaty, which means that you can not pay using euro (€) or other currencies than SEK in cash.
Please note: Older versions of the 20, 50 and 1,000-kronor banknotes are not valid. Also, the majority of older coins became invalid in 2017. Learn more about valid banknotes in Sweden and about valid coins.
Credit cards and cash
Sweden is widely regarded as the most cashless society on the planet. Most of the country’s bank branches have stopped handling cash; many shops, museums and restaurants now only accept plastic or mobile payments. Most terminals in stores are supporting the use of paying with contactless cards.
But no need to worry. Major credit cards (some restrictions may apply to American Express) are widely accepted throughout Sweden at banks, hotels, stores, restaurants, taxis, car rental companies, and for air, ship and rail tickets.
For those wondering how much it will cost to use your card abroad, it all depends on the agreement you have with your card supplier. Most credit cards will charge you for using a cash machine abroad, but since it varies between companies, contact your card provider to know the rate for sure.
Please note: In order to pay or withdraw cash with your credit card it requires that you have a card with chip and PIN (Personal Identification Number). The older magnetic-stripe cards won’t work.
How and where can you get cash in Sweden?
You can get cash with your Visa, MasterCard, Maestro or Cirrus card at any “Bankomat” or “Uttagsautomat” ATM. A small fee can be added for your withdrawal, it’s all depending on your bank’s terms.
There is often ATM’s available directly at the airport, for example on Stockholm Arlanda, Göteborg Landvetter, Skavsta, Malmö and Luleå.
You can also go to a money exchange office like Forex/X-change, Tavex, Change Group, Ria or another currency exchange office. At their respective sites, you can see their rates for different currencies and can compare for example the rates for dollar(USD), Euro (EUR) or maybe Pound (GBP) to the Swedish krona (SEK).
Travelling to Sweden on a visa?
When obtaining a visa for visiting, Sweden requires that you have SEK 450 for each day spent in Sweden. Read more at the Swedish migration agency, Migrationsverket.
Here is a list of the countries whose citizens need a visa before entering Sweden; citizens of countries in need of visas.
For travellers’ cheques, or to exchange from your own currency, please find more information at Forex Bank.
Many Swedes use the mobile app Swish for doing bank errands and/or mobile payments. The app is connected to something called “BankID” which is a must to have installed on the same device as the Swish-app. BankID is connected to your social security number (SSN) through a bank, therefore everyone wanting to use Swish must have a Swedish bank account and a Swedish SSN (personnummer). Here you can find information about providers of BankID: Banks that offer BankID.
What currency do they use in Sweden?
Despite being a part of the EU, Sweden does not use the euro. There was a referendum back in 2003 and at that time, Swedes decided not to adopt the single currency.
All of this means that if you’re planning a trip to Sweden you’ll need to get used to Sweden’s very own currency, the Swedish krona.
Swedish crowns, often referred to as SEK or Kr, are each divided up into 100 öre (think of them as pennies or cents). It’s still quite common to see price labels that include öre (for example, 7,95 SEK) but because the öre part is worth so little, it’s always ignored when it actually comes to paying the bill. So, for example: if your supermarket bill comes to 149,87 SEK, you’ll actually be charged 150 SEK. And if your bill comes to 149,20 SEK, you’ll only pay 149.
Swedish bank notes have the following denominations: 20, 50, 100, 200, 500 and 1000. There are also four types of coins – 1 SEK, 2 SEK, 5 SEK and 10 SEK. You can withdraw paper money at ATMs right across the country, but be aware that it can be difficult to spend them – many, many businesses in Sweden (including some banks) are completely cash-free.
For the most part, euros are not accepted in Sweden. However, you can spend them at tourist shops in Stockholm and at some hotels – usually those owned by big international chains.
If you need to send money to or from Sweden, we recommend using Transferwise.
Swedish Krona Currency
The Swedish krona (SEK) has been the currency of Sweden since 1873. It is issued by the Swedish central bank, Sveriges Riksbank. The symbol of the currency is kr. One krona is subdivided into 100 öre. In English, the currency is sometimes referred to as the Swedish crown (‘krona’ means ‘crown’ in Swedish).
Coins currently in circulation are 1 krona, and 5 and 10 kronor. Banknotes are in denominations of 20, 50, 100, and 500 kronor.
- Sweden has achieved an enviable standard of living, due to high-tech capitalism, extensive social benefits, a modern distribution system, and a highly skilled labor force.
- The economy is heavily oriented to foreign trade, utilizing a resource base of timber, hydro power, and iron ore.
- The global economic crisis of 2008 reduced export demand and consumption, causing the Swedish economy to slide into recession despite its strong finances and underlying fundamentals. Strong commodity exports contributed to a strong rebound in 2010-2011.
- The Swedish Krona was introduced in 1873, replacing the Riksdaler at par. The currency was introduced as a result of the Scandinavian Monetary Union with Norway and Denmark, which lasted until World War I. Currencies under the treaty were under the gold standard.
- The Monetary Union ended with the outbreak of World War I in 1914. Sweden abandoned the gold standard on August 2, 1914, and without a fixed exchange rate the union came to an end.
- By treaty, Sweden is required to join the eurozone and convert to using the Euro. However, most Swedes are opposed to adopting the currency. On September 14, 2003, 56% of a high turnout of voters rejected adopting the Euro. Taking advantage of a loophole, the Swedish government has opted not to join ERM II, a precondition to adopting the Euro.
|Nicknames||spänn, bagis, pix, riksdaler|
|ISO 4217 code||SEK|
|Central bank||Sveriges Riksbank|
|Currency subunits||öre = 1/100 of a Kroner|
|Denominations||Bills: 20 kr, 50 kr, 100 kr, 500 kr, 1,000 kr|
Coins: 1 kr, 5 kr, 10 kr
|Countries using this currency||Sweden|
|Currencies pegged to SEK||None|
|SEK is pegged to||None|
Swedish Krona (SEK)
What Is the Swedish Krona (SEK)?
SEK is the currency code for the Swedish krona, the currency for Sweden. The Swedish krona is made up of 100 öre and is often presented with the symbol “kr.”1
The krona, which means “crown” in Swedish, has been Sweden’s currency since 1873 and is also expressed by the symbol KR. It replaced the Swedish riksdaler.1
As of August 2022, one SEK is worth roughly $0.10.
Understanding the Swedish Krona (SEK)
The Swedish krona replaced the riksdaler riksmynt at par in 1873, when the Scandinavian Monetary Union was formed.
The Scandinavian Monetary Union was a fixed exchange rate system—based on the gold standard—between Sweden and Denmark. Norway joined the Union in 1875. While member countries still had their own currencies, the Union ensured exchange rate stability. This Monetary Union lasted until 1914.3
Since the early 1990s, the exchange rate has been allowed to float against other currencies, with the central bank intervening when necessary to stabilize the krona’s value.4
The most heavily traded currency pair involving the SEK is the EUR/SEK, or the euro versus the krona.
Sweden was expected to join the eurozone, and adopt the euro, as part of the EU accession treaty of 1995.5 However, the majority of politicians and citizens have not been in favor of adopting the euro. Therefore, there is no urgency to give up the krona, and as of 2022, there are no plans to switch over to the euro.
Despite Sweden’s relatively small economy, its well-educated and tech-savvy workforce and the fact that it is home to many multinational corporations have led many Forex observers to classify SEK as a safe haven currency
SEK and Negative Interest Rates
In July 2009, Sweden became the first country to experiment with negative interest rates when the Swedish Central Bank briefly lowered its deposit rate for commercial banks to below zero.9 Initially, the SEK strengthened; pundits saw it as a positive that Sweden was taking a strong initiative to correct the economy amidst the Great Recession of 2007 to 2009.
However, over the next few years, the Swedish economy floundered, and, in 2014, the Riksbank once again dropped the target rate to zero. In 2015, it announced a repo rate of −0.10%, which was further lowered to −0.50% in 2016, a level that was maintained through January 2019 when the rate was raised to −0.25%. By December 2019, rates once again returned to zero.
Correlations of the SEK
The SEK is strongly correlated with its Scandinavian counterparts, the Danish krone (DKK) and the Norwegian krone (NKK). The following chart shows the SEK/USD, DKK/USD, and NOK/USD on one chart; they tend to move together, though at certain times one may be stronger than the others.
Swedish Krona Coins and Bills
Currently, there are one, two, five, and 10 kronor (plural) coins in circulation. In terms of bills, there are 20, 50, 100, 200, 500, and 1,000 kronor bills.10
The E-krona is a digital currency controlled by the Riksbank. It is exchanged through the Swish app. The E-krona hasn’t officially been adopted because cash is still in use in the country. However, in the future, it’s possible that cash payments will be eliminated altogether.
Example of Exchange Rate Conversion Using the Swedish Krona
Assume that the SEK/USD exchange rate is 0.1250. That means it costs $0.1250 to buy one krona. To find how many kronor it takes to buy one U.S. dollar, divide one by the exchange rate: 1 / 0.1250 = 8. It takes eight kronor to buy one USD. This is the rate for the USD/SEK currency pair; notice how the currencies have flipped position.
If the SEK/USD rate moves up to 0.1425, the SEK has increased in value relative to the USD, and the USD has decreased in value relative to the krona. It now costs more USD to buy one krona.
If the rate falls to 0.10, the SEK has decreased in value relative to the USD. It now costs fewer USD to buy one SEK.
Does Sweden Still Use Krona?
The Swedish krona (SEK) is the official currency of Sweden.
Which Countries Have “Krona” Currency?
Krona is the official currency of Sweden. Krona literally means “crown” in Swedish. Other countries also have currencies that are called “crown.” In Norway, the currency unit is known as the krone. In the Czech Republic, the currency unit is called the koruna. In their respective languages, both of these words can be translated as “crown.”
Is Swedish Krona Pegged to Another Currency?
How Can One Redeem Old Swedish Krona Currency?
The Riksbank (the Central Bank of Sweden) offers an application process for the redemption of all invalid Swedish banknotes, regardless of their age.13
SEK is the currency code for the Swedish krona, the official currency for the country of Sweden.
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