Tag: Sweden Travel

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New Booze Rules: Scandinavian Airlines Limiting Alcoholic Drinks

Where: Sweden
June 8, 2015 at 10:32 AM | by | ()

Drunk airline passengers are no fun. (Perhaps you've endured a few reminders lately?) And SAS Airlines has come up with a plan to curb those over-served travelers; the Scandinavian airline will now cut you off after three alcoholic drinks, even in business class.

Responsible drinkers: Don't worry if you're planning to fly from North America to the land of sleek furniture and famously happy people, as this limit is only effective for the airline's flights within Europe. The guideline is in place for flyers that are a bit too fancy-free while at cruising altitude, and it really makes sense since most flights in the network are under 3.5 hours. At those fly times, reaching for the fourth serving of Aquavit just seems a bit excessive.

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And the Winning Country of Eurovision 2015 Is....

Where: Austria
May 26, 2015 at 10:08 AM | by | ()

While Americans were celebrating our Armed Forces over Memorial Day weekend, across the pond all of Europe was abuzz with the annual song contest Eurovision. Celebrating its 60th year, the competition showcases some of the best in songwriting and performing from each European country. (Think of it as the Olympics of music.) As is tradition, the preceding year's winning country plays host to the live concert, which drives a large number of music tourists to one city. This year that host city was Vienna, thanks to last year's win by Conchita Wurst.

This year was also a special one because the contest saw a new country competing. No, a new European country wasn't created minutes before the deadline for entries — rather, Australia traveled halfway around the world to show Europe its talent. You see, the Aussies are pretty big fans of the show and this year they were invited to compete. Alas, they came in 5th place — so we won't be watching Eurovision live from Sydney Opera House in 2016.

So which country took home the win? Where will all of Europe's music masterminds be headed in 2016?

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Use Whatever Currency You Want to Play Video Games at Sweden's Biggest Airports

Where: Sweden
March 27, 2015 at 10:30 AM | by | ()

If you’re a product of the 1980s, you’re gonna love the latest do-good effort from Sweden’s two biggest airports’, Stockholm Arlanda and Goteborg Landvetter.

They’ve installed custom-made retro video games (think Ms. Pac Man, Space Invaders and Galaga) that will accept coins of any and all currency, reports CNN.

Put another coin in the video game (baby), and all proceeds go to the Swedish Red Cross. It’s a far better use of spare change than let’s say, the rows of slot machines at the McCarran International Airport.

“The Charity Arcades is a way for us to emphasize our partnership with the Swedish Red Cross in a creative and inspiring way,” Michael Persson Gripkow, marketing director at Swedavia, Swedish Airports told CNN. “The travelers get a fun retro experience at the airport and at the same time they have the opportunity to contribute to the important work of the Red Cross.”

As natural born multitaskers, we love the idea of killing time while giving back. Especially over such cherished video game staples of our childhood. Our only request? Please bring in an air hockey or Foosball table to make our basement sports lovin’ heart totally happy.

[Photo: Flickr/raider3_anime]

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Neighborhoods to Know and Go: Stockholm's Cool and Creative Södermalm

October 21, 2014 at 12:31 PM | by | ()

A typical trip to Stockholm probably consists of a visit to the Vasa museum to see the viking ship or a stop by the Abba museum, where you can listen to “Waterloo” on a continuous loop for two hours. You’ll probably visit the beautiful, golden buildings of Gamla Stan and pop in the chic shops on Drottninggatan.

But you’ll likely overlook the up-and-coming neighborhood Södermalm, which was home to Greta Garbo and to that girl with the dragon tattoo (you can even visit her actual flat).

In a former life, Södermalm was the poorest district of Stockholm, the site of executions, the shipyard, and later working class ruins. Today, Södermalm attracts the posh folks to its SoFo district—aptly named and modeled after London and NYC’s SoHo—along with eclectic bars, cafes, and cliff-side views. It’s comparable to the resurgence of Brooklyn.

Recently rated among the trendiest places in the world, here’s a quick exploration into what’s going on in Södermalm:

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'Welcome To Sweden' Creator Greg Poehler Has Tips for Your Next Trip

Where: Sweden
August 21, 2014 at 2:35 PM | by | ()

Greg Poehler had the perfect subject for his first sitcom - his own life. After falling in love with a Swedish women, Poehler left his life in NYC and followed her home. Now, he's turned his initial culture shock into a hit sitcom in both countries.

Along the way, he also learned a thing or two about communicating in his new country. Here are few tips Poehler has for your next trip to Sweden.

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Stockholm's Airport Express is Crazy Efficient, Crazy Expensive

July 15, 2014 at 10:17 AM | by | ()

Oh, Scandinavia: beautiful cities, beautiful people, beautiful landscapes, one hell of a budget buster. The Nordic countries have a lot to offer, but be prepared to recoil from time to time at the sheer cost of doing, well, anything. Oslo tends to take the crown when it comes to being unfriendly on your wallet, but Stockholm gets you before you’ve even arrived.

Getting from Stockholm Arlanda Airport (ARN) to the city center is possible by taxi (bad idea), bus (the cheapest option) or, most conveniently, via the Arlanda Express, departing from underneath the airport terminal directly to Stockholm Central Station. Fast it is, with the journey taking about 20 minutes; convenient, also. A regular adult return will set you back 490 Swedish Krona though – that’s just over $72 dollars. It makes the £34 ($58) for the notoriously expensive Heathrow Express in London look positively reasonable.

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Why the Swedish 'Fika' Blows a Visit to Starbucks Out of the Water

Where: Sweden
April 11, 2014 at 2:21 PM | by | ()

In a new weekly Friday column, we'll explore street food and other culinary specialties and customs from around the world. Last week, it was smoked-meat sandwiches in Montreal. This week, we head to Sweden for a cup of coffee.

As anyone who has been out of the country understands, coffee is drank differently in other places than it is here in the States. Traditionally, if you asked for a coffee "to go" across the Atlantic, the Europeans would be confused. In America, coffee is a drug that wakes us up and keeps us going. In other countries, it's an experience, a timeout, never to be drank while driving. You "take" a coffee, you don't "drink" it. In Sweden, this concept is taken so seriously that they have an official name for it.

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'Vacationers' and 'Travelers' Alike Should Take Advantage of People-to-People Programs

September 19, 2013 at 10:24 AM | by | ()

When it comes down to it, the travel industry breaks down into two types of tourists: "Travelers" and vacationers.

Some people are explorers, and others are pool-side dwellers (and many of us are somewhere in between). Some are comfortable with new horizons and feel enriched by the new experiences, and some only have a week’s worth of time off per year and want to know what they’re going to get for their money; they don’t want any surprises.

While we’ve always understood the appeal of both sides of the coin, a recent rise in what tourism boards refer to as "people-to-people" programs are helping even the most bashful of tourists dig into the local culture. These programs combine the concepts of traveling and vacationing, providing you with an organized, safe way to connect with the local communities.

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A Food Truck in Stockholm Actually Serves 'Airport Cuisine'

September 17, 2013 at 10:29 AM | by | ()

Food trucks go where the people go, and—shocker—people go to the airport. We’ve seen trucks set up shop over in San Francisco, and they’ve been involved with an extended layover down in Orlando as well. This time they’re on the moves overseas, as the latest airport food truck is doing a little airport promotion and marketing in Sweden.

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Island Hopping Off the Coast of...Sweden?

September 13, 2013 at 1:44 PM | by | ()

Quick: what are the first three things that come to mind when you think of Sweden?

If they're some combination of Stockholm, meatballs, IKEA, and cold weather, then you're not alone. Most North Americans who visit Sweden go to the capital city or head north for the ice hotel and northern lights, but the best kept secret is that the southwest coast of the country is riddled with islands and coastal village towns.

True, summer in Sweden is short, but it can be very sweet. Here are a few musings about the lesser-known coastline to help you get acquainted:

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Where Eurovision Will Be Singing Its Heart Out in 2014

Where: Europe
May 20, 2013 at 11:31 AM | by | ()

Well, it's been a whole entire year since all of Europe was singing and dancing to the annual song contest, Eurovision. Last time we watched, the insanity went down in Baku, Azerbaijan and Sweden won, so this year they played hosts in the Southern city of Malmö.

The contest as a whole has held the reputation of being quite the show, a mix of both native tongue and English lyrics accompanied by flamboyant costumes and overly produced choreography. This year was no exception. While the Russian grannies from last year didn't make the cut, 2013's winner did come from another Scandinavian country; Denmark.

If you're not up on the rules, this means Eurovision heads to Copenhagen for 2014.

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Video Interlude: A Time-Lapse Trip on Scandinavia's Ultra Fancy, Duty-Free Ferry

Where: Finland
February 21, 2013 at 1:30 PM | by | ()

If you think cruise shops are pretty fancy, then you haven't stepped onboard a Scandinavian ferry. Indeed, ferries aren't what they used to be—they're so much better, as musty waiting room-like spaces are being replaced with comfortable lounges, entertainment spaces and even airport-style shopping.

The latter is the highlight of the crossing between Stockholm, Sweden and Turku, Finland onboard the Viking Line ferry M/S Grace. The boat stops in Marihamn, a port town which sits pretty on the Åland Islands between the two Baltic Sea cities. These islands are one of those weird territories travelers love to visit, as they have their own government, flag, stamps and patriotism, but still come under some jurisdiction of another country (Finland, in this case). The draw for the ferries and their duty-free shops is that these boats are exempt from Europe's VAT tax. It's literally a booze cruise—buying it, not so much consuming it.

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