Tuesday 28 November 2023

Sophistication in Sweden's Stockholm

But Maybe Not For SL?

When fbb was a childhood and ignorant collector of postage stamps. he remembers that those fot Sweden were printed on very cheap paper and not a patch on those of Queen Elizabeth II.
They look a bit brighter now but still a bit flimsy. But there is no monetary value on them.
There is a King ...
... who has been on the throne for 50 years. He is King Carl Gustaf and his queen is Silvia.
She has a 30 Krone commemorative with price printed thereupon - but this year's Christmas stamp (just one not about 100 as in the UK) is unpriced. (OK Maybe 100 is a bit if an exaggeration but ...)
They have quite a neat system for postal rates. Currently they go up in steps of 15 Kr and a single stamp pays 15 Kr of postage - so for a 45 Kr mailing you stick on THREE identical unpriced  stamps.
Jul (Yule in English) is "Christmas" and Brev means "mail". Seemples!

fbb struggled to remember what he had forgotten about Sweden and, with a bit of a prod from Wikipedia, came up with Saab and Volvo cars ...
... Bjorn Borg ...
... Auguste Strindberg ...
... and a popular music group whose name currently escapes him?
Were they in any way successful?

Stockholm ...
... has a city population roughly equivalent to Birmingham but is built on a multiplicity of islands.
This makes things exciting for public transport.

It has red buses ...
... and blue buses.
It has blue trams ...
... and suburban trains (also mainly blue) designated "Metro" ...
... and airport express trains in cream and yellow.
It also has a small, narrow gauge suburban network ...
... which is now being equipped with shiny new trains.
Everything (except the Airport Express) is run by "SL" the city's transport authority; but everything is "contracted out" to a variety of operators.

But the web site ...

... maybe fbb is thick; he doesn't know any Swedish and the English translation version of the web site seems hopelessly inadequate!
Your elderly blogger has found a rail network map ...
... ferries ditto ...
... and diagrams of many, many unpronounceable interchanges.
He tried to "sok" ...
... (with "umlaut") but to no avail.

No map of the bus network is on offer and no obvious timetables of anything!

While you are reading this, fbb will be trying harder. But tomorrow's blog will look more closely at the well-mapped rail services.


Use the online planning tools or pick up a timetable. Timetable booklets are free of charge and you can pick them up at the SL Centers.

SL Center are our travel information and customer service centers that are located around town.

You can download a timetable at the Swedish section, but that service is not available in English.

The timetables are in Swedish, but should be fairly easy to understand if you have a slight command of Swedish.

Haven't found them yet!

 Next Stockholm blog : Wednesday 29th November 


  1. The Metro and surburban rail services are separate, Metro being SL's own creation, and the suburban rail originally - but no longer - SJ i.e. the same as an LT/BR split.

  2. On the SL website on my computer, Google Translate asks me if I want to translate Swedish to English - say Translate. You get lots of maps and timetables from comprehensive maps to bus stops at station maps. The timetables are mostly in twice for a timetable change on 2023-12-10. (The Scandinavian date format is annoying, particularly when at work we had that with UK and US formats - we put the month in letters!)