The lowdown on sending parcels to Sweden
Sweden is one of the happiest countries in the world (despite what BBC4's Scandi-noirs would have you believe), known for its well-being ethos and liberal attitudes. It's not surprising that so many Brits up sticks and make the move to Stockholm, Malmö and Gothenburg. Come Christmas and other holidays, therefore, many of us will need to send packages across the North Sea to our chums in Sverige - as the Swedes call it.
Here's the low down on sending parcels to Sweden:
Naturally, sending a parcel abroad necessitates careful packaging. Undoubtedly, you'll use a courier service that has a good track record for delivering items not only on time, but in one piece, but you still need to ensure your parcel is secure. If the item you wish to mail is small, it's a good idea to wrap it well and place it in a slightly bigger box. Your recipient might wonder at the size of their parcel, but this is purely to ensure that it doesn't get lost on its long journey. No matter how careful all agencies are in mailing your item, teeny-tiny packages can get lost, so pack it big!
Of course you need to state your intended address legibly and correctly - preferably in capital letters. It will help enormously if you can include the postcode. The numerical codes comprise five characters and a space should be inserted between the third and fourth numbers.
Addresses should follow this four line format: name, road / street and number, postcode and town/city, country.
Customs and restrictions
As Sweden is within the EU - which is a single market - there is no requirement for any customs documents. The easy transference of goods between EU members is known as 'moving', rather than 'exporting' and as such, there are fewer restrictions. If you are sending anything other than private mail, you'll need to include shipping documents.
That's not to say there are no restrictions, though. Swedish Customs (Tullverket) will not accept delivery of live animals or food items that are derived from animals (without special agreement). The same applies to seeds, vegetables and vegetation. Prohibited items include precious stones and metals, cultured pearls, narcotics, soil, organic chemicals and live trees. Firearms can only be imported with permission from Swedish Police.
If your parcel is intended for a private individual, then rules are slightly more relaxed. It's fine to send cosmetics, perfumes and anything containing alcohol. You may also post sweets, pastries, 'preparations' of fruit, nuts and vegetables. Some prepared animal items are also permitted for private consumption: sausages, cheese, soups, broths, etc. If in doubt, however, it is always worth consulting the authorities.