It’s a well-known fact that Sweden has one of the highest number of parental leaves in the world, where parents are entitled to 480 days of paid leaves when a child is born or adopted. As a new mum experiencing parenthood in Sweden, I found the culture and benefits here to be interesting and vastly different from where I used to live in Singapore. Here are some other benefits which I find to be enjoyable as a new parent living here in Stockholm.
Parents with prams can board all buses for free
Yes, it’s true! Traveling everywhere with babies in a prams is a common sight in Stockholm, so I actually found this to be amazing as it allows the parents to board the buses quickly from the middle doors, and skip the hassle of paying the bus drivers.
Free health check-ups
Healthcare costs are high where I come from, so much so that people often say we just can’t afford to fall sick. It surprised me when I was pregnant in Stockholm and all medical check-ups and the childbirth itself was free-of-charge. Infant care is also free and they provide free Vitamin D drops until the age of two.
Child-friendly public areas
Stockholm has no shortage of public playgrounds, pram ramps and designated parking spots for prams. In most shopping malls, it’s quite easy for us to find a nursing room or diaper changing tables in the bathrooms.
In Singapore, education for a child is really costly even from infant care onwards so it’s a relief to learn that we have the choice to send my child to a preschool for a maximum amount of SEK 1,287 a month, which we will be able to offset using the monthly child allowance. And we won’t have to worry so much about setting aside a huge sum of money for my child’s future education as schools for children aged 6-19 is totally free of charge.
Another reason why we enjoy parenthood in Stockholm is due to the changing seasons every few months. Its not only beautiful to look at but also the baby generally sleeps better in the cold weather and we all get to rest more too!
Do you have any experiences about parenthood in Sweden, please share those in the comment section below.