I have to do math every time I’m in the store. Right now, according to Google, the dollar is worth 6.29 Swedish kronor, or SEK. That’s better than it was a few weeks ago. It used to be about 6 SEK even. So when I’m in the store, I’m constantly dividing prices by 6.
In general, goods and services in Sweden cost more than in the states, mostly because everything is heavily taxed. Luckily, all the taxes are included in the printed prices. Also, since one krona is only worth about 15 cents, almost all prices are in full kronor. They do have “cents” (called ore), but I’ve only seen a 50 ore piece so far; they don’t break it up smaller than that.
So, ok. I can divide things by 6. Where it gets dicey is when I’m in the grocery store. It’s hard to get a handle on how food prices compare to the US, because not only is the money in SEK, the food is in kilograms and liters.
As an example, today I stopped by an outdoor produce stand across from the train station in Lund. They had the cutest little leeks, and they were local (bonus!) I decided to buy some to make potato and leek soup. I think the leeks were around 16 kronor/kg, which is like $2.ahighnumber/kg, which is like less than $1.5/lb, right? (this is how my mind works…I really think “two-point-something-high divided by two-ish, ok, call it three divided by two so I know my answer is going to be high, that’s good, don’t want to underestimate the price…man, that’s a good deal for leeks!”)
It is a good price for leeks – they’re normally like $2.29 at Safeway. By the way, according to Google, the leeks were $1.16/lb, so my estimate was quite high. But I would rather guess too high than too low.