News blog

Oct. 22, 2018

12 Swedish phrases you must learn to speak like a real Swede

1. “Det är lagom”

Means: It’s just enough


Swedes are rarely fond of things being too much or too little, why this is a very useful expression to declare that something is just enough. Not to be confused with things being extremely perfect, as Swedes are hard to impress and tend to not get over excited. Also, of course not to be confused with Swedish drug addicts and alcoholics being moderate.



2. “Smakar det så kostar det”

Means: If it tastes, it costs


This is a useful phrase to console a person that payed a bit too much but hopefully got something of good quality in return.



3. “Hur är läget?”

Means: How are things going?


A typically Swedish way to say “how are you doing?”.



4. “Typ”

Means: Sort of, kind of, ish


A word used by Swedes in almost every sentence to keep their statements a bit more open and not as an exact description of reality.



5. “Smaken är som baken”

Means: The taste is like the butt


This rhyming phrase is used to imply that a person has bad taste and therefore a taste divided from my own. As the butt is divided.



6. “Jag vabbar idag”

Means: I’m staying at home from work today with my sick child


Sweden has one of the most generous parental benefits in the world. The Swedish parent can stay at home with the sick child and still get payed from “Försäkringskassan”. VAB is short for “Vård Av Barn” which directly translated means “Care Of Child”.



7. “Jag pallar inte”

Means: I’m not up for it


A useful expression for a Swede who doesn’t feel like doing something or facing something.



8. “Det är en dag imorgon också”

Means: There’s a day tomorrow as well


An expression used to state that it’s time to go home when you’re out in the evening at a party or a get-together. However, this expression is of course never used by Swedish drug addicts or alcoholics.



9. “Sakta i backarna”

Means: Slow down in the hills


A phrase used to tell someone to hold it or take it easy. Sort of like the American expression “hold your horses”.



10. “Hen”

Means: Him or her


This modern Swedish word is used to describe humans with equality perspective. By not assuming that we’re talking about a man or a woman when the gender is actually unknown, could be either one or could be a person who does'nt identify themselves as neither a man or a woman.



11. “Ingen dans på rosor”

Means: Not a dance on roses


When life is hard on you, this Swedish phrase says it all.



12. “Fan, vad fett!”

Means: Damn, that’s fat!


When Swedes talk about fat it’s more likely that the conversation is about something that is “awesome” and not about body weight.