Go North: Norway, Sweden & Denmark
Know Before You Go
For an epic trip with zero stress and infinite holy s#!t moments, get familiar with the information below. Seeing the world should be fun, not stressful, which is why we’ve written this guide for you and are available 24/7 so all you have to do is travel. Now, it’s time to do a happy dance and make this trip ULTIMATE.
Complete Your Checklist
Before heading to the airport, complete the tasks below and check them off in your Online Account Checklist. If you have any questions, give us a call at 800-766-2645. We’re available 24/7 to make sure you have the Best. Trip. Ever.
- Verify your passport: Your passport must be valid for 6 months after the tour return date. No visa is required for this trip if you are a U.S. Citizen
- Join the Facebook group: Join your private Facebook group as soon as it opens! It’s how you can meet other travelers and see announcements from your Tour Director. Call us at 800-766-2645 if you’re having trouble joining.
- Request a roommate:: Double check with us and your Tour Director that they have your rooming status on file. We will assign a roommate for you if you do not submit a specific request.
- Personalize your trip: Travel Insurance is not available for purchase on tour, and the price of Optional Excursions increases after departure. We suggest logging in to your Online Account now to add these items.
- Call your bank: Let your bank and credit card company know of your travel plans so you can withdraw cash and use your debit/credit cards abroad. Otherwise, you risk your account being blocked.
Pack Like a Pro
Your airline ticket includes one checked bag (approx. 27" x 21" x 14") but years of customer feedback tells us that the lighter you pack, the better. Double check the luggage size requirements on your airline’s website, but we recommend traveling with one small backpack/purse, and a smaller carry-on suitcase (22” x 14” x 9”) or bag. See more packing tips below:
Standard packing suggestions:
- 1 jacket (light/rain jacket if June – August, thicker/waterproof jacket for all other months)
- Comfortable walking shoes
- Waterproof shoes
- 1-2 pairs long pants / shorts
- 3-4 shirts / t-shirts
- 1 nicer outfit for Farewell Dinner or a night out
- Underwear and socks
- Hat & gloves (for cooler months)
- Sunscreen and sunglasses
- Re-usable water bottle
- Toiletries, medicine
- Phone or camera
- Debit / Credit cards and cash
- Adapter / Converter – type “C”, “F”, or universal
Note: We recommend packing lightweight, loose-fitting clothing that can be easily layered to accommodate varying temperatures, as well as a light jacket or rainwear.
Check your online account 30 days prior to departure for your flight itinerary and confirmation number. You can check in to your flight 24 hours prior to departure. If you prefer to check in at the airport, plan to arrive 2.5 – 3 hours before departure.
- If your flight is cancelled or delayed: Don’t worry! We design the first day of tour as an arrival day in case of flight delays or cancellations. Work with the airline to get rebooked on the next available flight, then let your Tour Director know your new arrival time
- If you slept in and missed your flight: You should still talk to the airline and see if they can get you on the next available option. Tears may help in this case…
Note: All flight information is online (e-ticket) via your account and the airline’s website. You will not receive a physical paper ticket from us.
Arriving in Copenhagen
Your Tour Director will communicate on Facebook or email about where to meet them at the airport. This is another reason you should join your Facebook group.
Meet Your Tour Director and Fellow Travelers
Your Tour Director will also tell you best way to communicate with them during the trip; they will be with your group from start to finish so if there is anything you need, connect with them. Concerned about international cellular data and staying in touch with your group? Check out “Phones and Electronics” further down in this guide.
Use Your Phone, Internet, and Electronics
We recommend you get an international data plan from your cell phone provider. The most common options are the Travel Pass with Verizon, or purchasing a personal hot spot with your carrier. For your cell phone and any other electronics you bring abroad, you will also need a converter/adapter. Read more tips below about using your phone and electronics abroad:
- Wi-Fi is available in most hotels, though some charges may apply.
- There is no Wi-Fi on any of the motor coaches.
- Please contact your mobile service provider for information on roaming charges.
Note: You need to use a type “C” or “F” adapter on this tour. A staff favorite is also the “Targus World Power Travel Adapter” ($20, Amazon.com).
On The Ground
Manage Your Money
The currencies used on this trip vary. In Copenhagen it’s the Danish Krone (DKK), in Stockholm it’s the Swedish Krona (SEK), and in Bergen it’s the Norwegian Krone (NOK or kr). See more tips below for using money abroad:
- When exchanging money for this trip, better rates are usually found overseas, but it’s worth ordering some currency from your local bank to use when you first arrive.
- Bring debit and credit cards with you, which can be used to withdraw cash at local banks as needed.
- You can use most debit/credit cards at ATMs on the international networks Cirrus and Plus, but be wary of fees
- Budget around $80-$100 per day for meals, drinks, souvenirs, and tips or extra activities
- Tipping is not customary, but many locals leave 1-2 krone or krona for exceptional service
- We recommend tipping your Tour Director $44 - $66 at the end of the trip, and $1-2 in local currency for local guides
Note: Call your bank(s) ahead of time to let them know of your travel plans to avoid any complications while on the road.
On this trip you’ll experience standard rooming, unless you purchased a private room upgrade. Standard rooming is in European hotels or boutique hostels and you’ll room with up to six fellow EF Ultimate Break travelers of the same gender per room. What to expect for standard rooming:
- 4-5 fellow EF Ultimate Break roommates of the same gender
- Small, boutique hotels and hostels
- One private bathroom per room that you’ll share with your roommates
- Limited WiFi connection
- Limited air conditioning – AC is popular in the U.S., but not in Europe!
If you have any questions about your rooming status or want to request a specific roommate, call us at 800-766-2645, or connect with your Tour Director.
Getting from A to B
Transfers between cities are via train or plane, and can take anywhere between 2-6 hours. You’ll also receive a public transportation pass in each city that offers them. Transportation in cities that offer no pass may require more walking. Prepare to walk/hike between 4-8 miles per day, especially when sightseeing and on your hikes.
Optimize Your Free Time
If you did not purchase EF Ultimate Break Optional Excursions before the trip began, you can log into your Online Account and do so on tour. Or, talk to your Tour Director on tour and they can help you get enrolled. If you’d like to plan something else during your free time, connect with your Tour Director before doing so; they sometimes arrange extra activities for the group during free time. Prices for these optional excursions will increase on tour, so please check your online account for available add ons.
Live Like a Local
You’re visiting three major cities of Scandinavia, two of which are capital cities of their country! Known for being some of the happiest cities in the world, Copenhagen, Stockholm, and Bergen will impress you with their colorful homes, cuisine, fjords, and more. Here are just a few expert tips to help you appreciate all that Scandinavia offers and truly live like a local:
- “Copenhagen”’s name loosely translates to “merchant’s harbor”, and you’ll see why - the canals of Copenhagen are a staple of the city, and part of its unique charm
- Scandinavia’s food scene, especially in Copenhagen, if something to write home about. So go ahead and try that hot dog, or pickled herring, or pickled herring on top of a hot dog…
- “Hygge”, pronounced hoo-gah, is a Danish practice and way of life in finding joy in everyday moments. Hygge is about celebrating coziness, warmth and family.
- Biking in Scandinavia is a way of life. If you have the chance, rent a bike and explore the streets by cycle! Just be sure to obey the local biking laws.
- Fun fact, Stockholm is spread across 14 islands with 57 bridges connecting the islands. Try to count them as you cross!
- Denmark, Sweden, and Bergen are expensive countries. You’ll find the quality and way of life is beyond what you could imagine, but sometimes it comes at a price. Prepare your wallet for those 5 Krona coffees.
- Scandinavians are known for being nice and polite, but not necessarily outgoing. Don’t be put off if locals are a bit more reserved, just smile and greet with a friendly hej!
Wine and Dine
Loaded with Michelin-Star restaurants, Scandinavia is a foodie heaven. From food carts, to outdoor food markets, to gourmet restaurants and more, you’ll sample a variety of local dishes on your trip that will blow you away. Read on for more tips, tricks, and delicacies you must try.
- Smørrebrød: This is Denmark’s staple meal and is an open-face sandwich, usually rye bread, topped with fish or meat, vegetables, and sauce on top
- Rød Pølse: Or, red sausage - this cheap treat is typically served on a hot dog bun with ketchup or mustard, and can be found everywhere!
- Shawarma or Falafel: In the 1960s and 70s, Copenhagen had an influx of immigrants from Turkey, Pakistan, Egypt and more. One of the results was delicious shawarma and falafel!
- Fiskefrikadeller: Even if you’re not a fish fan, you have to try this fish cake mix of white fish, onion, parsley lemon, salt, and pepper
- Salmon: Norway has the world’s best salmon. Enough said.
- Brown Cheese: Made from the throwaway parts of cheese and melted into a sweet, salty, fudgy composition, this cheese in Norway isn’t actually cheese at all. Try it on your toast at breakfast!
- Pickled Herring: Remember, you’re surrounded by the sea, so when in Rome, right? Try herring on top of bread, or with a salad and other toppins!
- Norwegian Waffles: Try one as a snack while you’re cruising through Bergen’s fjords!
- Kjøttboller: Otherwise known as Swedish Meatballs are best served with gravy, mashed potato, and lingonberries.
- Raggmunk: Similar to a latke, the Swedish Raggmunk is best served savory (with sour cream), or sweet (with applesauce). Why not try both?
Note: Vegetarian options will likely be available but let your Tour Director know of any dietary restrictions ahead of time so they can plan accordingly.
Speak the Language
Even though locals in Scandinavia have excellent English, attempting the local language goes a long way when navigating a city and interacting with people. Practice these basic phrases in Danish, Swedish, and Norwegian to get started:
- Hello = Hej / Hej / Hei
- Goodbye = Hej hej / Hej da / Hadet
- Thank You = Tak / Tack så mycket / Takk
- Yes = Ja / Ja / Ja
- No = Naj / Nej / Nei
- Where is ___? = Hvor er…? / Vart ligger…? / Hvor er…?
Health and Safety
It’s important to maintain your health and stay safe while abroad. From your first flight all the way through to your farewell dinner, drink plenty of water, get sleep when you can, and don’t hesitate to reach out to your Tour Director or your Trip Consultant if you need a helping hand. Keep these extra tips in mind so you can #travelsmart:
- Keep your bag/purse in front of you and your phone zipped inside when you’re not using it. Leave your laptop at home, store valuables at the hotel in locked luggage or the safe deposit box. Refrain from carrying large sums of money or wearing valuable jewelry.
- Use the buddy system. Stay in groups and watch out for each other, especially at night—no one gets left behind!
- Before you go out, grab a business card at your hotel so that you always have the address handy for getting back later.
- At the end of a night out, use trusted transportation like a licensed taxi or Uber, and always have cash on hand.
- Be smart about alcohol consumption. Watch your drinks and don’t accept drinks from people you don’t know. Don’t leave the bar alone with someone you just met.
- Save our 24/7 number in your phone: +1–617–619–1411
We’re so glad you chose to travel with us and are now part of the EF Ultimate Break family! We'll look for your post-card in the mail, and your #thisisultimate tags on Instagram. Cheers to the Best. Trip. Ever.