Let me explain you how to travel by public transport when visiting Stockholm, travelcards and prices and how to get around by underground, commuter trains, trams, buses and boats as there have been some modifications that simplified the system but still can be tricky for tourists visiting Stockholm.
Let’s get into detail!
What’s New About Public Transport in Stockholm
Public transportation or mass transit as other prefer to call it is managed by the company Storstockholms Lokaltrafik o SL. There are no longer ABC zones into which Stockholm was divided and thus a single ticket covers the entire city of Stockholm and outskirts. You pay a fix price and are able to travel for 75 minutes. Now you are able to travel even to Gnesta, Bålsta or Sigtuna without paying an extra fee.
Some travel categories like “helt” (complete) or “reducerat” (reduced) which granted you access to lower prices have disappeared completely. Now you belong to one of these 4 categories: vuxen, pensionär, student, ungdom – adult, senior, student, youth (20 years or less!).
Children & Public Transport in Stockholm
If you are traveling with kids remember that they need not buy a valid transportation ticket if they are aged 6 years or less. There is no limit for the number of kids that can travel with an accompanying adult. During weekends, from Friday at 12 PM until Sunday at 12 AM every adult can be accompanied by up to 6 children aged 12 or less. This applies also to holidays and the previous day, midsommar and its previous day and from December 23rd at 12 PM until January 6th at 12 AM. So if you are planning to visit Stockholm during Christmas time or New Year your children under 12 need not pay for public transportation.
Public Transportation for Students
When staying in Stockholm as an Erasmus student – or any other kind of exchange program of studies for that matter – you will need a valid SL student card with its logotype on it and study at least 75% of your time so that you can get a 75% discount on public transportation. Unfortunately this discount for students is not available for the regular student traveler visiting Stockholm.
Tickets, Validity and Prices For Public Transport in Stockholm
In Stockholm you can buy single travel tickets for public transport or buy a travel card called SL-Access, top it up with the desired amount and travel until no more funds are available. This is called reskassa and its way cheaper even for the sporadic commuter. The SL-Access card costs 20 SEK (1.90 € / $2.10 /£1.60).
Notice that this card is NOT the tourist visitor card Go City Stockholm Pass which grants you access to museums, sights, attractions and boat trips. The SL-Access complements the Stockholm card offering a cheaper way to travel on public transportation in Stockholm.
In 2022 you cannot buy the SL-Access travel card together with the Go City Stockholm Pass.
Single ticket prices for transportation in Stockholm are as follow:
- Single ticket bought on board (when possible): 50 SEK (4.75 € / $5.20 / £4 ) adults; 34 SEK (3.25 € / $3.50 / £2.75) other categories
- Single ticket bought through the mobile app, ticket vending machine or SL employee: 37 SEK (3.50 € / $3.85 / £3) adults; 25 SEK (2.40 € / $2.60 / £2) other categories
- Single ticket bought with the credit from your previously topped up SL-Access travel card: 37 SEK (3.50 € / $3.85 / £3) adults; 25 SEK (2.40 € / $2.60 / £2) other categories.
As a tourist in Stockholm you will enjoy the sortiment of period tickets – travelcards – which will entitle you to travel for for 24 or 72 hours and 7, 30, 90 or 365 days. After a few years without any rise on their prices this year has seen a minimal increase.
The price for travelcards used on public transportation in Stockholm are as follow:
- 24-hour travelcard: 155 SEK (14.65 € / $16.10 / £12.40) adults and 105 SEK (9.95 € / $10.90 / £8.40) others
- 72-hour travelcard: 310 SEK (29.35 € / $32.10 / £24.85) adults and 210 SEK (19.90 € / $21.75 / £16.85) others. Notice that you get a day for free as the price matches two 24-hour travelcard but you are allowed to travel during 72 hours. If you are planning to buy a 24-hour or 72-hour period ticket you need not buy an SL-Access card because both period tickets exist in a paper version.
- 7-day travelcard: 405 SEK (38.30 € / $42 / £32.45) adults and 270 SEK (25.50€ / $28 / £21.65) others
- 30-day travelcard: 930 SEK (88 € / $96.35 / £74.55) adults and 620 SEK (58.65 € / $64.25 / £49.70) others
- 90-day travelcard: 2770 SEK (255.45 € / $287 / £222) adults and 1810 SEK (171.25 € / $187.55 / £145) others
- 365-day travelcard: 9770 SEK (924.25 € / $1012.45 / £783) adults and 6550 SEK (619.65 € / $678.75 / £524.95) others
* Prices and exchange rate updated on February 2020. Current exchange rate may differ.
If you are interested in traveling by train between Arlanda airport and Stockholm central station you can do it by paying an extra fee. If you already have a valid ticket or enough money in your travelcard to do a single journey you will only need to pay a 120 SEK (11.35 € / $12.45 / £9.65) fee. Otherwise you can buy an airport valid single ticket for 157 SEK (14.85 € / $16.25 / £12.60) adults or 145 SEK (13.75 € / $15 / £11.60) other categories. Those under 18 need not pay an extra fee and can travel to Arlanda airport on a regular single ticket.
With single tickets you are allowed to travel for 75 minutes and with travelcards during the indicated validity period. 24-hour and 72-hour travelcards work in 24-hour periods, that is, upon activation at 2 PM on a given Monday it will be valid until Tuesday 2 PM or Thursday 2 PM respectively. 7-day travelcards count calendar days. Upon activation at 11:50 PM on a given Monday night it will be valid until 11:59 PM on a Sunday night. Is it so? Yes. It experienced it myself when trying to use the cheapest way to travel to Arlanda aiport and not being able to do it because my card had already expired.
What You Can Do in Stockholm With a Travel Ticket
With a valid ticket you can use the underground trains, buses, trams (basically tram line nr. 7 from Sergels torg square to the Island of Djurgården and Waldemarsudde Museum and a great way to visit museums in that area of Stockholm), commuter trains (up to Uppsala – paying a fee – Märsta, Gnesta, Södertälje or Nynäshamn) and boats between some stops on the central islands in Stockholm. These are the five boat lines included in your ticket:
- nr 80 Frihamnen to Nybroplan through Allmänna gränd on Djurgården beside Gröna Lund amusement park. This bus line is perfect if you are arriving in Stockholm on a cruise and during the port of call want to visit the museums in Djurgården. This is the red route from point 1 to point 3 in the next map.
- nr 82 from Slussen to Allmänna gränd on Djurgården with a stop-over on the island of Skeppsholmen. This bus line is also used very frequently to get to the museums in Djurgården from Södermalm or Gamla Stan. This is shown as a blue route from point 5 to point 2 through point 4 in the map.
- nr 84 from Nybroplan to Hammarbysjöstad – available from spring time only – useful to visit Stockholm’s most ecofriendly and sustainable neighborhood known as Hammarbysjöstad. My map features this route in fuchsia from point 3 to a place outside the map.
85 from Klara Mälarstrand– out of service indefinitely since Jan 1 2019 – in the surroundings of Stockholm Central Station and Stockholm’s City Hall bound for Kungholmstorg whose deck is located a little bit beyond Stockholm City Hall. Orange route from point nr 6 in the map to point nr 7, Söder Mälarstrand, and then Kungholmstorg.
- nr 89 connecting Ekerö, the island where Drottningholm palace is located (although ver far away from the boat stop), to the island of Lilla Essingen in central Stockholm. This boat line works on working days only. Not featured in the map as it is not used by tourists.
If you wish to visit Stockholm from the water you will find a lot of boat sightseeing tours and excursions in Stockholm & the archipelago included in the tourist visitor card Go City Stockholm. See my article on How to Buy Your Go City Stockholm Pass With a Discount.
Where to Buy the SL-Access card
You can buy your SL-Access card at the counter on underground stations, SL-centers and kiosks (Pressbyrån, 7-eleven, etc) as well as at some hotels. If you are looking for a reseller near your accommodation in Stockholm, browse through the map located at Stockholm transportation official website, click on the map on the Symbols layer and choose Sales point to show all of them. In this screen capture I chose two Pressbyrån kiosks located near the central station and Cityterminalen where the airport transfer buses depart and arrive.
Identifying Stations and Stops
Underground stops are marked with a big T sign standing for the Swedish word tunnelbana, train stations with a big J for järnvägen, tram stops with an S for spårvagn and the commuter trains are usually know as pendeltåg. Moreover, bus stops show an H sign for hållplats and boat decks are marked with the Swedish word brygga.
Stockholm Public Transport Maps
You can find PDF maps for the entire transportation network in Stockholm on SL official website. For instance: map for commuter trains and underground, underground only, commuter trains only, tram, bus lines in the heart of Stockholm, or in the south of the city and from bus terminals to know the different departure locations.
Planning Your Trips
If you are interested in planning your trips in advance or during your stay you can use the planner on SL website. Providing the current location and the destination you will be given the best and the fastest way to travel between these two points.
This is my complete guide on how to use public transport in Stockholm. I hope I didn’t forget anything. If you have any questions, suggestions or want me to help you plan your stay write me a comment below.
If we top up SL-Access card with money, at the end of our trip can we get a refund of the balance money in the SL card.
Hi Sia Beng,
no, the money left stays there because the card can be used for many years after.
If we top up the SL-Access card with money. Will there be any refund at the end of our visit to Sweden for the money left in the SL-Access card
Sorry for repeated question.
Thank you for usefull information. I looked for the boat line Nr. 80 from FRIHAMNEN to NYBROPLAN, but I did not find it in SL website. Does it work yet?
I found it. The timetable is in Swedish only.
i will be staying in Stockholm for 48 hours only, which one is better , SL Access Card or a Single Journey Card ? Where should i buy it ? Airport or Online ? If online, which website?
Unfortunately there is no 48-hour card. You can buy a 72-hour paper card at the Pressbyrån or 7-eleven kiosk at the airport if you plan to travel from Arlanda Airport to Stockholm by public transportation. Or you can buy it in Stockholm if you plan to travel from Arlanda on a shuttle bus.
The other option is to buy your SL-Card and top it up with money which you will use everytime you access a bus, commuter train, tram, metro, etc.
So in the end it depends on how much you are going to use the public transportation. If you want to use it often without any worries take the 72-hour paper card. Otherwise go for the SL-Access and top it with enough money.
All these cards and tickets must be bought in Sweden. They can’t be bought online.
We will arrive by cruise ship for 1 day July 2020. Is there a ticket vending machine for 75 minute use near the ferry from Saltjoqvarn? Does it accept US credit cards or do we need cash?
Yes, there is one selling point at Elite Hotel Marina Tower near pier 25. They sell single tickets and 24 & 72-hour cards. Regarding credit cards or cash in Sweden I am not sure about US cards but I think it is more difficult to pay in cash in Stockholm that with cards. So I don’t think you’ll have any problem.
Hi Israel, is it possible to pay a single by cash to take the metro or other transport ?
Not on buses (just prepaid card or ticket bought in the app) or light trains.
It only works on the tramway line 7 to Djurgården and in metro stations if you go directly to the personnel by the barriers and buy it from them.
Price would be a little pricier than if you buy it on your phone.
Ok thank you. That’s sort a of problem for me, I arrive in Stockholm next monday, I’ve no valid credit card with me, I’ve to receive a new one in a post office. I’ve nothing else than cash with me I don’t how to manage to take transports.
You’ll have problems everywhere in Stockholm with cash. A lot of restaurants, museums, etc are cash-free.
Check this comment where I speak a bit about prepaid bank cards and where to get one in Stockholm.
That could be useful for you.
Is an Arlanda Express ticket still subject to the additional access fee of 120SEK or is the price already included in the price of the ticket? Thank you.
No, the Arlanda Express is not subjected to the additional fee because its trains do not use the public infrastructure nor Arlanda C station.
They go on other rails and stop at Arlanda Terminal 2, Arlanda Terminal 3,4 & 5.
Hi, we’ll visiting Stockholm for 3 days, and just need cheapest transportation, can you advise us what type of travel pass to use?
If all your traveling is going to be during 72-hour in a row then a 72-hour paper travelcard.
My girlfriend and I will be visiting Stockholm for 3D2N and we plan to visit Archipelago Tour, Vasa Museum, Skansen, and Gamla Stan.
We will be staying in Gamla Stan. Could you advise the cheapest transportation method?
Into the city with shuttle bus from Arlanda to Stockholm and once in the city you could decide to go walking everywhere as your accommodation is central or have a 72-hour paper travel card which includes unlimited transportation in buses, tram, metro, commuter trains and some public boats.
New price for this travel card is 310 SEK in 2020. I just hadn’t time to update de article but will do soon. You can buy it in 7-eleven or Pressbyrån kiosks upon arrival in Stockholm.