So, what’s the big deal about the Swedish personnummer or, as I call it, the thing that you need to do just about anything in Sweden?
It is the social security number, and you receive that when you get in the national population register. Officially, it makes it easier to subscribe to services and similar. As a matter of fact, you need it for:
- signing a subscription to the gym or for the phone (some of them might offer a 6- or 12-months subscription w/o a personnummer)
- getting member cards in shops
- requesting a Swedish ID card, which you need if you want a Swedish bank account with full functions
In order to get a personnummer, you need to meet certain specific requirements (check the Skatteverket website), then you can apply for one (it’s not automatic). Here are some guidelines.
First of all, you need to be staying at least one year. Note that one academic year is less than 12 months, so technically you cannot apply. I heard of people who managed to get a personnummer anyway, but they might have applied under different condition (e.g. self-sufficient for EU citizens).
If you are a Nordic citizen, your national ID card (or passport) is enough. If you are/were married, you also need documents about your civil status and, if applicable, the birth certificates of your children.
If you are a EU/EEA citizen, then you need your national ID card (or passport). You should have a letter of admission where it states that the study period is longer than 12 months, and you have to be enrolled (so you can only ask after registration at KTH). If you are/were married, you also need documents about your civil status and, if applicable, the birth certificates of your children. You need to bring your European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) and to sign stating that you have sufficient funds for your stay.
If you are from outside EU/EEA, then you will need your passport and Swedish Residence permit card. If you are/were married, you also need documents about your civil status and, if applicable, the birth certificates of your children.
In all cases, you should always bring original documents.
You can wait for the on-campus kiosk (simple way), or go to a tax agency office (here is the one near campus). Once you fill in the form and hand in all the relative documents, you will get it in the mail in 10-30 days depending on the Skatteverket workload.
Don’t confuse it with the T-number, which is assigned by KTH if you don’t have a personnummer. Once you get your personnummer, you should notify KTH so that they can update your profile. It’s also necessary in order to be recognized as student.
Swedish ID card
If you did all this, then you are eligible for a Swedish ID card. To get it, you have to visit one of the offices that issue the card (here is the Stockholm one). You need to bring your passport (national ID is not accepted) and the receipt for the application fee payment. The application fee is 400 SEK, and you can pay it with a 50 SEK fee at e.g. forex (or in other ways I don’t recall).
If you are from outside EU/EEA, you might want to check this page for detailed instructions on how to identify yourself with your Residence permit.