Navigate Uppsala: A Comprehensive Guide to Transportation for International Students

Get to know Uppsala, Sweden's vibrant student city, from the inside out. Navigate effortlessly through the city, discover different transportation options.

Navigate Uppsala: A Comprehensive Guide to Transportation for International Students
Photo from Visit Sweden

As an international student in Uppsala, one of the first things you need to navigate is the city's transportation system. This guide will help you understand the options available and how to best use them.

When you decide to make Uppsala your home, understanding the city's transportation options is crucial. But equally important is choosing your accommodation. Hemavi specializes in connecting students with shared accommodations that not only meet their budget but also their lifestyle needs. Hemavi's matchmaking service ensures compatibility between roommates, adding to a fulfilling study experience in Uppsala.

Bicycles: The King of Transportation in Uppsala

In Uppsala, bicycles rule the roads, standing as a testament to the city's commitment to sustainability and healthy living. The city is known for its deep-rooted biking culture, with about 60% of the population opting to pedal their way to work, university, or around town for daily errands.

The cycling infrastructure in Uppsala is extensive, featuring well-marked bike lanes, ample bicycle parking spaces, and even traffic signals specifically designed for cyclists. This well-established network makes it safe and convenient for cyclists to navigate the city, contributing to the large percentage of residents who choose this mode of transportation.

Particularly for students, biking serves as a cost-effective and quick means of commuting. Uppsala's compact nature means that most major locations, including Uppsala University, shopping centers, parks, and libraries, are just a short bike ride away. This saves valuable time that might otherwise be spent in transit, freeing up more hours for study or leisure. Uppsala also offers numerous bike rental and purchase options for students, with many affordable second-hand bikes available. And for those unforeseen circumstances, a host of bike repair shops scattered across the city ensure that help is always at hand.

Additionally, Uppsala's biking culture fosters a sense of community among its residents. Whether it's casual bike rides around the scenic cityscape, joining a local cycling club, or participating in bicycle-related events, cycling offers a unique way to socialize and immerse yourself in the local culture.

Public Transportation: Buses and Trains

While the biking culture in Uppsala is prominent, the city also understands the need for reliable and comprehensive public transportation. Uppsala boasts an extensive and efficient public transport system run by UL (Upplands Lokaltrafik), making it an excellent option for those times when cycling or walking isn't feasible.

UL buses are the lifeline of Uppsala's public transport, connecting all parts of the city with frequent services. The buses are modern, clean, and comfortable, providing a pleasant journey for commuters. Routes are carefully designed to reach key locations like Uppsala University, city center, shopping areas, residential neighborhoods, and major attractions. Bus stops are conveniently located and display real-time information about bus arrivals and departures.

For students looking to explore beyond Uppsala, or those coming from other cities, the train services offer efficient connectivity. Uppsala Central Station is a major hub, with trains operated by SJ (Swedish State Railways) and SL (Stockholm Public Transport). These offer frequent connections to Stockholm, the capital of Sweden, with an average travel time of 40 minutes, making it possible for students to commute daily if necessary. The city also connects with other major destinations in Sweden like Gothenburg, Malmö, and the Arlanda Airport, providing options for further travel or weekend getaways.

Both buses and trains in Uppsala are known for their punctuality and efficiency, a characteristic of Swedish public transportation. They also support sustainable travel, as many buses are electric or hybrid, and train travel has a lower carbon footprint compared to air travel.

For frequent commuters, UL offers various types of cards and tickets, including monthly passes, which can provide significant savings over time. For students, the student travel card (Studentkortet) can be used on all UL buses and trains within Uppsala County. With unlimited rides for a fixed price, it’s a budget-friendly option for students.

Walking: The Charm of a Compact City

Embracing the charm of a compact city, Uppsala offers the simple pleasure of walking as a viable means of transportation. The city is designed such that many amenities - from universities to grocery stores, cafes, libraries, and parks - are within a comfortable walking distance.

The average walk between most student accommodations, particularly those found through Hemavi, and Uppsala University is 20 minutes or less. This proximity not only promotes a healthy lifestyle but also saves on transportation costs. It also offers students the chance to familiarize themselves with the city and its local culture, enriching their overall experience.

Walking around Uppsala reveals the city's historic charm and vibrant cultural scene. Students can enjoy the city's architectural beauty, visit iconic landmarks like the Uppsala Cathedral and Gustavianum, or simply stroll along the Fyris River, turning a daily commute into a delightful experience.

Cars and Taxis

Although less common due to the city's excellent public transport, cycling culture, and walkability, cars do have a place in Uppsala's transportation landscape. Car ownership among students is lower, primarily due to the cost and the availability of more eco-friendly alternatives.

However, taxis offer a practical solution for those occasional needs, such as late-night travel, heavy luggage, or travel to locations outside of the regular public transport routes. Uppsala offers several reliable taxi services, which can be conveniently booked via phone, app, or at taxi stands around the city.

While taxis are more expensive compared to other modes of transportation, they offer convenience and flexibility, especially for unexpected or occasional needs. Still, with the extensive, efficient, and eco-friendly options for getting around Uppsala, most students find they rarely need to rely on cars or taxis.


Whether you prefer biking, taking the bus, walking, or even a combination, Uppsala has an efficient, eco-friendly transportation system that suits everyone's needs. Remember, your experience in Uppsala is also about finding the right place to call home. With Hemavi, you can find that perfect shared accommodation that fits your lifestyle and keeps you close to your desired means of transportation.