If you call Sweden’s phone number, you might get to chat with the Prime Minister himself

If you live in the United States, or anywhere outside of Sweden for that matter, you may not know a whole lot about the Nordic country. If you’re willing to learn, however, Sweden now has a phone number that you can call to be connected to a random Swede and ask questions.

The Swedish Tourism Board set up a phone number for to celebrate the 250th anniversary of Sweden becoming the first country to abolish censorship. In the spirit of openness, the country is opening its phone lines to strangers who are curious about the country. When you call the number, someone from Sweden who has the corresponding app on their phone will get your call.

In fact, if you get lucky enough, you could even reach the Swedish Prime Minister, who has reportedly been taking calls and even featured in a video for the program.

“It was great to answer on behalf of Sweden. To me it was natural to help draw attention to Sweden as a tourist destination. Tourism is extremely important to us and the goal is for more people to discover everything Sweden has to offer,” said Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven in a statement to TheLocal.se.

The team has been marketing the idea for a while now to try and get Swedes to sign up to the new service and download the app. According to Björn Ståhl, the Creative Director at INGO Stockholm, few people are more willing to talk about their country than Swedes.

“Every time Swedish people are abroad, we like to talk about what a great country Sweden is to live in. We’re selling our country every time we travel,” he said in an interview with Fast CoCreate.

I gave the number a call to see what I could find out about Sweden, even though I was able to visit a few years ago. A guy named Arash picked up the phone, and was very willing to talk about his country. According to Arash, if you want to visit Sweden, there are three things you should consider. Stockholm is the best place to visit if you’re into history, but if you want to get more of a sense of today’s culture you should head to Malmo.

The third category? Fish. If you want to go to Sweden for the fish, then head to Gothenburg (I can attest to the fact that Swedish fish is very worth the trip). And if you end up wanting to visit Sweden, Arash says the best time is in the Fall. Arash wasn’t overly pushy about people coming to visit Sweden, though. “I prefer L.A.,” he said.

It’s certainly an interesting experience, which could be useful for travelers, would-be immigrants, and others who are simply curious about Sweden. The number itself is +46 771 793 336, and although you do have to pay international calling fees, Google charges 1 cent per minute for making international calls on Google Voice.


‘Return of the Obra Dinn’ compels you to solve the seemingly impossible

Return of the Obra Dinn, the latest game from the mind behind Papers, Please, is an intricately designed logic puzzle that initially feels fairly impossible. Its old school 1-bit Macintosh visuals only add to its marvelous intrigue.

Looking for flexible and inexpensive phone service? Check out our favorite MVNOs

Looking to switch from a major carrier to something a little more affordable? Luckily, there are a ton of great MVNO options to choose from. Check out our guide to the best MVNOs, from Boost Mobile to Google Fi.

The Palm has been revived, and is now available in the U.S. and U.K.

A reboot of the classic Palm is finally here and it's tiny. It syncs to your phone and acts as a secondary device -- with a feature to help you disconnect from technology. The Palm will be available exclusively through Verizon for $350.

Players' 'Red Dead Online' beta progress will carry over to the full release

Red Dead Online will gradually rolled out to Red Dead Redemption 2 players via a beta. We've got all the details about the beta's suite of competitive and cooperative modes, as well as what to expect going forward.

Put down the controller and pick up the best phones for gaming on the go

Which phones are the best if all you want to do is play some mobile games? We've done the hard work and put together a list of the best gaming phones on Android and iOS, so you can keep playing and winning.
Social Media

#ThrowbackThursday is only the start: Instagram hashtags for every day of the week

Not getting your hashtag fill with #ThrowbackThursday or #ManCrushMonday? Here's a list of some of the more popular Instagram hashtags, so you can outfit your next post with the proper tag, regardless of what day it is.
Social Media

Instagram could be making a special type of account for influencers

Instagram influencers fall somewhere between a business profile and a typical Instagram, so the company is working on developing a type of account just for creators. The new account type would give creators more access to analytical data.

Protect your new iPhone with one of our favorite iPhone XR cases

Apple's new iPhone range is the toast of 2018, with beautiful style and more power than you can shake a stick at. But beauty can often be fragile -- keep the damage to a minimum with the best iPhone XR cases.

A dead pixel doesn't mean a dead display. Here's how to repair it

Dead pixel got you down? We don't blame you. Check out our guide on how to fix a dead pixel and save yourself that costly screen replacement or an unwanted trip to your local repair shop.

Apple's iOS 12.1.1 makes it easier to switch cameras in FaceTime

After months of betas, the final version of iOS 12 is here to download. The latest OS comes along with tons of new capabilities, from grouped notifications to Siri Shortcuts. Here are all the features you'll find in iOS 12.

5G Coverage

Curious about 5G and what it means for you? Well here is our awesome one stop shop for all things 5g.

The Galaxy A8s is Samsung's first with a hole-punch camera cutout

Samsung is building exciting, technologically innovative midrange phones, and the latest to be revealed is the new Samsung Galaxy A8s, which may give us an idea of what the new Samsung Galaxy S10 will look like.

Best Products of 2018

Our reception desk has so many brown boxes stacked up, it looks like a loading dock. We’re on a first-name basis with the UPS guy. We get new dishwashers more frequently than most people get new shoes. What we’re trying to say is: We…

Puma revives its classic 1986 smart shoe, complete with high-tech heel hump

More marketing stunt than serious effort to dominate the smart shoe space, Puma is about to re-release its classic RS-Computer Shoe. The high-tech footwear from 1986 was a breakthrough at the time, despite its unsightly heel hump.