If you have a job in Sweden, you get paid on the 25th of every month (or the weekday closest to the 25th if it falls on a weekend/holiday). Just once a month. None of this weekly paycheck thing or the 15th and 30th of the month that we’re used to in the US.
This means that people are usually pretty poor by the weekend leading up to the 25th of the month. Including this blogger. In fact, being poor on the days leading up to the 25th of the month is truly Swedish. 🙂So what better thing to do than to celebrate and blow all your cash on the weekend you do get paid? That’s what people do on “lönhelg” — pay weekend. Every bar you go to, every restaurant you dine at, and every store you shop at is going to be p-a-c-k-e-d with people.
IKEA is a great example. For some reason, on the weekend after payday (“lönhelg”), every IKEA you go to is going to be jam-packed with people who all of a sudden realized that they need a new bed or a new bookshelf for their home. I don’t know how it works, but it’s consistent.
Those of us who’ve lived here for a while have grown used to getting paid once a month. I budget my money and will try to hold large purchases to the end of the month. I try to pay my mortgage on the 27th of every month and hold off on making credit card payments until the last of the month. I guess I’m truly Swedish in that way, too.
(yes, that is my money in the picture and no, you can’t have it – wait for your next pay day!)