Flygskam – Why Swedes Are Opting for Train Over Plane

Stockholm Arlanda Airport

By Anna Breuer on 11 August 2019
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A growing number of Swedes is giving up flying because of the carbon emissions caused by flying and there’s even a word in Swedish –  flygskam, or flight shame – which describes the feeling of being embarrassed for flying because of its environmental impact.

Along with #jagstannarpåmarken, or #stayontheground, the two have become popular social media buzzwords.

The change in travel habits comes amidst growing public concern about climate change.

A survey published in June by SJ, a major rail operator in Sweden, found that 37% of Swedes chose to travel by rail instead of air, an increase of 11 percentage points since fall 2018 and 17 since early 2018.  The shift is borne out by the railroad’s increasing passenger numbers, with the total number of journeys on SJ increasing from 2017 to 2018 by 5% and an additional 8% year-over-year increase for Q1 2019.

It’s also supported by a commensurate drop in air travel.  Domestic passenger travel fell 8%  in the first four months of 2019, according to figures published by Swedavia, the state-owned company that owns and operates Stockholm-Arlanda, Stockholm-Bromma, Göteborg Landvetter, Åre Ostersund, and four other busy airports in the country.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

Accura News

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