Swedes connect with foreigners through phone service

World Today

Sweden’s Tourism Association is launching a unique new program aimed at promoting foreign interest in Swedish culture.

You can now call up Swedish citizens at random to learn more about their history and lifestyle – or to have a casual conversation.

CCTV America’s Jim Spellman reports.

Swedes connect with foreigners through phone service

Sweden's Tourism Association is launching a unique new program aimed at promoting foreign interest in Swedish culture. You can now call up Swedish citizens at random to learn more about their history and lifestyle - or to have a casual conversation. CCTV America's Jim Spellman reports. Sweden is known for its beautiful scenery, Volvo cars, and Ikea, but many of us don't actually know much about the Scandinavian country. Sweden now says it's the only country that will connect you to a random citizen. The goal is that foreign callers may learn more about Sweden and come visit. People in Sweden who want to participate in the program simply download an app, and calls are automatically routed to their mobile phones. When I phoned the program, our random Swede David and I chatted about Swedish pop music, U.S. politics, and computers. He even taught me a little Swedish. When speaking to Oskar Malm Wiklund, he taught me about historic parts of Stockholm. Wiklund says he has taken calls from as far away as Canada and Dubai. Since going live on Wednesday, the Swedish number has connected more than 20,000 calls.

Sweden is known for its beautiful scenery, Volvo cars, and Ikea, but many of us don’t actually know much about the Scandinavian country. Sweden now says it’s the only country that will connect you to a random citizen. The goal is that foreign callers may learn more about Sweden and come visit.

People in Sweden who want to participate in the program simply download an app, and calls are automatically routed to their mobile phones.

When I phoned the program, our random Swede David and I chatted about Swedish pop music, U.S. politics, and computers. He even taught me a little Swedish.

When speaking to Oskar Malm Wiklund, he taught me about historic parts of Stockholm. Wiklund says he has taken calls from as far away as Canada and Dubai.

Since going live on Wednesday, the Swedish number has connected more than 20,000 calls.