Rail and bus travel in Sweden
Sweden has an extensive railway network. Most major lines are operated by the government-owned company SJ, with Veolia as a private option.
Regional and local public transport
Regional public transport, both rail and bus, is usually operated by companies contracted by the counties, under the brand name of the county owned traffic company.
Tickets are normally sold by the county owned traffic company. Ticket rules vary substantially. For regional trains it is normally possible to buy a ticket through SJ (see below) even if it is a county operated train.
There should be more information in the articles about the regions in Sweden.
Resrobot is a search engine for all public transport inside Sweden.
To buy a railway ticket from SJ, or to obtain information, phone +46 771 75 75 75 or check their website. As of summer 2009, the cheapest SJ tickets are released exactly 90 days before departure, so time your online ticket purchases carefully if your itinerary is set and don't buy tickets earlier than 90 days before your trip. SJ recently started auctioning last minute tickets on the Swedish eBay site Tradera (site only in Swedish), available from 48 until 6 hours before departure. Because point-to-point tickets are quite expensive, for more train journeys in Sweden InterRail (for European citizens) or Eurail (for non-European citizens) pass might be useful.
Unlike most European countries, however, bicycles are not allowed on any trains, except for foldable bicycles, which count as regular luggage.
MTR Express is a fast train between Stockholm and Göteborg. http://mtrexpress.se
The Blue train (Blå tåget) is a luxury train going Gothenburg-Skovde-Stockholm-Uppsala.
Swebus and gobybus runs a number of bus lines in the southern third of the country, Götaland and Svealand. They tend to cost less than going by train, if you can't take advantage of SJ's youth discounts. Y-buss and Härjedalingen operate between Stockholm and Norrland.
Swebus also operates from Stockholm and Gothenburg to Oslo. At the county level, buses are a good method for travelling short distances from town to town, as they are more frequent and cheaper than trains. It is best to check with the local transportation authority for routes and schedules.
Flygbussarna, Airport Coaches, are a private enterprise specializing in transfer between airports (or ferry terminals) and city centres.
If you plan to use city buses, check out the local arrangements for how to obtain tickets. In many Swedish cities it is not possible to buy tickets for the city buses at the bus. In this case neither cash nor bank or credit cards are accepted. Instead you need an electronic bus card, a special card for each region, that sometimes also has to be filled with a minimum amount of money, typically 100 SEK. This bus card can sometimes be obtained only at dedicated ticket offices, not at the bus, but can often be filled with money for travel at local shops or refill machines that are found at public places.
This observation does not apply to countryside and long distance buses, where you normally can buy tickets from the driver.
For trams, there are (Gothenburg/Norrköping) normally machines onboard or (Stockholm) salesperson onboard. For Stockholm metro and commuter trains, tickets are sold at the station entrances.
In general, tourists are advised to buy one-day or multi-day passes which give free access to local public traffic.