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Talk:Norway

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"Smoking tobacco, or even importing tobacco is completely illegal under the Communist government of Norway"

I don't know who wrote this, but this is absolute nonsense. Smoking is banned in all public places, but you are allowed to smoke outside and in private homes.

http://www.norway.org/News/archive/2004/200403smoking.htm

There is no Wikitravel:CIA World Factbook 2002 import for Norway because the page existed before the factbook import began.


This line makes no sense. Free everything = low unemployement?

Politically, it is dominated by a widespread and continued support for the Scandinavian model, which means high taxes and high government spending to support free schools, free healthcare, an efficient welfare system, and many other benefits. As a result the unemployment rate in Norway is low.

Where is this line? - Andrew Haggard (Sapphire) 14:44, 5 June 2006 (EDT)
This is easily explained - the big government employs a lot of people in their bloated bureaucracy - it's their way of making the statistics shine in their favour. If the government bureaucracy was slimmed down, unemployment would be radically high. 81.0.175.34 17:08, 21 June 2006 (EDT)

also health care is NOT free. norwegians have to pay to go to the doctor. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by 94.18.129.112 (talkcontribs)

(The following is true for Norwegian citizens and people in the country for longer than six months - for example, exchange students. If you are here for less than six months, I'm not sure what applies.): That statement (health care not being free) is misleading - you pay a fee for the doctor, who has the option of giving you a ('blue') prescription for medicine, which means you pay a highly discounted price at the pharmacy. You may also get a 'white' prescription, which means you pay full price. This seems to depend on the medicine, ie. whether the government has it listed as a 'normal', in-stock medicine, or something which will be ordered from another country, as well as on the doctor - I'm not sure how he decides and how much lee-way he has in making his own decision. You also only pay for doctor's consultations and certain prescriptions up to an amount (around 1800Nok in 2010) for the year, after which you show your 'free card' (in the past you had to apply for this, you now get it automatically), and don't pay anything. I assume that this includes hospitalization. However, it EXCLUDES dentistry (everyone will tell you this is expensive in N) and things like physiotherapy (physiotherapy has a separate "free card", which applies after you have paid around 2500Nok for physiotherapy in the year.) "Free cards" expire at the end of the calendar year. I'm not sure whether going on exchange is 'officially' considered travel (to us students it is!), so I'll leave this in the discussion.

cities

I reduced the list to 9 per our current policy, but if it's not the perfect 9, feel free to swap some out for others - but please don't exceed 9 total cities.

For reference, I removed:

  • Sandnes - Stavanger's twin city has less going for it, but still holds attractions worthy of a side trip from Stavanger.
  • Aalesund (Ålesund) - a splendid Art Nouveau centre in the very western outskirts of Norway? Yes! Ålesund is one of the most unique towns in Norway
  • Alta - "The Aurora Borealis City", and the largest city in Finnmark
  • Bodø - the gateway to the magnificent Lofoten islands the place of Saltstraumen
  • Hammerfest - the northernmost city in the world
  • Kirkenes - the gateway to Russia is further east than Istanbul or Kiev
  • Kongsberg - old mining town, now a center for hi-tech industry
  • Lillehammer - picturesque former Winter Olympics site
I moved Lillehammer to "other destinations", replacing Hessdalen valley (which is in no way a destination for tourists)
  • Molde - jazz festival in July, Atlanterhavsveien a short drive away
  • Tønsberg - Norway's oldest town has a seaside location with a lot going for it
  • Svelvik - Small village south of Drammen, with the one of the highest concentrations of drugs in Norway.

Thanks! – cacahuate talk 18:18, 18 May 2007 (EDT)

I swapped out Drammen for Alesund, which really is quite remarkable. Jpatokal 23:54, 18 May 2007 (EDT)
  • Drammen - Known as industrial and grimy, but recent refurbishing has made Drammen an enjoyable side trip from Oslo.

I have made changes to the list of cities. The list contained 12 cities before I reduced it. If you don't like my selection bring up the discussion here! ViMy 18:13, 25 September 2009 (EDT)

Hey, thanks ViMy, I'd personally substitute Drammen for something else, it's so close to Oslo and really not that interesting. How about Ålesund (a city, so doesn't really work under other destinations) or Kirkenes? --Stefan (sertmann) Talk 04:09, 26 September 2009 (EDT)
ViMy, you should have proposed here first before changing things... and I'll second Sertmann, Alesund is a city and more worthwhile than Drammen. Jpatokal 06:56, 26 September 2009 (EDT)
I picked some of the "larger" cities. And also tried to find cities all over the country. I was in doubt regarding Drammen. The reason why I mowed Ålesund to other destination, was becouse Lillehammer allready was on that list. ViMy 07:08, 26 September 2009 (EDT)
  • I have reduced number of cities to nine, once again. Remowe Alta witch was added by someone. Should there be made changes to the list? Remember only nine cities! ViMy 06:50, 4 July 2010 (EDT)

Personal opinions

I have removed this line from the article:

Buy at least one 19-30 kr hot-dog - they are referred to as "Kjempegrill" (Not only do they taste good, they also give you an excuse to go inside when you are cold and waiting for the tube) They are great for keeping the low blood sugar troll at bay. Remember to put on a lot of cucumber mix.

airport

Could anyone tell me, why it's not a good idea to hitchhike out of the airport? Jo.

It's not a bad idea, but its likely to take time. You'll be likely to see friendly, waving faces passing you by for a couple of hours. If you have to, it pays off to be upfront asking people on their way to the parking lot --Jonhov 08:24, 8 July 2008 (EDT)Jon

by train

This section was rather messy with pieces of info here and there. I tried to put the main info on top and evaluations and opinions in the end. Hope this was okay.--Jonhov 09:08, 8 July 2008 (EDT)

by boat

Wihin Norway

The following senence is in my opinion wrong:

On board the ferry are a number of restaurants, bars, casinos, cinemas and also a stage show to keep you entertained during the journey.

There are no casinos on these ship, that would be ilegall in Norway. As far as I know there are no stage show either. Unless someone protest I think this sentences should be changed. I guess that the person writing this confuses Hurtigruten with ordinary cruiseships. ViMy 19:13, 17 January 2009 (EST)

It's not casino's, but they have those money games on all the ferries I've been on (admittedly only 3 - Moss-Horten,Strömstad-Sandefjord,Tromsø-Finnsness) where you try to make the coins drop over a ledge by dropping them at the right time - I think that's what refered to? --Stefan (sertmann) Talk 05:23, 24 August 2009 (EDT)

Other destinations

I swapped out Svartisen for Jostedalsbreen. Since we have no aticle for Svartisen, but we have for Jostedalsbreen. Also Jostedalsbreen is the bigest glacier in Norway. And is more known than Svartisen. ViMy 17:14, 20 March 2009 (EDT)

About destinations: You should definitely mention the Golden Route (http://www.visitalesund-geiranger.com/en/The-Geiranger-fjord/Top-10-Real-Experiences-in-Geirangerfjord/Top-10---National-Tourist-Route/)
The Atlanterhavsveien as "The most beautiful road in the world" is strongly overestimated!It is a commercial trick to attract turist to this less spectacular part of western Norway. It should rather be the Trollstigen. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by 80.203.120.34 (talkcontribs)
If a day or two go by and no one objects feel free to plunge forward and make this change. Thanks for taking the time to discuss on the talk page first. -- Ryan • (talk) • 12:04, 19 September 2010 (EDT)

AutoPass RFID box

Can somebody add some more information (or a hyperlink to more information) about the mentioned "AutoPass RFID box" ?

Respect: real life experience?

The paragraph about 'Respect' starts with: "Norwegians are generally sincere and polite, though small talk often doesn't come easy – it's usually up to you to break the ice (sometimes literally)."

How many people have experienced this themselves? I'm wondering wheter this is just a cliché, as my experience is quite the contrary: Many Norwegians like talking to strangers, are interested in travellers, small talk happens all the time. Same for several other travellers I met in Norway. Maybe there is a difference between regular travellers and people who travel in a sporty way, e.g. hiking, cycling, skiing or by kajak.

So, does anyone have personal, real-life experience with this? 147.181.20.71 04:47, 24 August 2009 (EDT)

I've spent a fair deal of time in Norway as my stepdad and his family are Norwegian, And I think it's fairly accurate description. This stuff always depend on the circumstances - but generally it's not far off imho. --Stefan (sertmann) Talk 05:15, 24 August 2009 (EDT)
I think it's quite true as well, Norwegians do not seem to take the initiative in these kind of things... They are mostly on the background. Of course it's a stereotype and not true for everyone, but that's unavoidable. Globe-trotter 12:59, 24 August 2009 (EDT)

Whaling

I have tried to balance the comments biased in favour of whaling ("don't mention it or you'll make people cross") with a comment in favour of whales. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by 84.48.122.75 (talkcontribs)

The point is really to let a traveller know that taking a point of view may be confrontational. If they choose confrontation, then that is surely their position to take. I agree that saying that Norwegians are well informed implies that visitors may not be. This probably needs to be changed, and I'll have a shot at it. --inas 17:12, 24 January 2010 (EST)
I think it's quite fair to imply that visitors are ill-informed. Most Norwegians I know can take all the usual arguments, rip them apart, and stuff them in the toilet in a matter of minutes, unless you really know what you are talking about, and by that mean much more than watching a few Discovery Channel features. If you've worked with whale conservation for years, you can probably manage a draw, but otherwise expect your self-confidence to take a beating. Although in major population centres you'll often find support from Norwegians with equally well informed opinions against whaling - in essence, don't get into such arguments unless you have intricate knowledge about the subject, cause most Norwegians does. --Stefan (sertmann) talk 17:31, 24 January 2010 (EST)
Seriously, this is all bordering on the obvious. If a country has a custom or a way of life that you disagree with, taking on the issue is likely to attract a controversy and confrontation, and is unlikely to win friends and influence people. If you want to have the argument and risk confrontation, do so. If you want to avoid controversy, avoid talking about subjects as a visitor that a local may take as an attack on local culture. To stereotype the visitor as unknowledgable is every bit as bad a stereotyping the local culture. Not all visitors are even going to be anti-Norwegian whaling, so even that supposition is wrong. --inas 17:59, 24 January 2010 (EST)

The "respect" part is waaaaay to long...

... and it also contains a lot of really weird stuff, like e.g attitudes to women who were with nazis after the second world war. Come on! This is ancient history and not something that travellers nee to worry about. Most people are to young to remember the war anyway, and Germans are treated as any other nationality. The Second World War is definitely not a sensitive issue.

Another thing, "saying thank you for almost anything". I doubt that there is any difference from other European countries here. I have travelled in many other countries and have not experienced any big difference in this area.

About being patriotic, I doubt Norwegians are more patriotic than others. This is POV.

About whaling, I dont think most people have strong opinions either way.

About racist and sexist jokes, I guess this would vary a lot with who you are talking to. I added some info here that men should be aware that many women might be offended if a man insist on paying for them even after they first have said that they want to pay for themselves. To continue insisting on paying might be considered disrespectful and sexist.

About removing your shoes, I guess this would vary a lot from person to person. I dont think this is something particular for Norway and many culures would emphazise it more, like e.g. East Asians (personal experience, once I forgot to remove my sandals).

The info on economy was wrong, and I changed it, a persons income is considered a public, not a private issue.

About nationality, one cannot say in general that Norwegians would dislike being called Swedes or Danes, many people consider Scandinavians to be the same ethnic group, particularly Norwegians and Swedes.

About the comment "Norwegians are very proud of being "the best winter sport nation in the world": Not all people are interested in watching winter-sports (or sports in general). This comment definitely needs a reference! --Oddeivind 05:57, 28 February 2011 (EST)

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