Intern Abroad

Building a metro tunnel under the city of Göteborg

November 15th, 2022 | by
  • Business Administration and Engineering: Civil Engineering M.Sc.
  • Göteborg, Sweden
  • Wayss & Freytag Ingenieurbau AG
  • 06.04.2022 – 07.10.2022


1. Application/Finding an internship
During the pandemic and especially the lockdown I decided that I want to do an internship abroad. A fellow student recommended me an internship with Wayss & Freytag Ingenieurbau AG in Göteborg, Sweden. Because I always wanted to explore the Scandinavian region, I knew that would be a great opportunity. After two video calls with the responsible site manager, I got the positive feedback to go there during the summer semester and directly applied for the Erasmus scholarship. For the internship I would recommend applying at least 3 months ahead. It is important that you apply for the Erasmus scholarship at least six weeks before the internship starts. For that scholarship you need to do an EU survey and an OLS language test. The most critical part is the Online Learning Agreement (OLA), where you need signatures from all parties involved.

2. Accommodation & Living expenses
The accommodation was provided by the company. It was a small but very well-equipped apartment in Frihamnen. Even though Frihamnen is on the northern site of the river, I liked the location because the city center is reachable within 10 min bike ride and the public transport is very good. The apartment complex is called ‘waterfront cabins’. They have long- and short-term renting. When visiters came from Germany, they could book them via Airbnb for an affordable price. Otherwise the living expenses are higher than back home. Especially living costs are from what I have heard quite high and for foreigners difficult to get. For renting an accommodation, Sweden is dividing into first and second hand contracts. As a foreigner you can only get second hand contracts, which basically means temporary sublease. The daily expenses are a bit higher, but obviously depends on where you go. For grocery stores I enjoyed going to Lidl. Not only for some German stuff, but also the price/performance is great. From my point of view going out is quite expensive. Clubs usually cost at least 200 SEK (= 20 €) entry fee. Also eating in restaurants or having some drinks in a bar is pricy. As a reference point: 0,4l beer costs in between 45-90 SEK. Again, it really depends on where you go.

3. Everyday life/ the internship
The German company Wayss & Freytag is building a metro tunnel under the city as part of the “West Link” (Västlänken) project in Göteborg. Västlänken is one of the biggest infrastructure projects in Scandinavia. During my internship I was stationed as a project engineer on the construction site in Liseberg. The tunnel line of this site is going to be around 300m long. One of the biggest difficulties is a river going through the construction pit, which makes a lot of heavy foundation works necessary. For that I was mainly supporting the site managers and sometimes the supervisors in the production. I was responsible for the short-term planning as well as different documentary and design tasks. The team I worked with was young and super friendly from the beginning. I got along with them very quickly and we started doing stuff after work and on the weekends immediately. That helped a lot to get along in a new country with a new language. Because the joint venture partner is a Swedish company (NCC), it was roughly 50% Swedish and 50% German speaking coworkers. That made the cultural exchange super interesting. I really enjoyed the work atmosphere with all the colleagues, even though the work attitude/ethic between German and Swedish people may differ. The company also organized afterworks or Friday-breakfasts on a regular basis. One highlight was the summer party. I think those events are helping a lot for team building purposes and gives you a different connection with your coworkers – besides it was very fun. 😉

4. Free time/tips
After work I usually did sports (paddle, running or boulder) with coworkers. During the warm summer months, we sometimes went for a swim in one of the beautiful lakes or the ocean. On the weekends I tried to explore the surroundings of Göteborg. Whether the archipelago near Göteborg or the stunning nature inland, there is so much to discover. Kayaking, hiking or go fishing were only a few activities. Some of my German colleagues started kite surfing or sailing. The opportunities of outdoor activities are just amazing. Göteborg as a city has everything you can imagine. There are clubs and bars, museums, parks and a lot of nice cafes. We often went to the street food market in Lindholmen for a ‘Fika’. If you are looking for a bar with affordable drinks, Tullen’s or Café Magazinete is recommendable. TaKeT is a rooftop bar with an amazing view over the river and one of my favorite places in a sunny afternoon. For weekend excursions, Göteborg is located in a triangle between Oslo, Copenhagen and Stockholm. All three destinations are reachable within 4 hours drive. There is a fast Flixtrain connection to Swedens capital. For Copenhagen and Oslo distance buses are recommended, as they are usually cheaper than train connections. One of the biggest highlights was spending traditional Midsummer in a Swedish summer house. The amount of daylight in the summer was an excellent experience.


© Johannes Bennewitz

© Johannes Bennewitz










5. Conclusion
In summary, I can say that I absolutely benefited from the internship in many ways. Not only to getting to know the Scandinavian culture and the way of how a big infrastructure project works, but I also made a lot of new friends. For me personally I loved Göteborg as well as the Swedish nature and I will certainly be going there many more times in the future. I can highly recommend the internship program at Wayss & Freytag and I’m proud to be part of the Västlänken project.


One response to “Building a metro tunnel under the city of Göteborg”

  1. Peter says:

    Building a Metro Tunnel – what an exciting project. I accompanied the construction of the tunnel for the Metro 52 in Amsterdam ( The north of the city was connected here for the first time.

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