Sweden has became the first country in the world with its very own national telephone number. A campaign by a WPP Agency, Ingo Stockholm, for Swedish Tourist Association has set up a hotline that lets people from around the world to get connected to a random Swede- The Swedish number.
“In troubled times, many countries try to limit communication between people, but we want to do just the opposite,” Magnus Ling, general secretary and CEO of the Swedish Tourist Association, said in a statement.
“We are making Sweden the first country in the world with its own phone number and giving our fellow Swedes the opportunity to answer the calls, express themselves and share their views, whatever they might be.”
Swedes can sign up online to take part in the campaign. A switchboard supports incoming calls 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The switchboard then randomly chooses one of the Swedish ambassadors to take each call.
About 3,000 people have signed up so far. They are they are not vetted or given any instructions on what to talk about, which is a pretty brave move on the Tourist Associations side.
Since launching the hotline, 9591 incoming calls have been answered by volunteers. The top five calling countries are the USA (30 per cent), Turkey (25 per cent), U.K (8 per cent), Russia (7 per cent) and Germany (4 per cent).
The number is +46 771 793 336 but keep in mind that international charges do apply.