It doesn't matter which ‘best places to live’, ‘wealthiest countries in the world’ or ‘happiest nations on the planet’ lists you consult, Denmark is always found somewhere near the top. 

The Danish are happy, the education is excellent, the GDP per capita is high, it has one of the world’s smallest wealth gaps and is considered one of the most developed countries on the planet. 

Why are the Danish so happy and healthy? Perhaps because there are twice as many bicycles in the country as cars, the Danish drink more coffee than any other nation in the world, corruption is almost unheard of and the food is great. So great that Denmark is the fifth largest exporter of food worldwide. Cosmopolitan cities, unspoilt nature and welcoming people all round out an amazing place.

Do’s and don’ts in Danish business? Try to be on time and don’t be more than 5 minutes late without calling the person who’s waiting for you, using social media at work is frowned upon and get to know someone well before you ask them intimate questions.

Democracy, human rights and equality are highly valued by the Danish, and are topics that should be taken seriously in any conversation.

Denmark Residency

Denmark is part of the EU so people with citizenship of countries in the European Economic Area (EEA) can move, live and work freely in Denmark.  Citizens of the Nordic countries - Iceland, Denmark, Norway, Sweden and Finland can travel and reside in another Nordic country without any travel documentation (or a residence permit) as part of the Nordic Passport Union.

Here are some of the ways to live in Denmark if you are not a citizen of an EEA or Nordic country:

Work and Business Visas

You must hold a residence and work permit in order to reside and work in Denmark.  Here are some of the ways you can get a work and residency permit:

  • Your profession is on The Positive List , which is a list of professions where there is currently a shortage, you have a job offer and the required qualifications to do the role.
  • You have been offered a highly paid job (Pay Limit Scheme)
  • You have been offered a job by a company who is certified by the Danish Agency for International Recruitment and Integration. (Fast Track Scheme)
  • You are a researcher and there is a reason why the work needs to be carried out by you.
  • You are an entrepreneur with an innovative business idea, which can contribute to growth and new employment in Denmark.  You can apply for a startup visa. Your business idea must be approved by a panel of experts appointed by the Danish Business Authority.

Startup Visa

  • Start-up Denmark is for self-employed persons, and only non-EU (European Union) and non-EEA (European Economic Area) citizens can apply.
  • Up to three non-EU, non-EEA citizens can submit a business plan as a team. If the business plan is approved by the Start-up Denmark expert panel the applicants must apply individually for a work and residence permit at the immigration authorities.
  • A non-EU, non-EEA citizen can submit a business plan together with EU/EEA citizens. EU/EEA citizens do not need residence and work permits for Denmark due to the EU rules on free movement of persons and services.

Through Family

  • If your spouse is a citizen or permanent resident of Denmark, you are probably eligible for residency. Please note that your status of spouse needs to be legally recognised in this country.
  • See the citizenship section below for more information on residency or citizenship based on descent.

Working holiday visa

Citizens of Argentina, Australia, Canada, Chile, Japan, New Zealand and South Korea Can apply for a 12 month Danish working holiday visa.  You need to be between the ages of 18 and 30.

GDP Per Capita
$56,210  (Rank: 11)
Disposable Income
$3,270  (Rank: 12)
Life Expectancy
80.60  (Rank: 27)
Education Index
87.00%  (Rank: 10)
Corruption Index
90%  (Rank: 2)
Murders Per Year
47  (Rank: 54)
Crime Index
21.13  (Rank: 9)
Environmental Protection
76.92%  (Rank: 13)
Gender Equality
75.40%  (Rank: 19)
Annual Tourists
10,267,000  (Rank: 30)


Constitutional monarchy





Population Density

135 per square km

Denmark Citizenship

Here are some of the ways to get citizenship in Denmark:

  • If your father was a citizen of Denmark when you were born, you are a citizen of Denmark if your parents were married or in a civil partnership. If they were not in a marriage or civil partnership when you were born you are only a citizen if you were born after 1 February 1999.
  • If your mother was a citizen of Denmark when you were born, you are probably also a citizen of Denmark.
  • If your spouse is a citizen, you can apply for citizenship after being resident in Denmark for 6-9 years (dependent on the length of your marriage).  Please note that your status of spouse needs to be legally recognised in this country.
  • After 9 years of continuous residence, with restricted allowance for interrupted residence of up to 1 year or 2 years in special circumstances (education, family illness) you may be eligible for Danish Nationality.

Quality of Life

Rank: 5

Cost of Living

Rank: 9


Rank: 9

Average Temp.


Rank: 167

Resources & Links

The passport for Denmark allows you to travel to 161 countries without a visa.

Its global rank is 5.

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