Aarhus University Seal / Aarhus Universitets segl

Living in Denmark

Welcome to the country of “the happiest people in the world”. Numerous international studies place Danish inhabitants at the top of happiness and general satisfaction rankings. This apparent satisfaction with life is often credited to 'soft factors' – culture, leisure time and family life - as opposed to 'hard values' such as money or material wealth.

Located in the southernmost part of Scandinavia, Denmark is the gateway between Scandinavia and the rest of Europe. Denmark is a coastal country with long white beaches. The landscape is mostly flat with rolling hills, green fields and woods. Because of the flat landscape, the bicycle is the preferred means of urban transportation.

The Danish lifestyle

The Danes are generally well educated, well informed, yet at the same time enjoy a distinctly Danish informality. This gives the Danes a relaxed and often humorous attitude to authorities and life itself. Most Danes also have a good command of English, so you will find it easy to live in Denmark even if you do not speak Danish. Denmark is a very safe and secure country with a low crime rate.

Buzzing city life and beautiful countryside

In Denmark you will find that the distances are short – and this makes it possible to combine the atmosphere of a buzzing city life with the relaxation of the beautiful Danish country- and seaside. Clean beaches and green forests are rarely more than half an hour’s drive away along with numerous cultural and artistic offerings available. For Danes, ‘hygge’ – the concept of cosiness – is an essential part of life. Maybe that is why Danes have been named the happiest people in the world on numerous occasions.

The Danish welfare society

Denmark's high taxation rates stem from the emphasis placed on work-life balance, democracy and other areas people prioritise. This gives rise to a welfare society that runs smoothly in many respects. The high level of social welfare contributes to a society that is accustomed to generally high standards of living with free education, health care, etc.

Flat structures and informality

Many expats coming to Denmark describe their experience of Danish work culture as flat-structured and informal. This means, for example, that all employees and managers address each other by their first names, and that most decisions are discussed in forums where all employees have an equal say.

Work-life balance

The employee demand for flexible working hours due to the fact that the majority of both men and women work. Denmark is actually the only country amongst the members of the OECD, in which maternity does not hinder the employment of women at all (OECD 2009).