Living in Denmark
Contrary to most other EU member states, social benefits in Denmark only to a very limited degree depend on employer contributions and direct contributions, and peoples right to benefits depends only to a limited extent on their former activity on the labour market. The principle behind the Danish welfare society, often known as “the Scandinavian welfare model”, is that all citizens have access to social benefits regardless of their social or ethnic background. This means that foreigners living in Denmark benefit from the Danish welfare system on an equally with Danes and may benefit from the public (partly self financed) childcare system, the public educational system and the free public health service.
Foreigners living in Denmark describe it as a safe and peaceful country for their children to grow up in. Many emphasize the high quality of life and the opportunities for families with children. Many also appreciate the unpolluted and easily accessible natural environment they find in Denmark.
Denmark offers a high quality of life
Quality of life is not only a matter of material wealth, but also depends to a great extent on the social and political circumstances of a country.
According to the University of Pennsylvania's studies of different countries ability to satisfy their inhabitant's social and material needs, Denmark is the best country to live in.
In general, highly educated foreigners also have a positive impression of Denmark. This is evident from a survey among 1350 highly educated people from eight different countries (England, Sweden, Malaysia, Latvia, Poland, India, Singapore and China). Among the positive aspects, good working conditions, high standard of living, well-functioning welfare system and high safety are mentioned.
According to another survey among 400 expatriates living in Denmark (The Expat Study, Oxford Research, 1998), more than every third mention Denmark as their preferred country in Europe in which to live and work.
Foreigners working in Denmark are usually covered by the Danish social security legislation as soon as they start working. In certain cases, a requirement of permanent residence in Denmark may have to be met. There are, however, certain fixed waiting periods for the various types of services, e.g. health insurance services, health benefit, unemployment benefit, compensation according to the Occupational Injury Act etc. Under certain circumstances you may apply to be covered by the social security in your home country instead.
The rules depend on which country you come from.
Read more about the various areas within social security:www.workindenmark.dk
A typical Danish family's living expenses are distributed this way:
- Cost and maintenance of residence 22%
- Food, drink and tobacco 17%
- Transport and communication 17%
- Other products and services, such as childcare 13%
- Leisure equipment, entertainment 11%
- Heating, electricity 7%
- Domestic equipment 6%
- Clothes, footwear 5%
- Medical expenses 2%
For more information on Danish Lifestyle please visit http://www.denmark.dk