Denmark is the second hardest country to settle in among the 64 participant nations in Expat Insider 2019, a survey conducted by InterNations.
The Danes finished in the bottom fifth of all four sub-categories that make up the rating: feeling at home (62), finding friends (64), friendliness (63) and language barriers (53).
Not so happy
Additionally, Denmark is very nearly the worst nation for personal happiness for expats as well, ranking 63rd out of the 64 nations.
Indeed, unhappiness is common among expats across the Nordics, with 20 percent feeling sad – well above than the worldwide average of 11 percent.
Only Finland, with 79 percent, had a higher level of satisfaction than the global average (75), with Norway (72), Denmark (65) and Sweden (62) all lagging behind.
Many blame the struggle of making friends.
“It’s harder to make local friends than in other countries,” an expat from Hungary explained to InterNations. “The culture of silence and reservation is often emphasised.”
Only 40 percent of expats in Denmark respond that the locals are friendly to foreign residents, which places Denmark as the worst of all the Nordic countries, trailing only Kuwait overall.
Fab for families
Despite the social isolation of the expats, Nordic countries are the best destinations for families.
Finland, in first place for four years in a row, is closely followed by Sweden (2) and Norway (6).
Denmark, though, has slipped six places to tenth due to a slump in the quality of its education, which fell from sixth to 24th.
Taiwan is the easiest place for expats to settle thanks to high scores for quality of life (3), favourable personal finances (6), and working life (8).
A high score for favourable personal finances helped Vietnam to secure second place.