Frequently Asked Questions about Norway
How do I live and work in Norway?
An increasing number of people are drawn to the combination of high salaries and almost-free education and healthcare in Norway. The good news for EU or EEA citizens is that you don’t need a visa to live or work in Norway at first. Only after you’ve stayed in the country for a while (between three and six months, depending on your nationality) will you need to apply for residency. Non-EEA citizens, including South Africans and Indians, will have a much more difficult time getting a work permit and moving to Norway. You will need to first find a job in Norway before you can apply for residency. Teachers can also try contacting international schools directly to find out if there are positions available.
Note that many jobs in Norway require at least a basic proficiency in Norwegian.
What’s the weather like in Norway?
Norway is a northern country, which means it has long, dark winters and short summers with long, light days. Some parts of Norway are also rainy almost year round in addition to this. Many expats find it difficult to adjust to the lack of sunlight during Norwegian winters.
Is healthcare in Norway free?
No. For citizens and residents of Norway, healthcare is heavily subsidised by the government and is almost free but for a small fee payable after any visit to the doctor. After a certain limit, which changes each year, your visits will be completely free.
Temporary residents and tourists are not entitled to this service (unless your country has a similar system and a corresponding reciprocal agreement with Norway). Tourists should note that medical care in Norway is expensive and won’t necessarily be covered by your medical insurance. You should check with your insurance company before you travel, and take out additional insurance if necessary.
Do I need to buy a car in Norway?
It depends. Cities such as Oslo have excellent and affordable public transport and owning a car may be unnecessary. However, if you have children or plan to travel often in Norway it might be a good idea to get a car. Norway has some of the strictest road traffic laws in the world and penalties can be severe, so make sure you are familiar with these when renting a car. Getting a Norwegian driver’s licence will be your biggest obstacle.