Happy Nations #2: Denmark

Here is how Denmark compares to the United States in each of the six factors for Happiness:

  • GDP: 1.953 v 1.982
  • Social Support: 1.243 v 1.182
  • Healthy Life Expectancy: 0.777 v 0.628
  • Freedom to Make Life Choices: 0.719 v 0.574
  • Generosity: 0.188 v 0.220
  • Perceptions of Corruption: 0.532 v 0.177

Low corruption and high freedom to make life choices is a phenomenal start for Denmark.

Other Scoring Systems

Not as high as expected in some rankings, but being in the top 10 across the board is nothing to ignore. We also found our highest-ranked country by the Legatum Institute, where they are top 10 in every category except for healthcare…


Denmark is #19 in Health Care Quality and #11 Overall. #12 in Health Care Security Index.

Healthcare in Denmark is primarily financed through local taxation with integrated funding and provision of health care at the regional level. Registered immigrants and asylum-seekers are also covered.

About half of Danes also use private Danmark insurance for pharmaceuticals and dental procedures.


Copenhagen is the capital of Denmark and is found on the eastern side of the country near Sweden. It holds a significant portion of the population, but other cities like Arhus still have reasonable density.

Copenhagen is similar to other Nordic capitals in weather. It is like a windier Stockholm, with a milder winter and less snow.

Cost of Living

Denmark is similar in cost to the United States.

Comparing Saint Louis, MO, to Copenhagen, we see it will cost 13% more to live in Copenhagen.


The official language of Denmark is Danish. However, About 86% of Danes also speak English as a second language. It is required for Danish students to learn from first grade in public elementary schools.

Denmark is 3rd in English proficiency.

Acceptance of Others

Denmark is less diverse than The United States.

Denmark is near the bottom of “ease of settling in.” 70% of Danish ex-pats find it hard to make friends. The Danish seem to be focused more on family and less on social life and including immigrants.

Only 8% of Denmark are immigrants, and about average in LGBT+ acceptance for Europe.

Moving Feasibility

Becoming a Dane is not that easy for Americans. You must marry a Dane, be a student or get a job offer from a Danish company. There is a list of niche possibilities.

There is an option for creating a “start-up” in Denmark, which would most likely be our only chance of entry.


Much like Switzerland, there is nothing remarkable that would draw me away from America. The Danish seem to like their country the way it is and don’t want foreigners messing that up.

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