Jobs in Norway: The Hard Truth

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An American in Trondheim shares his difficulties finding a job in Norway, along with some advice for those of you job-hunting now.

Since finding a job here a little over a year ago, I’ve done my best to share the transition process with other expats who are hoping to move to Norway (Trondheim, specifically, since that is where I have settled).

The river in Trondheim

I’ve been lucky enough to trade emails and meet with many people searching for work in this city. Most come here chasing love, hoping to find a job so that they can stay with their significant other.

Some have questions about coming here for school or because it’s a beautiful place.

How to find a job in Trondheim

While Trondheim is indeed a wonderful place to live, it’s also very difficult to find work here.

Read the Book: How to Find a Job in Norway

NOTE: Before you continue to read this article, there is something you should know: Life in Trondheim is absolutely amazing and it is, in my opinion, the nicest city in the world.

Vintervatnet lake

The nature is incredible, the atmosphere is friendly, there is a booming tech sector, education is incredible, healthcare is great, crime is extremely low, and it is a wonderful place to raise a family.

Now, with that said, if anyone who wanted to move to Trondheim could easily make it happen, Trondheim would cease to be the small city that we know and love. So, there is a beautiful silver lining to the otherwise hard truths of finding work in Trondheim.

Now, I’m not going to sugar-coat this: finding a job in Trondheim is not easy. In fact, may be the most difficult place to find work that I have ever lived in. Here are a few things you should know.

Highly educated population

Trondheim is home to NTNU, Norway’s technical university and therefore is teeming with highly educated job seekers. According to OECD, 82% of the adult population has at least an upper secondary education and 38% a tertiary degree. Generally speaking, upper secondary is a bachelors and tertiary is a masters.

NTNU Trondheim

In addition, most of these degrees are in sciences, technologies, and business. As you can imagine, when I arrived with a degree in political science, the deck was stacked against me.


Norwegians will pretend that they are not nationalistic, but in my opinion, this is untrue. Norwegians prefer to hire other Norwegians for a myriad of reasons. One of them being language proficiency, but there are others. People hire people that they can relate to and get along with.

Commonly, Norwegians stick together. As a society, they take care of one another. There is nothing wrong with this and in my opinion, it is a good thing… but it does make the job search hard on expats.

In fact, I would say that Trønders are even so nationalistic as to prefer hiring a fellow Trønder over someone from Oslo, Bergen, etc and likewise for those cities.

Norway troll holding a flag

Small city

Here in Trondheim, it seems like everyone knows each other. With a population of 180,000, Trondheim is still a small city.

People grew up together, went to school together, their families know each other, reputations are built and it’s relatively easy to fill an open job slot with such a tight connection. As a foreigner, this is another obstacle that you will need to overcome.

I very highly suggest volunteering as much as possible, meeting people at every opportunity and networking until you are ready to collapse.

The reputation that you build for yourself starts from the day you arrive here… and for many of you, the clock is ticking. Dress sharp, be active, and show how much you want to live here.

NTNU Trondheim
An aerial view of Trondheim, Norway

Norwegians hire for life

This one is sort of unspoken but generally true. In Norway, it is almost impossible to fire someone. Therefore, when companies hire, they are looking for a perfect match. They want to believe that you don’t just see them as a stepping stone to a visa or work permit.

You have to be the perfect candidate. So, you had better do your research and be on your A-game. Prove to them that you will stick around so that they feel less scared about hiring you.

Limited jobs in Trondheim

Even for Trønders looking to find or switch jobs, the options are limited. This results from a couple of the things already mentioned, such as this being a small city and that hiring for life results in lower turnover rates.

In addition, there are only a few of each type of company here and jumping from competitor to competitor would probably be frowned upon.

One of the biggest factors, however is economy. With the current oil crisis and many skilled workers being laid-off, Norway is seeing the highest jobless rate in a decade. This, of course, means that those skilled workers are now competing for available jobs as well. Again, competition goes up.

Immigration requirements

As skilled workers, you must meet strict immigration requirements. If you are not from an EU member country, you will only have 6 months to find employment (3 month tourist visa plus 3 month extension for job seekers).

The UDI Office in Oslo, Norway

Be sure you apply for this job seeker extension as soon as possible and note that you will need to meet living and income requirements. Even after you have received a job offer, you must meet specific salary requirements.

The companies must pay a minimum salary of NOK 412,600 if you have a Masters and NOK 382,900 if you have a Bachelors degree. This is to ensure that all immigrants receive equal pay for equal work on the same level as all Norwegians.

However, this can be a huge obstacle since many people may only receive their first job offers from smaller companies or startups.

Those salaries are pretty competitive and an employer would need a darn good reason to hire you at that wage over a Norwegian. For more info, check the UDI page.


The bottom line is that finding a job in Norway is very competitive and if you are not Norwegian, the deck is stacked against you. However, there are some things that may help.

Volunteer & network. You need to get to know people people here. Volunteer, network, attend groups from meetup.com, join whatever events you can find your way into and make the most of the opportunity.

Learn norsk. There’s not a chance you’re going to learn fluent norsk in a few short months but being able to hold just enough of a conversation to prove you’re learning can take you a long way.

Know your sector. Sometimes oil is hot, sometimes it’s not. If you’re a geo engineer of some sort, this is a hard time for you to find work. If you’re in tech/startups, it might be a good time. Do your research and see how your industry sector is doing here before you make the leap.

Skilled/unskilled. For skilled workers (college degree/equivalent or higher), the competition is high and the openings are pretty limited. Even for non-skilled workers, it’s not like you can just walk into McDonalds and people will say “thanks for showing up, you’re hired”.

Save up. Norway is expensive. You’ll need about $2,000 for each month that you intend to be here. You can get by on slightly less if you want to eat rice and beans. It’s about the same as moving to NYC except that you can’t just find a job to keep you afloat until something better pans out.

Don’t give up! You don’t have a single day to waste, especially if you are from outside the EU and only have 6 months. You need to be visiting offices, shaking hands, and meeting people. It would be a bad feeling to head home knowing that you didn’t give this your best shot.

An oil rig in Tromsø harbour

Ask for help. Find any mentors or mentor programs you can and ask them to help you. If you can find my email address (it’s not hard), hit me up and we’ll grab a coffee and talk strategy.

Learn more. Read about how I found a job in Trondheim. It goes into a bit more detail on the job seeking advice. You can also read about the Working Culture in Norway to learn more about the ups/downs.

It is generally very difficult for expats to find work in Trondheim, especially when the economy is down as a result of oil.

Read the Book: How to Find a Job in Norway

To add to that, a combination of factors including language, population size, education levels, nationalism, immigration rules, and others will make it hard to find work here, but not impossible.

Even the non-skilled jobs, such as working at a restaurant or sports store seem to be pretty competitive and besides, if you don’t speak norsk, it’s hard to work with the customers.

Read more: Communication in a Norwegian Workplace

However, don’t let that get you down. If you’ve read this whole thing and still wish to move to Trondheim to be with your loved one, climb mountains, attend school or whatever else, then GO FOR IT!!! You only live once and you’ll never know if you don’t try.

Moving to Norway is the best decision I have ever made and no matter how much I travel, Trondheim still feels like home.

So, when you get here, send me a message and we’ll meet up to see if there’s any way I can be of help.

The hard truth about finding jobs in Norway

About David Smith

Dave Smith is a former US Marine and a graduate of the University of California, Berkeley. He is an avid adventurer, backpacker, and volunteer with travel in over 40 countries. Dave moved from the USA to Norway in December 2014 to pursue a serious relationship with his beautiful Norwegian girlfriend.

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88 thoughts on “Jobs in Norway: The Hard Truth”

      • Hi Dave this is a very nice and helpful article and so motivating . Been with my nowergain beautiful girlfriend for four years , visited her once from Norway . Have a bachelor in IT . Am from Uganda but am so stuck on how I can go and stay with her or a get a job easily . She stays in Bergen. Will be appreciative for yr feed back

  1. Well articulated and very true! I got nowhere with 11 applications then out of the blue my brother in laws boss offered me a job on his recommendation. It’s very much who you know in this town.

    • Yup, all about the friend of a friend recommendation here. I’ve been working for five months now and its nothing to do with my education or 15 years of experience working in a world class city. Its because someone knew someone who knew someone who said ‘you should give this person a job’

      Yes its great for me and its worked out in the end (was year almost a year without work, up to B2 level norwegian etc) but cant help feeling it was luck more than anything else.

  2. Hi David,
    Thank you for your great articles and insight. I have enjoyed everything very much. I was hoping to get your general opinion, being that you are from the US, but living in Norway now. I was born in the US, but am of Norwegian heritage. My grandfather was one of 12 kids in Norway and the only one who came to the US to marry and live. I am very close to a lot of my family in Norway. I’m thinking of maybe moving to either Oslo or Porsgrunn. I also have a bachelors degree. All considered, how would it be for me finding a job. I also understand you can’t give specifics. Thanks so much for any feedback!! Happy Holidsys!! ??

    • Hi Robin,

      This depends a lot on what your degree is in, what work experience you have and whether you already speak norsk. For instance, if you have a bachelors in computer science, 5 years in a good company with good recommendations and you can speak Norwegian well, then you may have a very good chance. Also, seeking for jobs in Oslo is supposedly much easier than in many other parts of Norway, due to the large international population. However, I can’t really answer beyond this. Best of luck!

  3. Dear David,
    I am Master in Aquaculture from Croatia.
    I have a great wish to move in Trondheim seeking for better life for me and my family. My husbands already lived in Norway for 3. Years and playing like professional in handball club Runnar and Viking.
    Unfortunately because of familly member get sick we had to come back home 4 years ago.
    Do you think my profession is wanted there? Do I have a chance to find a job?
    I would love to have a Coffey and chat with you if I ever come in T.

    Kind regards,

    • Hi Kristina,

      A Master in Aquaculture could be very useful here. Norway is one of the fastest growing aquaculture sectors in the world. In 2012, Norwegian aquaculture production amounted to approximately 1,3 million tons, 99 percent of which was Atlantic salmon and trout.

      That’s all I can answer for you. It seems like a good education to have here, so I wish you good luck!

      • I am planning to do my Masters there in International Relations soon. Would it be convenient enough to get a job in Norway with IR or should I think about Environmental Science instead?

        Your article motivated me and had a lot of insight about the life and working scenario. Thanks.

        • Hello Zara,

          Remember this is your words:-
          I am planning to do my Masters there in International Relations soon. Would it be convenient enough to get a job in Norway with IR or should I think about Environmental Science instead? April,19,2019.

          In 2021 I also wanted to come to Norway in future but I need a advice from you , I am thinking about Environmental science and as I can see your words you were looking for master in Norway, please tell me if there is any demand for environmental science. I will be grateful to you. And if you don’t want to reply there is no issue.

  4. Greetings, Dave – I am so happy to have found this site. I am 31 years old, and have MA in English Language and Literature. I plan to immigrate to Norway in order to basically save my skin as the conditions in my home country, Serbia, are getting worser and worser with each day passing by. I’m planning to start learning bokmal really soon, and I am fairly good with words (being a published prose and poetry writer in my country). I have meticulously gone over the ads on EURES and similar sites but so far had no luck in finding a job vacancy as an English teacher in a private school (that would be my preferred choice of work). What else could I possible do in Norway pertaining to my profession? – or – am I condemned to work as a construction worker?

    Also, what do you think of the city called Lillehammer? What’s it like there?

    Respectfully yours,

    • Hey Sergei, I don’t know much about the literature profession. There are lots of skilled English speakers here and I would imagine that most private schools are looking for someone fluent in English and Norsk.

      I don’t know much about Lillehammer and I’ve never been there. But, keep your head up and don’t give up if this is what you really want. However, I hope that your big desire is to bring value to the people you will teach in Norway, not just to escape Serbia.



  5. Hi, I’m writing from Ålesund. It is the same as you have described here also. Being a relatively small town (46 000) with 75% of companies having less then 4 employees, hiring in general is very hard, let alone hiring a foreigner maybe with limited language skills .
    Until a few years ago, if you had a engineering degree, you’d be welcomed open arms and offered a generous salary, even if you did not speak a work of norwegian, but not any longer. I have norwegian friends with experience and good education who are bounced from interview to interview, including psychological tests and all sort of screenings before they’re given maybe a one year contract opportunity.
    I am currently working for an international company and I’m home office based, I had this job before I moved here and luckily I was offered to continue with it, though logistically transferred to the norwegian branch. However I am seeking a change and it has proven difficult: I have sent many applications, initially my cover letter was written in English, now I manage it in Norwegian, no secret I am foreigner but it shows willingness to learn and to fit in. In two years not a single interview. This is though mostly due to my background and degree (I won’t go into details here).
    I can confirm that most people I know who were looking for a job (norwegian citizens) found one often because of “someone who knows someone…”. In one post advert I read with shock one of the requirements was to speak norwegian with local dialect/accent, because not only it is important to be norwegian but if you’re local, that’s even better!

    Then again I also agree if you have a degree or work experience that is in need here all these may not be relevant: doctors and nurses, I hear, are among the “wanted” professions, for whom good English and basic Norwegian are sufficient. Vets also are needed as I read there are few universities that offer that path.
    In general science degrees, I agree, are much preferred.
    Also mechanics, plumbers, electricians and in general skilled technical professions are sought after.

    Last comment, are norwegian better educated? well well, on paper probably yes, statistically most hold a university degree, but are these degrees comparable to same degree abroad that would be my question. I love it here, all great living conditions etc but one huge disappointment is the school system (I have 4 kids in different school years): great infrastructure, low level in content. I could write more on this but this isn’t the place.

    To end on a good note: though difficult to find a permanent job here, more and more companies are offering a 12 months or so opportunity ( I guess the law has changed a couple of years ago and now permits slightly more flexibility)

    • Thanks Paola. That provides good insight on the hiring and employment in even smaller cities. I am sure it can be rather difficult for foreigners to find work in such small, tight-knit populations. However, keep networking, keep trying and best of luck!

  6. Hi Dave,
    I’m planning to move to Norway … I’m mechanical engineer and I got my MBA and I will do my second master in engineering there … Actually, I’m working in muti-national company with good income, I felt that there is a risk to move of there now … But, at the same time I want that life – work balance which is not here at all, I want to build up my own family … What do u think ? … Shall I give it up here and move there ?… Is it two years enough to find a job (master period)… Is my filed quit (mechnical engineering) soomther to find a job in easier way ? …


    • Hi Tifa, I can’t answer those questions for you. Only you can choose where you want to live and work. Moving to Norway is difficult and finding work can be difficult. But, if it’s what you really want, then you need to decide. If you can get accepted to school here, it would be a great opportunity and should give you time to find a job.

    • Hi Tifa, if by any chance you decide to choose Oslo keep in mind to try applying to Aker Solutions f. ex., especially if you have work experience in you field. They have English as a work language so it should be easier language wise. I know they also have internships that you can find announced on their website in good time if you want to apply.

  7. Dear Dave,

    I am currently 16 years old and living in Belgium. However i am so interested and passionate about Norway that i want to move when i’m 20 years old to this magnificent country. To prepare myselve a bit i started to learn Noregian (Norsk) since 3 months. i hope to speak the language suffiecienly at 20 y/o. I am currently taking school at a technichal school and nearing my degree as an electrician with a specialisation in Offshore and Land Windmill technology.
    Do you think i have a chance in finding work in the county where Trondheim is situated?
    thanks a lot for the amazing article!


    • Hey Elian, sorry for the late reply. I must say that your English is very good for a 16y/o from Belgium and if you can learn norsk quickly, it may be possible for you to find a job here. The benefit on your behalf is that as a youth, you will have much more flexibility with where you live and how much money you need to get by. You also benefit that as a EU citizen, immigration policy is much easier on you.

      Best of luck!

  8. Hi Dave,

    My husband and I, we’re planning to migrate in Norway with our two kids. We are skilled professionals, and our work experience was mainly in electronics and semiconductor manufacturing. In Trondheim, there is Nordic Semicon where we would like to apply for a Job. Kindly help if it is advisable to move there even if we still don’t have an employer from Norway? We don’t have much, but we would like to try to live in Norway. Thanks.

    • Hi Celeste,

      Moving here without a job lined up and without a place to stay would be very risky and difficult. There may be some jobs within Nordic Semicon or one of the others… but I would highly suggest applying for the job and even flying here for the interview if needed before you move your whole family.

      Norway is very expensive and for many reasons difficult to find employment. So, my opinion on what you should do is stated above, but whatever you choose I wish you the best of luck.

  9. As much as I liked Norway (as a tourist) – I must say the prices here are ridiculous. There is no reason to pay x4-5 more for the SAME product as in your country. The very same brand chocolate, or gum or soft-drink… 5 times really?
    With 450000NOK (50k euro) you will struggle to achieve the life you can have in many East European countries. Yes, East Europe.
    If you have your own business or income – maybe that is different. But to live on salary – 50k euro in Norway is nothing.
    50k in country like Bulgaria or Croatia, would give you the quality of life of 150k in Norway, easily.

    • That’s sort of a mixed-truth. I agree it seems very pricey as a tourist. In a reality, living here is not bad at all. Sure 50K Euro buys more stuff in many places than it does in Norway… but that doesn’t mean total quality of life is higher.

      In addition, average salaries and median income are higher here than they are in most other places.

      I’ve never lived in other parts of Europe for long-term, but I get by just fine here in Norway on an average salary.

  10. Hi Dave ,
    I enjoyed your article and most of it i enjoyed your response to all of them who writed on you.
    Im an architect bachelor degree, do i have a chance to find a job and live in Norway , bedsides i am married and have two little kids. But there is a problem that country I coming from is not accepted in EU.
    Thank for sharing your great true story with us.

    • Hi Fid,

      Anything is possible… but if the country you are coming from is for some reason not accepted by the EU then it’s unlikely that you will have a chance to live in Norway. Your Bachelor’s degree may also not be accepted here, but I cannot answer these questions for you. I suggest you contact the UDI.

      • Thank you for your reply,
        Last question; What if i find a job and somehow someone send me a job offer by Norwegian embloyer, and work for him and pays all taxes . For how much long i can take my family in Norway and beings like Norwegian citizen.

        Thank you , I appreciate.


  11. Hi David,
    I’m currently in the process of getting my residency permit in Norway via marriage. I’m from the us, and a paramedic by profession. I am very much aware that although I’ll have to be re-educated for my profession, there’s almost always jobs and room for healthcare. I arrived here in mid October and am down around the Drammen area. I just want to point out some things I’ve really noticed compared to what some other comments have said. Yes, things in Norway tend to be a bit more expensive. However with the exception of homes and cars, everything else seems fairly close, only about a 10% difference, to the costs in the US, at least in the region I’m from. Although the move to Norway may not be the smoothest and easiest (let’s face it, doing anything with the government never goes right the first time), it’s very much worth it. It’s a beautiful country, With a significantly higher quality of life compared to so many other places. I thought I was happy before, until I got a taste of Norwegian lifestyles here.

    • Eric, I have a ton of respect for paramedics and first responders. I hope that everything continues to go well for you here. I’ve heard that transferring medical skills abroad can be very tricky and time consuming. I wish you all the best of luck!

    • Eric & David, thanks for this article & the comment, as I’ve been struggling to find info on exactly this! I’m also a Paramedic, but in the UK. I’m just starting to think about moving to Norway to explore whether or not it’s a better quality of life. Have you had any luck, Eric, finding work as a Paramedic?

    • I’m interested in moving to Norway as a Paramedic with 2 years frontline experience for a UK Ambulance Service.

      How do I start the process?
      What retraining is necessary?
      Which areas of Norway are most likely to have a vacancy?
      Many thanks.

  12. Very helpful from you Dave.
    Please i would want to contact you when I’m in Norway because I’m planing to come to Norway as a visitor and hoping to find cleaner, factory, fish gutter or even garbage job.but I’m black from Africa and with what I have read on the net,I don’t know what’s possible and how to survive there because I only speak and understand English.
    Please I need you to assist me on how a black african hoping to survive in Norway for a year.
    Please my email is “glozzy87@yahoo. com”

  13. Hi Dave,
    Thank you for your answers.
    I`m an finance bachelor degree, do I have a chance to find a job and live in Norway?I would like to find a job in international trade sector. I speak Engilish,Russian, Turkish and üould like to leanr Nowegian language.


  14. Hi Dave,
    I was googling jobs in Trondheim, then came up with your earlier article “how to find job in Trondheim”. I think it’s quite useful.
    I’m currently a phd student in Tromso (have been in Norway for 3 years), my husband is now working in Trondheim. So I hope to find a job here eventually.
    I have questions on first, I have organic chemistry background (got my master in the US, in a phd program but due to my husband got offer in Tromso, so I quit organic chemistry); and now studying geoscience (marine environment etc). with more than just one focus will that help finding a job? second is where do you find volunteering work? I’m here in Trondheim once a month, so I can try start networking everytime I’m here.

    Happy New Year

    • Hi Amber, I’m very late in my response so I hope all has gone well for you. I can’t comment on your job prospects because I don’t have a background in geoscience or chemistry and know nothing about the job markets for those.

      Volunteering opportunities can be found all over… just look up TEDx Trondheim, Kosmarama, or any other type of festival/activity you’d like to be involved in and then send them a message via email or their FB page asking to help out.

  15. Hi Dave, I just stumbled on to your blog and I am very impressed with it. I have been married to a Norwegian woman for over 20 years and lived in Fredrikstad for a little while, though my wife is actually from way up north by Tromsø. There is no doubt that Norway is a fantastic place to live , but it also true, as you describe, that Norwegians are very insular and homogeneous; which makes it very difficult for expats or anyone that isnt born Norwegian to make it in Norway. We moved back to the states since it would be easier for me to work while my wife stayed home with our child, but with all this divisiveness of this administration, inequality, lack of a uniform health care system, violence, etc., we often think about moving back to Norway.

    I often wondered if there were any Norwegian businesses that had any interest in hiring Americans, but usually Norwegians speak English well enough. I always thought if I could just land an international job in Norway, I could have a career and my wife could have her Norwegian culture back. However, I have yet to find a Norwegian job posting for an American attorney.

    I got a kick out of your comment that Tronders only want to hire other Tronders; I am not surprised. I’ve been to Trondheim; Nidaros cathedral is pretty cool. Dont they pronounce “I” (Jeg) as “Eh” in Trondheim? Up north they pronounce it as “Egg.”

    BTW, have you been following the news with the Marines in Norway?

    Keep up the good work.


  16. hi Dave,
    I am from Bangladesh. I am plannig to study at fisheries science in norway. What is the job situation for this sector? NB:I want to settle in Norway After I have completed my course.

  17. Hi Dave I am a Cameroonian playing to move to Norway for better life. I have a BSC in political science and masters in public administration plus close to six years of professional experience with an NGO where I manage projects and programs. Please what are my chances of securing a good job while in Norway

  18. Hello Dave, thank you for your wonderful posts. Could we please communicate via email? [email protected]
    I am a US citizen partnered with a EU national, we are doing our research, I have a B.A. in Mathematics, another in philosophy, I’m completing my MSc in International Finance at the University of Liverpool, we live in Florida, my EU partner is completing his AS in Computer Programming, we are anxious to start our lives in Norway the right way as soon as possible. Please advise and thank you so much for your time.

  19. Hi Dave.

    I am a Mozambican national aged 43.I graduated with a BSc Economics honors from university of Zimbabwe. I have more than ten years experience working as filling station manager and later promoted to regional fuel depot manager for Bp Zimbabwe. what are the chances of getting a job?

  20. Hey Dave!
    What do you think is much better option for getting a job in norway? Getting masters from India, or studying masters from any university of Norway? We can also learn norwegian while studying for masters. And is the admission process easy for university for a non-european?

    • Obviously, a Noregian Masters degree would be more useful for you to land a job in Norway. I cannot comment on the likelihood of you being accepted, but the programs here are very competitive. Good luck.

  21. Hi Dave.
    Thanks a lot for the informative document. I am a 40 year old, married with two sons aged 10, 4. I am a media and journalism consultant with one degree. I have practiced journalism for years before but am currently more interested in church ministry. i am not sure what you think about Christian non denominational public communication opportunities in Norway. I am really interested. I have preached, pastored and counselled for over 20 of my years.

  22. Hi Dave,
    I am a 19 year old Indian citizen and my name is Anna Joy. I am studying final year of my 3 year bachelor’s degree in commerce in India. I will complete my Bachelor’s degree in March – April 2019. I want to study 2 year MSc program in Logistics/Supply Chain Management (SCM) in any one of the best university in Norway. What is best university where I can join and what are the job opportunities in Norway after my studies. I am thanking you in advance for your assistance and advice

  23. Hello Dave,
    You got us valuable information about norway, a dream country for me and my husband. I have a bachelors and masters degree in business. I am a govt college teacher . My husband has an MBBS and he is a doctor with working experience in a govt hospital. We’re both Mauritian and we want to settle in norway. Your article inspired me to move to norway the sooner to pursue our dreams. Thank you very much.

  24. hi Dave,

    I have a remote desktop software job with a good product based company in US. I a from India and I am recently in UK on dependant visa. I had decided to end my marriage and move on to live in peace somewhere far. It was my father’s last wish that i study PG abroad. He preferred US but I have notice money except idea good amount of savings which I can’t afford to use on tuition money. My parents are dead and it’s basically like ‘I have no one’. I recently came to know that education is free for foreigners in Norway so I would like to study also. I an veey much interested in social service activities and volunteeractivitues that will help others lives It will add great meaning and purpose to my life.

    Since I already have a job at hand, will it be possible that i can directly apply for immigration. My salary though is ony around 27000 US dollars a year.

    Please help me.

  25. Hi Dave
    Iam Lloyd from Zimbabwe, I recently graduated with a degree in Veterinary science. Do you think I have a chance getting a job in Norway

  26. Hi dude,

    Thanks for such as nice article, I am an automotive electrical technician, fixing cars since last 20 years and thinking to settle in Norway, any chance for me to get a job in Norway? should I come or look any other Scandinavian country?


  27. Hey Dave,

    I am from the States and have recently moved to Stjørdal.

    I found a part-time substitute teaching job here (through friends of my husband) but would like to move into the business industry and (eventually) have a full-time job.

    I would love to connect and pick your brain for more advice.

  28. Hi Dave,

    I’m from Iran and I wanna study software engineering in Oslo. Is it possible to find a job while studying at university? Is it difficult to get permanent residence in Norway?

  29. Hello dave,
    Im from Portugal and i will be moving to bergen next year because my awesome boyfriend got a huge job opportunity in Norway… i was thinking about getting any job at first but eventually i was hoping to become a cabin crew fly attendant in norway. I speak english, french, portuguese and still learning norsk and italian too! Do you think i have any chance on fly industries in norway since im not native??
    Really need some advice about the norwegian minds on this!!
    Thank you!

  30. Hi Dave..my name is Kenneth Abot from Kenya.My question is can a diploma level from a technical university with over ten years of experience have a chance to get a job in Norway ?

    Best Regards

  31. Hellow Dave!!
    I am Mahmudul Hasan from Bangladesh.I want to study Electrical &Electronic Engineering in Oslo for Masters degree. Is it easy to find subject related job after finishing masters program as a EEE Engineer??also inform me please that which job sectors is the best in Norway,Engineering/IT/Medical science etc??please tell me!!
    Best Regards,
    Mahmudul Hasan

    • Hi Mahmudul, I can’t provide any insight here. I know nothing about this field or the job prospects. Best of luck.

      Engineering and IT are strong fields here.

  32. Greetings Dave! 🙂
    My name is Dusan and i come from Serbia,a small country in the Balkans(not a member of the EU). As far as I can tell ,you my mate, have provided us with loads of great information ,so thank you a lot for that,it is very appreciated!!
    I’m committed to moving to Norway(Oslo to be exact) in pursuit of my girlfriend, therefore I’m trying to get as much info about it as I can get!
    Now,I as everybody else here would like to ask you ,if you have the time to read this of course, about my chances of finding a job (although,whatever the chances are,I’ll still do my best to get to Norway,I’m not giving up on it! 🙂 but still,I wanna know what I’m heading into),so here is my situation:
    I’ll be getting my bachelor’s degree by the end of the year in computer science ,got a few certificates from some Microsoft courses,and some other companies,i’m a member of Mensa’s election’s committee ,got a few projects behind me which i did for university, aaand that’s about it(no recommendations since i haven’t worked anywhere yet unfortunately,that’s my biggest concern :/ ). So i was just wondering about your assumption,how hard will it be for me to get any job there.
    Even if you don’t answer,thanks a lot for all the info you’ve provided us,it’s amazing,and best o’ luck! 🙂


    • I cannot comment on your chances of getting a job. That is largely dependent on only you: How hard you work, how well you interview, how well your resume is written, how well you network with people to find openings, etc.

      I don’t want to sound depressing but your bachelor’s degree and some certificates will not get you far. They may be enough to get you into a startup or something or maybe even a small company but that again is entirely dependent on you as a person.

      I wish you luck. I’m in Oslo often so if you happen to be there long-term, let me know and we can meet up.

      • Yeah, of course ,I realise that everything (at least in IT,if not all professions) depends on my skills, knowledge, and hard work, not much on those pieces of paper, which are mostly there to show a threshold which we’ve crossed into the world of IT. I was just curious of what Norwegians think of “newly baked” programmers, and how welcome they are, but I guess, it’s the same as everywhere – knowledge and attitude is key 🙂

        Thanks again for all the help ,and a quick response, i really appreciate it a lot!

        When i happen to be in Oslo for long-term, the drink is on me 🙂

  33. Hi Dave, I have just been accepted with a Scholarship for PhD in Technology and Natural Sciences through a research fellowship in Norway. Please what is my chance of getting a job after this program. Thank you for your kind reply.

    • Hi George, congrats on being accepted to the PhD program.

      Like every other question about “what are my chances of getting a job”, I simply cannot answer this. I don’t know you as a person, I don’t know much about your field of profession, etc.

      Both technology and natural resources are hot fields here right now, so that is in your favor.

      That said, I would imagine that if you do well in your PhD and manage to meet enough people and make a good impression, you should stand a decent chance of receiving a job offer. But again, I really don’t know much about this fellowship or how it works.

      Bets of luck!

  34. Hi David,
    Well you seem to have hit the nail on its head with this article – well done! I bought and read your book ‘How to find a job in Norway’ and, I think many of us who read it thought to ourselves, “wait a minute, it’s not that easy!” Not that you said it was, but there are many unwritten challenges that you articulated well in this article. Just look at all the comments that followed! Probably the most important issue for most immigrants here in Norway, and on top, Norway has tightened the screws the last few years on immigration. Good observations all around David, many similarities even down here in Kristiansand. In fact, the south of Norway has a couple of peculiarities of its own. People reading this who live here will know what I’m talking about:-)
    Good luck to everyone and thank you David for contributing with your insights. Do let me know if you’re ever down this way.

  35. Hi David
    Thanks for your nice article.I need to know about to start my own grocery store.how much do i need for start up in Dollars.I am from india.i will b thankful to you if you can help me on this regards.


  36. HI David,

    i was granted residence permit on permanent basis with my Nordic son, and we are moving to Norway this coming march 2019, i already found a place for us to stay and potential school for my 10yrs old son, i guess my question possible to get some guidance and assistance through NAV since i do have minor norwegian son?

  37. Dear David,

    I have no idea it was that hard for one to find a job in Norway. I always thought that they’re one of the “friendliest and easiest” place to find a job for a foreigner until now. I’m actually graduating with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and minor in Communication from a university in Alabama. And, I’m currently looking for potential locations that I could relocate. So far, everything I have heard about Norway makes it sounds really interesting to just leave everything and move over there. But, I have no idea how easy would it be to find a job in Norway.

    I have been thinking about being an interpreter in Norway because I could speak, read, and write in multiple languages. My mother tongue would be Mandarin Chinese, and grew up speaking English. I could speak the Malay language and I have picked up German and still practicing it sometimes. I’m currently trying to pick up Norwegian which isn’t easy to speak unlike German.

    Anyway… Would like to say thank you for sharing your experience with many of us here.

  38. David, your article is very helpful. Thank you. I am planning to do my Masters in Norway and maybe to work there as well. I have always heard good words about Norway and Norwegians.

    I would like to make new contacts already. Suggest me some sort of apps or social websites from where I can make some friends before even coming to Norway.

    Also, I wanted to ask if Norwegians are sociable or extroverts? Because introverts like myself will be struggling a lot otherwise to get that good life. Many thanks.

  39. Hi Dave, I am Sajjad Khan from India. I have completed my Bachelors in science. I am unable to get any job in my country. I am multi-talented i can learn and do anything easily. i need any job in norway, i never went any where outside of my country. My family income is 600 US doller per month. I want to go abroad and earn. I don’t have any contact in Norway . Please help me .

  40. Hi – I was born in Norway, grew up and retired in the U.S., don’t need a job since I have sufficient income, and can pick up the Norsk language in a few weeks when amongst other Norwegians. I’m interested in moving back to Norway for my retirement. What are the problems with this?

    • Hi Marit, first you would need some approval through the immigration authorities but if you are a Norwegian citizen, then this should be no problem.

      Second, this question depends on where you currently live and where in Norway you wish to move to. Norway in general is pretty expensive so it is possible that your retirement income will not stretch as far here as it does where you currently live.

  41. Hi Dave, I find your article quite interesting. Thanks for the insight. I’m actually getting ready to move to Norway, though with a Norwegian girl yet to meet. And I hope to settle with her and find a job with my Bachelor’s degree in political science. Or a manual labour. What’s your advice ? Frank from Nigerian

  42. Hi Dave, great article! I’m currently 19 and am an apprentice in IT in the UK. I love Scandinavian culture, language and people and am currently learning Norsk. I hope to move out to Norway in a couple years time (at 21-23) but not sure where to start with finding a job. I know that IT is not the most common job in Norway and was wondering if you have any advice on if there are any cities/towns that might have jobs in this field or whether I would have to start over and find a new profession. Also, is it easier to find a job before moving or after? I understand cost of living is high and need to keep in mind that I need somewhere to live!



  43. I came to Norway in 1975 and met a girl. Got married in 1976 and had 3 children. In spite of being in the oil industry I have never had a Norwegian employer but did what I was taugh at Birmingham University use your degree to employ others as getting a proper job in Norway is impossible. After 43 years I am retired having worked all over the world but because I paid Norwegian tax and taxes where I worked I have pensions coming out of my ears and miss pubs and cricket but have a happy family. My message is that if you have a degree and employ others and then you will get a residence permit without a job..

  44. Hey Dave. Im Jacek from Poland and one of my biggest dreams is to be able to work and live in Norway. Im bechelor in Renewable Energy Sources and master in Mechatroic Enegineering, but from small city in Poland. Would it be possible to find some job there without contacts in Norway that i lack? Most of the jobs aviable at Polish sites in Norway are bircklayers or simillar. Should i just hit Norway without guaranteed job and search there?

  45. Hey,
    It’s a pretty informative article, i myself is trying to move to Norway for studying at first, Masters in Data Science, although not a field high in demand in Norway i believe, can anybody throw some light as to what would be the pros and cons, and will be able to easily get a job there in this field. Thanks.

  46. Hello sirs,Many years before at Kristiansand l have been a visitor researcher Material- Metallurgical engineer from Türkiye only a day.l have been at Oslo more one week.Sightseening and walktour around.l have visited Elkem company. Kristiansand. İ have very nice impression.25 years before. You have very nice and helpful information about to Norway living.Anyway l wish to see again.God lucy you Norway living.My best regards from Türkiye.

  47. Hi ya. Couldnt agree more with you! I’d also like to add how ‘inclusive’ they are at including you when you’re trying to make friends and fit in! They expect us to integrate but make so little effort themselves to include us in. Send me an email, i’d like to stay intouch!

  48. I’m not sure this is true. It’s arbitrary the least. The population in Norway is small and is baby sat by the government, which means for the lazy there is no incentive to work. I’ve been working in Norway for almost two years and most of the employees go on month long sick leaves , some for a whole year. I suppose it might be hard to get a job if you’re picky but there’s entry level openings all over this country. Norway having the best city in the world? I don’t know about that. I’ve toured 68 countries and not sure if 300 days of grey sky and cold constitutes as great but to each is own I guess. Its definitely true about the clannish mentality, some would consider this a bit racist but from my experience the Norwegians are a bit different than most people around the world; they can come off a bit rude and ill mannered.

  49. What a wonderful read thank you 😊 I would love to move to Norway due to the scenery and healthy lifestyle. Visiting Oslo which will be my first time in Norway this September and can’t wait. Thought I would start with the capital city first. Next year intend to visit Stavanger and go north.
    Not sure how I would manage to get work though. I teach /mentor countryside worker apprentices in south of England. So my experience and qualifications are rather niche! I have decided to start learning language too. Be great to hear any advice you have for teaching in ecology. The other option I would defo be up for, is volunteering within nature conservation as they certainly love nature (it’s why I’m drawn to Norway) with national parks that would be an awesome experience. So south west Norway most likely and north west.?
    P.s I can’t find your email address so it’s not that easy ! I’ve failed the first test clearly 😂


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