Which European country should I give a go?


I could not find an 'advice' or just  a 'Europe' section, so posting in the forum for Germany, which was on the top of my list to move to a while ago.

I wrote a very detailed post, but figured I'd just ask objectively.

Which European (preferably Scandinavian) country is a good country to settle in ?

All I expect from the country/society are

- Software engineering jobs
- Free (or very cheap) education all the way to uni for kids
- Free (or very cheap) medical/healthcare/medicare
- Very high standard of living - I know its relative - but you get the point.
- Safe, peaceful and preferably has a laid back style of living
- The availability of vegetarian/green foods is non negotiable. Although I highly doubt I will not find an Indian grocery store in a city or in a 100 km radius almost anywhere in the world, I can get Indian spices posted from India or buy them off ebay or whatever the local version of it is.

Learning a new language is no biggie. I am in mid 30s. Will move with a wife and two kids (whose total age is less than 4). I have lived extensively in India, USA and Australia and before I hit my forties want to give living in another country a go and decide where I want to settle down. Would someone be kind enough to give some advice on this ?


Personally based on your criteria, I'd recommend Sweden over Germany.  It's a top 10 country for software engineering, standard of living is excellent, better than Germany I'd say.  It's very safe and peaceful with a very clean and beautiful environment. Green/bio food there is second to none, and English is widely spoken there along with Swedish, whereas in Germany you really must know German to survive and integrate in daily life.  I can't comment about the healthcare costs...you'd have to research that.

Also, there is a general "European Union" forum, though it receives little traffic....so your post probably will get more visibility here.

Expat.com Experts Team.

All Scandinavian and most EU countries fit your requirements.
I'd just go wherever I find a job!

Thank you for replying.

I am reading some very positive things (and a few negatives) about Sweden.
When I started this process in my head, the countries, priority wise were
1) Germany 2) Norway 3) Denmark and 4) Sweden

I excluded Germany. As although,, in addition to my requirements, it provides me with a work culture suitable to my temperament (No nonsense - straightforward- get it done). I am in awe of their work culture. So I wanted to experience it. However, in my personal opinion, the recent influx of unverified refugees is almost bound to take their society on a difficult road

When compared Norway to Sweden, Sweden is able to offer everything that Norway can at a much reasonable price. So, Norway was out.

Between Denmark and Sweden I am finding the Swedish have more IT opportunities. However Sweden''s existing issues with refugee integration are a concern. But this is just off the media and I know media anywhere can be dramatic.

Thanks for replying.

This move, if I make it, will probably be the last one I make in foreseeable future. Can't keep flogging kids around to different countries because daddy wanted to find a decent country to bring them up in (not that there is much wrong with India, US or Australia) - but I hope you see what I mean.

In the past employers have found me to be of great value as they think I am skilled. So I am guessing scoring a job will not be a major problem. What is important is to take a calculated risk - so researching on countries is paramount. Í will tell you what bothers me though. Sadly, as I age, I read more and more companies wanting younger people to work for them - who probably don't want work life balance and will slog 20 hours a day in exchange for some free food and a gym. This phenomenon is global.

Denabryl :

However, in my personal opinion, the recent influx of unverified refugees is almost bound to take their society on a difficult road.

Integrating a million refugees is a challenge, but it will (in my opinion) not cause much social upheaval - there is nothing of that sort visible yet. On one hand, these are mostly young, hardworking and childbearing people, which our society needs to prevent ageing and economic decline. On the other hand, this shows how open and tolerant towards foreigners the Germans are - probably something you'd value and which is lacking in many oher European countries. Remember that you, too, will be in a potentially marginalized minority wherever you move!

Vegetarian and Indian food is available in most towns in the EU.  Education and health care is available in all countries, you might have to pay something but the state funds most, which is why they US calls them Communists.
Depending on the software you want to write
Finland, Sweden for telecomms, automototive
Norway for oil, gas, gaming
Germany, Denmark for all the above and everything else (aeropace, automotive)
Where you work depends on how cold you can take it in winter

Thanks for replying. I can be writing any software. Doesn't matter. That's only an occupation I want to be in, say, for the next 5 years. With age, I think I am getting a bit inclined towards traditional jobs. Trades would be a bit hard for my body to get used to - but any thing in the services sector. Property management or Heavy Vehicle driving etc. Or may be move towards a managerial position within IT.

I can take in any winter. I love the cold weather. Isn't getting a good pair of thermals going to address any winter, any where ? I love rain and snow too. Just as much as I love a good sunny day.

I used to be able to learn any language very quickly. Recently I tried to pick up one of the dialects of the Autralian aborigines and found it very challenging. So I think I want to stay as much away from a place which expects me to pick up the local language instantaneously. With classes and a bit of effort, I think I will be able to pick up a new language .

So since the choice of writing software is no longer a criteria and the EU nations provide healthcare and education ( I could get picking and want to choose the cheapest option to narrow it down) which country do you think could provide the most positive and diverse experience ?

alanharp22 :

which is why they US calls them Communists.

Who calls whom "communist"? I never heard that.
OIn fact, there are no communist countries left in Europe (and very few in the world). It's a thing of the past.
(And, by a narrower definition, no country ever was communist, only socialist - which is a step towards becoming communist. But that's a discussion for purists.)

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