If you have a job offer, you can start a process of job relocation and immigration to Denmark.
Your Danish employer may provide you with temporary accommodation for up to 4 months, reimburse flights, visa application fees, expenses related to transportation of personal belongings, as well as offer assistance with finding a permanent rental home. Ask your employer to learn about specific conditions that apply to you.
The process of job relocation to Denmark consists of several steps.
1. Apply for a visa
If you’re a citizen of a European Economic Area (EEA) country (including the EU countries plus Iceland, Lichtenstein, and Norway), you don’t need a visa to enter Denmark. Other visa-free countries include the following:
- Europe: Andorra, North Macedonia, San Marino, Switzerland, Ukraine, United Kingdom, Vatican
- Asia-Pacific: Australia, Brunei, East Timor, Japan, Kiribati, Malaysia, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, New Zealand, Northern Marianas, Palau, Samoa, Singapore, Solomon Islands, South Korea, Taiwan, Tonga, Tuvalu, Vanuatu
- North America: Canada, Mexico, United States
- South America: Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay, Venezuela
- Central America: Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama
- Caribbean: Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Dominica, Grenada, Saint Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad and Tobago
- Western Asia: Georgia, Israel, United Arab Emirates
- Africa: Mauritius, Seychelles
Others need to apply for a Schengen visa to a Danish embassy/consulate or visa center in their country of residence. You may need to register, fill out an application, and pay fees on the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Denmark’s website before visiting the consulate or visa center in person.
You will need the following documents to apply for a Danish visa:
- One or two recent color photos (35 mm × 45 mm)
- Invitation letter from your Danish employer with its contact details, your personal information, the purpose of the journey, the period and place of stay
- Travel insurance covering the entire Schengen area for the duration of your stay with the minimum coverage of €30,000
- Job offer
- Proof that you have available accommodation in Denmark
- Flight reservations
- Proof that you have sufficient means to cover your living expenses (bank statements, payslips for the last 3 months)
- Printed visa fee receipt (€35–80 depending on the country)
- Birth certificates for your children, if applicable
When you submit your application, you will normally need to have your fingerprints recorded.
The process of getting a visa takes anywhere from 10 days to 3 weeks.
The length of stay on a visa must not exceed 90 days in any 6 months period. So you will need to apply for a residence permit as soon as possible.
2. Find temporary accommodation
After you obtain a visa, if you need any, you can come to Denmark. The first thing you should do is find a place to live. It’s recommended to rent accommodation before you travel to Denmark.
As it may be hard to find a permanent apartment at once due to the high rental demand and the need to gather all the necessary documents, allow at least 3–4 weeks to hunt for a permanent home.
Temporary accommodation can be offered by your employer. If not, you can find it on Airbnb or similar websites before you arrive in Denmark. Here is the list of websites that offer furnished apartments and hotel rooms:
Note that it’s not possible to apply for a CPR number if you’re staying in a hostel or hotel.
3. Apply for residence permit
To work in Denmark for longer than 3 months, you need to get a residence permit. As an IT worker, you can choose between three options:
- Fast-Track Scheme: you have been offered a job in Denmark by a company certified by the Danish Agency for International Recruitment and Integration (SIRI). You can find the list of companies on our website. You must also meet one of the conditions: 1) your salary offer should be no lower than DKK 436,000 a year, or 2) you are offered a position as a researcher to work longer than 90 days, or 3) you’re invited to Denmark to receive highly qualified training in the certified company or to train other employees in the certified company at a highly qualified level, or 4) you come to work in the certified company for up to 90 days.
- Pay Limit Scheme: you have been offered a job in Denmark with an annual salary of at least DKK 436,000. You’re not required to have a specific educational background or that your job is within a specific professional field.
- Positive List Scheme: you have been offered a job in Denmark included in the list of shortage occupations (you’re an IT consultant, programmer, system developer or a web developer). You must have at least 3 years of IT education at bachelor level or a professional bachelor’s degree (for web developers). Your salary and terms of employment must correspond to Danish standards. Salaries of IT workers in Denmark normally start at about DKK 35,000 – 40,000 per month.
A residence permit based on a job in Denmark allows your family to come with you to the country. A permit can be granted to your spouse, registered or cohabiting partner as well as children under the age of 18 living with you.
To apply for a Danish residence permit, you will need the following documents:
- Receipt for payment of the fee (DKK 3,215)
- Copy of all pages of your passport
- Power of attorney form (if you’re applying under the Fast-Track Scheme)
- Employment contract or job offer no older than 30 days which contains information about your salary and terms of employment and a job description
- Documentation of education relevant to the job offered
- Documentation of parts of your salary or benefits that are not included in the employment contract, e. g. paid rent or salary paid to you abroad
- Marriage or registered partnership certificate, if you’re relocating with a spouse or partner
- Birth certificates for children, if you’re relocating with children
- Certified translations. If you submit documents not written in English, German, Norwegian, Swedish or Danish, you must also submit certified translations into Danish or English
Here are the main steps to apply for a residence permit in Denmark:
1. Apply online. Create a case order ID. You will need to create a profile on the New To Denmark website with your personal information and pay fees (DKK 3,215).
Links for online application:
An application for a residence and work permit via the Fast-Track Scheme must be submitted online by your employer. You must provide your employer with a power of attorney so that they can apply on your behalf.
2. Give your biometrics no later than 14 days after you submitted your application. You can do it at a Danish diplomatic mission abroad, at a Danish local police station with facilities for recording biometrics or in SIRI’s Citizen Center (you’ll need to book an appointment).
3. Apply for a provisional permit, if applicable. If you applied under the Fast-Track Scheme, hold a valid visa or are exempt from visa requirements, you can apply to SIRI’s Citizen Center and ask for a provisional permit to begin working immediately. You must book an appointment via a link in the receipt the employer receives after submitting the application or by contacting the employer’s contact person at SIRI. You must bring your passport and the receipt of the submitted online application.
4. Receive a decision. The normal processing time is 1 month. A quick job start normally takes up to 10 days. You will get your residence permit card by post.
If you apply from abroad, you can get a residence permit valid for 1 month before you start working. It will give you the time to settle in Denmark. When you apply, you must declare that you can support yourself and any accompanying family members during this time. If you don’t declare this, your residence permit will be valid for 14 days before you start working. If you apply in Denmark, your residence permit will be valid from the day you start working.
If you’re hired for less than 4 years, your residence and work permit will normally be valid for the period of your employment. After that, you can apply for an extension. If your employment is for 4 years or more, you’ll normally get a permit valid for 4 years.
4. Get a CPR number
After you arrive in Denmark, you need to apply for a CPR number.
A CPR number (Centrale Personregister-nummer) is a 10-digit civil registration number needed to open a bank account, access your health insurance, receive a salary, pay tax, borrow books from the library, and more.
You will need the following to apply for a CPR number:
- Passport (copies of the photo page, pages with personal information and the visa).
- Residence permit.
- Birth certificates (for children under 18).
- Marriage certificate or registered partnership certificate for your spouse or partner, if applicable.
- Housing confirmation with an address in Denmark where you live. If your residence is provided by your employer, upload documentation for this. If you live in an apartment rented for a short-term on Airbnb, you can ask the owner to fill out the housing confirmation form.
- Rental contract, if applicable.
- Tax card application (for a tax card).
Here is the application process if you live in Copenhagen:
- Apply online.
- Receive a confirmation email.
- Receive an invitation email asking you to visit International House Copenhagen.
- Visit International House Copenhagen (address: Gyldenløvesgade 11, open hours: Mon-Wed: 10:00 – 15:00, Thurs: 11:00 – 15:00, Fri: 10:00 – 14:00).
- After an ID check and final approval, you will receive your CPR number.
Within 4 weeks after you applied for a CPR number, you will receive a “yellow health card” (sundhedskort) by regular post. This card entitles you to medical treatment in Denmark. When you move from one address to another within Copenhagen, you need to report your change in address or risk a fine (DKK 1,000).
5. Obtain NemID
To live in Denmark, you might also want to obtain NemID. It’s a secure login on the Internet consisting of a user ID, a password and a code card containing codes (one-time passwords). It is useful when you’re doing your online banking, viewing your tax file, finding out information from the public authorities or engaging with one of the many businesses that use NemID.
To obtain NemID, you can go to a citizen service center (Borgerservice) or request it in your bank in Denmark. You can find a citizen center near you online.
To get a NemID, you will need the following:
- ID (passport)
- CPR number
- Attesting witness who is at least 18 years old, has a CPR number and a valid photo identification
6. Buy a Danish SIM card
To live and work in Denmark, you may also need a local SIM card. You can buy it at Copenhagen airport, convenience stores (e. g. Netto supermarket chain), gas stations (e. g. OK gas stations) or from one of the retail stores of mobile phone service providers. The card itself can be free.
The main mobile providers in Denmark are TDC, Telenor, Telia, and 3 (Tre). They all have good coverage throughout the country.
All network operators have stopped their prepaid offers and sell only contracts that require a Danish personal number (CPR).
Unlimited calls and texts are common on many plans. Monthly packages cost between DKK 140 and 299.
7. Open a bank account in Denmark
To get your salary in Denmark and pay for your rental home, you need to have a bank account in the country. Many other payments may also require a local bank account.
Here are popular banks in Denmark:
- Danske Bank (danskebank.com)
- Jyske Bank (jyskebank.com)
- Nordea Bank Danmark (nordea.dk)
- Nykredit (nykredit.dk)
- Sparekassen (spks.dk)
- Spar Nord (sparnord.dk)
- Sydbank (sydbank.dk)
- Vestjysk Bank (vestjyskbank.dk)
You can use Pengepriser.dk (in Danish) to compare bank conditions. Danish banks do not differ much from each other, and most of them have mobile applications. There is no cashback and no push notifications, but there can be SMS informing.
Many Danish banks charge for accounts, debit cards, transfers, and more. Some banks apply regular charges to keep your account open. There may also be a fee for withdrawing cash from ATMs operated by different banks.
You will need the following documents to open a bank account in Denmark:
- Photo ID such as a passport (some banks also require a notarized copy)
- CPR number
- Proof of address in Denmark (recent utility bills or a rental contract). If you have your a “yellow health card” (sundhedskort), you can also use it to confirm your address
- Employment contract with your salary indicated (some banks may even require the personal presence of your employer to verify the information about the money)
- Completed and signed Customer information form (provided by the bank)
- Declaration confirming your tax status from the authorities in the country where you are liable for tax
- Minimum opening deposit amount which you need to pay in to set up the account (required by some banks)
Banks have their own policies regarding documents, so check before you visit the branch. Danske Bank also charges an establishment fee of DKK 1,000.
Banks in Denmark tend to work very thoroughly and slowly. Your application for a bank account can be considered for 2 weeks. In case of a successful decision, your card and PIN code will be sent by regular mail to your residential address in Denmark.
Don’t forget to assign your account as your NemKonto — it’s an account to which your salary and state benefits will come by default. You can select your NemKonto on nemkonto.dk if you have NemID or you can contact your bank.
8. Find a permanent place to live
It may be hard to find a permanent apartment quickly. Good properties are rented out within a couple of days, and there may be several applicants per apartment or house.
You can rent either from a private landlord or a housing association. In housing associations, the rent is typically lower, but they are often difficult to obtain for foreign nationals because they are usually let out based on a waiting list.
Long-term rentals in Denmark can be found on the following property websites:
Some of these sites are in Danish, so familiarize yourself with some basic Danish housing vocabulary:
- At leje = to rent
- En lejlighed = an apartment
- Lejebolig = a rental apartment
- At leje en lejlighed = to rent an apartment
- Boliger til leje = residential property to let
Some of the property websites in Denmark ask you to pay a fee to be able to contact landlords. If you need to pay a fee, always check what you are paying for.
You’re recommended to avoid some of the Danish cities’ districts officially deemed as ghettos. These districts are characterized by high levels of criminality and a low share of educated residents. For example, Aldersrogade, Bispeparken, Lundtoftegade, Mjølnerparke, Tingbjerg/Utterslevhuse are among Copenhagen ghettos. You can find the full list of Danish ghettos on the website of the Danish Transport, Construction and Housing Authority.
When renting an apartment or house for the long term in Denmark, you may be required to have the following:
- Rental deposit — normally one month’s deposit for a room and 2–3 months’ deposit for a flat (not including utilities). Don’t pay any deposit in advance without having a contract and never pay in cash. This deposit will be refunded at the end of the term unless you damage the landlord’s property.
- Rent for the first month. Your landlord can require up to 3 months’ prepaid rent.
You must report any defects in the apartment (if you find any) no later than 14 days after you have taken on lease. Otherwise, you may have to pay for the defects yourself.
Normally, utilities such as heating, water, and gas are not included in the rent. If they are, it will be specified in your rental agreement.
In Denmark, it’s common to pay a fixed prepayment (“a conto”) that is included in your rent to cover the cost of utilities. You may receive a refund or be asked to pay more depending on your consumption.
Heating and water supply are normally provided when you move in. However, you need to personally contact service providers before you can start using electricity or gas in your new home. Note that you need to have a CPR number to use the services of Danish supply companies.
You may need to make a contract with an Internet provider yourself. One of the popular providers in Fullrate. When you have access to the Internet in Denmark, you need to pay a media license fee (“medielicens” in Danish). It costs DKK 1,927 per year. You must pay this fee if you have a TV set, radio, computer, smartphone or tablet with Internet access.
Most long-term apartments in Denmark are rented out unfurnished. However, there may be kitchen cabinets, a stove, refrigerator, and sometimes a built-in wardrobe. There are usually no washing machines in Danish apartments but there might be laundry and a drying room in the basement. Residents usually book the washing time through a mobile application. Many residential buildings also have parking lots for residents.
You will typically have up to 3 months’ notice to terminate the lease.