When people move abroad, one of the first things they consider is whether the move will be beneficial for their children. To assist with this decision the Expat Insider Survey evaluated 45 countries and rated the opinions of expats across a wide range of subjects including family well-being, education, childcare costs and healthcare. Based on these responses a score was given to each country based on the overall quality of family life that expats living in these countries enjoy. There were no surprises amongst the front-runners, but further down the list there were a few.
Top 5 countries for expat children
1. Finland comes out tops
The weather in Finland doesn’t seem to influence expats’ appreciation of their families’ well-being. In 2106 Finland came 2nd and this year it took 1st place with over 70% of respondent highly rating the country’s education and the general health, safety and well-being of their children in Finland. Finland offers extensive benefits to expecting and adoptive parents including, a maternity allowance for four months and extended maternity leave, with fathers getting 54 days off work.
Sweden came in second with the majority of respondents, 63%, saying they were very impressed with the quality and affordability of childcare and education. Over three-quarters of expats also reported that they had noticed an improvement in the quality of their children’s lives after moving to Sweden – especially those with young children, who are able to avail themselves of 480 days of leave per child at 80% of their salary. Parents can divide this time up between them, although one parent must take a minimum of 90 days. Parents can enjoy this parental leave all the way up until a child turns eight – and this applies to every child!
3. The Czech Republic
The Czech Republic came in third, scoring strongly on the work-life balance indices with the costs of food, housing and transport being far more affordable than many other countries. The affordable lifestyle means that parents can spend more time with their families and save more for holidays, large expenses and their retirement. Schooling at public schools in the Czech Republic is free, even for children of expats, although the main language of instruction is Czech. There are also a wide variety of good, relatively affordable private schools that offer bilingual education with English as their main language of instruction.
Denmark rose up the ranks by a huge 19 positions climbing from 23rd to 4th place, receiving praise for its high standards of education. It also climbed from 27th to 6th place when it came to the availability of childcare and education – making it one of the biggest climbers in this category.
Norway’s public education system is regarded as one of the best in Europe as schooling is compulsory for all children from age six to sixteen. Schooling often starts even earlier than this, this with education often starting at one- year old when children are placed in daycare. Daycare is funded by the state until the age of three. The work culture in Norway also encourages a good work and family balance with most parents leaving around 4 pm to return to their families.
If you’re thinking of moving abroad with your family and need any advice about your financial emigration, contact us today and we’ll help you on the path to financial freedom in your new home.