Top 12 Best Countries in Europe to Live and Work


Top 12 Best Countries in Europe to Live and Work

Europe is a continent, also recognized as a part of Eurasia, located entirely in the Northern Hemisphere and mostly in the Eastern Hemisphere. Comprising the westernmost peninsulas of Eurasia, it shares the continental landmass of Afro-Eurasia with both Asia and Africa.

Europe is an epicentre for expatriates, with 2.7 million foreigners moving to the EU. There are several reasons internationals move to Europe, including better job opportunities, higher salaries, a higher standard of living, and better government support.

When you plan your move, it’s important to remember that some countries may be better suited for you than others. For that reason, you should do extensive research and find out the European countries that are the best for expats.

Foreigners migrate to Europe for a variety of reasons, including greater career prospects, higher salaries, a higher standard of living, and better government support. When making your migration plans, keep in mind that some countries may be better for you than others. As a result, you should conduct considerable research to determine which are the best places in Europe to live and work.

Thinking about starting a new life in a new country?

This article has rounded up top 12 best of the most popular places in Europe to live and work.


Advantages to live and work European Countries

Moving to Europe comes with several advantages that include:

·  The option to travel without a visa to other European countries.

·  Access to affordable national healthcare plans.

·  Access to high salaries.

·  The opportunity to live in one of the well-developed countries globally.

·  The opportunity to live in a safe country.

·  A better work/life balance.

·  Access to famous historical sights and green spaces.

Also read: Top 15 Most Developed Countries in Africa

List of Top 12 best Countries in Europe to Live and Work

Below are list of the top 12 best countries in Europe to live and work.

These countries are the best when measuring the quality of life, healthcare, social, physical, and financial security they offer to their citizens and residents.

1)    Germany

2)    Portugal

3)    Spain

4)    Luxembourg,

5)    The United Kingdom

6)    Finland

7)    Iceland

8)    Ireland

9)    Switzerland

10) Belgium

11) The Netherlands

12) Greece

Let us examine them one after the other.



Germany has the highest number of expats in Europe. Migrating to Germany is easier than moving to other EU countries because it has one of the greatest economies and various immigration avenues. With state-sponsored program well underway, motivating local businesses to achieve all kinds of interesting and inventive programs to recruit and retain their top employees.

Germany is one of the best countries in Europe to live and work. Its capital city, Berlin, is a social hotspot for those who enjoy getting out and meeting new people, so acclimating to the culture is simple. If you have a skill that is in demand in Germany, you can apply for a work visa.

Top 12 Best Countries in Europe to Live and Work

Also, the challenge of Germany’s aging workforce is quite real, and the skills gap is only going to get worse over the coming decade. This could indicate long-term career opportunities or possibly a lifetime job.

Germany’s largest cities range from ultra-modern and business-oriented to historic and aesthetically charming. Germans enjoy being outside, and every city has well-planned bike paths that can be used for both leisure and commuting.



Portugal is one of the best countries in Europe for expats. Its popularity stems from its favourable climate, economic development, excellent education opportunities, and outstanding quality of life. Portugal is relatively cheap for most expats, and the living expenses are significantly lower outside of Lisbon.

Top 12 Best Countries in Europe to Live and Work

Additionally, Portugal is well known for welcoming foreigners and having plenty of social opportunities for cultural integration, making it one of the easiest countries to settle down in for expats.

If you don’t need a visa to visit Portugal, you can usually stay for 90 days and use this opportunity to explore the country. Afterwards, you have plenty of opportunities to move to Portugal with long-term visas or retirement visas; for wealthy expats, there’s even a Golden Visa option.



What is a list of the best countries in Europe to live and work without Spain? Expats can move to Spain through different means. Individuals who wish to work independently, for example, might apply for a freelancing visa, while those with sufficient financial resources can take advantage of Spain’s Golden Visa program.

Spain has a lower cost of living when compared to the rest of Europe, with rent, food, and transportation all being less expensive than in the United Kingdom. With long mild seasons, the Spanish climate is usually recognized as one of the best in Europe. The fact that most people working in Spain get roughly 36 days off a year contributes to the country’s good quality of life.

Top 12 Best Countries in Europe to Live and Work

Additional vacation time reduces stress by allowing those who work in Spain to spend more time sightseeing, relaxing, and socializing. Spain has one of the most extensive healthcare systems in Europe, which explains why the country has the greatest life expectancy in Europe, at 83.2 years. A Mediterranean diet combined with a relaxed lifestyle and a warm climate results in naturally robust health.

Furthermore, if you work in Spain, your employer will cover your social security, allowing you to take advantage of free healthcare.

Also read: Top 15 Most Developed Countries in the World


This small European country has one of the highest GDP per capita, and it was ranked the second-richest country in the world for several years. As a result, Luxembourg makes one of the best countries to move to. Especially considering that more than 40% of the population is foreign.

It offers an excellent quality of life, great opportunities for business technology and innovation, and it has one of the highest salaries in Europe. Plus, it’s bordered by Germany, Belgium, and France, which are only several hours away from Luxembourg, making it an ideal place for those who want to explore other countries in Europe.

Top 12 Best Countries in Europe to Live and Work

Moreover, Luxembourg also has three official languages, and most of the population can speak English very well, so communication is rarely an obstacle to settling down.

However, Luxembourg’s most significant disadvantage is that along with the highest GDP per capita and high salaries, living costs are also very high compared to other European states. Plus, immigration routes to Luxembourg are restricted, and in reality, it’s challenging to relocate there as a permanent resident.


The United Kingdom

The United Kingdom is one of Europe’s most economically developed places, with numerous job opportunities, start-ups, and freelance labor, as well as social and health advantages. Because of immigration, the United Kingdom boasts of a varied spectrum of cultures. Working in the UK exposes you to a wide range of philosophy, architecture, art, literature, comedy, music, cinema, and sports.
Top 12 Best Countries in Europe to Live and Work

The culture of the United Kingdom consists of a mix of modern and traditional entertainment and activities, ranging from world-famous museums to contemporary art galleries. All residents of the United Kingdom have access to free public healthcare, including emergency care. Furthermore, the United Kingdom has an excellent private healthcare system with a wide range of private healthcare coverage and insurances at varied costs making it one of the best places in Europe to live and work.
The UK’s only downside is that it is no longer a member of the EU, which means its residents do not have the same rights as other EU members and their freedom of movement is limited.



According to the World Happiness Report, Finland keeps scoring high as the happiest country in the world, so no wonder many expats are attracted to this Nordic country.

Top 12 Best Countries in Europe to Live and Work

It offers social and economic security and one of the best education systems globally, making it ideal for families to settle down.

Yet, many expats in online forums report that Finland is difficult to adapt due to a complicated language and a lack of social and leisure activities. If you are a social person who enjoys a lifestyle packed with activities, then Finland may not be the ideal place for you, especially if you don’t like cold weather.


Ireland’s economy is currently one of the strongest in Europe, and for this reason, it has earned the label “The Celtic Tiger.” The best aspect is that the economy has continued to develop after the Brexit vote. The Silicon Docks in Dublin are well-known as a tech center, but the development is not limited to Dublin.
Top 12 Best Countries in Europe to Live and Work

The growth is being seen in cities all around the country. Big tech companies like AppleFacebookTwitter, and Google have all chosen Ireland as the location for their European headquarters. Working for one of these multinational companies will give you a good salary – the average monthly wage in Ireland is 2,193.07 Euros.

Also, the rest of Europe is only a short distance away from Ireland. A number of other airlines offer low-cost flights from Ireland. Once you arrive in Ireland, you’ll realize that it’s common for people to fly to another country just for a weekend get-away. You should choose Ireland if you will like to explore countries in Europe during any break or vacation that you have.

The downside to living and working in Ireland is the cost of living which is slightly higher in most countries in Europe.



Iceland is another Nordic country with a high GDP per capita and scores within the top 20 in healthcare, education, and economic development. Moreover, according to the Global Peace Index report, Iceland has ranked the safest place to live.

Additionally, expats especially those from large urban areas are attracted to the mesmerizing nature and stunning views that Iceland offers.

Top 12 Best Countries in Europe to Live and Work

To move to Iceland, you need to have a valid visa. 

For example, you have work lined up and you can apply for a work visa or have a partner with Icelandic citizenship that you want to join there. But, keep in mind that Iceland, like other Nordic countries, has been reported as more challenging to settle down due to the weather conditions and the reserved nature of the locals.


Switzerland is a diverse country that welcomes foreign employees; about 20% of the population is made up of permanent and temporary foreign workers. In addition, there are four official languages: German, French, Italian, and English.
Top 12 Best Countries in Europe to Live and Work

Because English is widely spoken, English-speaking workers have numerous chances. Earnings are rated high in comparison to most other countries across the world; in fact, they are ranked third-highest among all Economic Cooperation and DevelopmentOrganization (OECD) member countries.

If you want to advance in your career, Switzerland is a great place to go because salaries in similar work roles can be double or even triple those in other European nations. Swiss cities are also widely regarded as having the finest quality of life in the world.


Also read: Top 10 Best Universities to Study Law in Canada

Belgium is one of Europe’s most interesting and best places to live and work in Europe. It is multicultural and diversified, giving it an advantage over a number of other nations. It boasts high-quality infrastructure, strong connectivity, a good work-life balance, and plenty of things to see and do. Belgians, on the whole, have a good work-life balance. They work to live rather than live to work, but they manage to love their work in general. 
Top 12 Best Countries in Europe to Live and Work

They do, however, ensure that both work and vacation receive equal attention because they are huge enthusiasts for the good things in life. Belgium is a popular tourist destination, particularly in towns like Brussels, Bruges, Antwerp, Ghent, and Ypres. As a result, summer and part-time jobs in the tourism and hospitality industries are numerous. Volunteering in Belgium is a wonderful idea if you want to strengthen your CV and develop your language skills while also demonstrating your capacity to operate in a bilingual environment. Belgium is a great place to go if you are looking to find a work-life balance.


The Netherlands

Although the Netherlands is small, it is rich in fresh work opportunities. Foreigners living and working in the Netherlands can advance their careers by joining one of the numerous international companies with a presence in the Netherlands. Small firms in the Netherlands benefit from the Dutch government’s efforts to reduce bureaucracy, grant tax incentives, and keep government regulations up to date.
Top 12 Best Countries in Europe to Live and Work

One of the reasons the Netherlands is one of the best places in Europe to live and work is the strong economy, which offers a diverse range of job and career prospects. Also, the Dutch government is always coming up with new ways to recruit highly qualified immigrants and entrepreneurs, such as startup visa residence permit.

The Netherlands enables a very active social life; residents and workers are not permitted to work more than 60 hours per week, and the typical workweek is between 36 and 40 hours. This allows Dutch workers to see what the Netherlands has to offer while also immersing themselves in the Dutch culture and way of life.


Last, but definitely not least on the list of the best countries in Europe to live and work is Greece. The Greek government has encouraged a large number of foreign businesses to relocate to Athens. In recent years, the city has experienced a significant increase in the presence of multinational companies growing operations outside.

Top 12 Best Countries in Europe to Live and Work

Because they are relocating their company to Athens, they must recruit multilingual speakers to join their staff – and they are giving substantial income to do so. Many employers are offering attractive bonus packages to candidates interested in relocating to Greece. The opportunities include a nice relocation package and even seminars to help new workers fit into Greek culture.

As a member of their multicultural team, you’ll have access to a variety of perks, like unique discounts, health insurance, a relaxed dress code, and even training in cutting-edge technology, providing you the opportunity to improve your expertise while making money! Although earnings in Greece may be lower than in other European countries, food and beverage expenses, as well as lodging expenditures, are significantly lower.


Also read: What makes a country developed?

What You Need to Know Before Moving to European Countries

No matter where or why you are moving, it’s always difficult to get used to your new environment.

Follow these guidelines to make the move to Europe easier for you:

·  Learn the language: Before you move, try to pick up some common words and phrases. This will help you long-term when you need help during the moving process, plus any local who sees you are trying to learn their language will be more likely to welcome you and assist you if you need it. Don’t assume that everyone in Europe knows English, even though multiple languages are common.

·  Find accommodation: You must ensure that you have secured a place to stay when you transfer to Europe. You can choose from several options like renting a temporary Airbnb or staying at a hostel until you find a permanent place. Most expats recommend you visit the country first (if you have visa-free access to Europe) and meet with a real estate agent to find a place to stay in.

·   Prepare health insurance: While most countries in Europe offer national health care plans, it takes a couple of months until your insurance is valid when you first move there. Before you move, purchase travel insurance and a basic health insurance plan that will cover you during that time. VisaGuide.World provides detailed information about what are the best health insurance options for expats, information on how to get it, coverage, costs, etc.

·  Read up on social customs: Every place has its customs and traditions, some of which may be entirely contradictory to those you are familiar with. So, try to read about some of the most common customs in the country you are moving to.

·   Prepare for culture shock: Culture shock can still happen and take you by surprise despite your preparation. So, be prepared to deal with many changes at once and take one step at a time until you get accustomed to your new place.

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