Guidance

Living in Norway

Official information for UK nationals moving to or living in Norway, including guidance on residency, passports and driving.

What you should do

You should:

Coronavirus

You should follow the advice of the Norwegian Government and your local authority. You can also read our Norway travel advice for our latest guidance.

Stay up to date

You should:

You can also:

Visas and residency

Check the entry requirements for Norway.

Residency

If you are resident in Norway before the transition period ends on 31 December 2020, you will be able to stay.

If you move to Norway before 31 December 2020, you need to register with the Norwegian Directorate of Immigration (UDI). You’ll need to fill in a UDI application form and book an appointment. You must bring the completed application and any requested documents with you to the appointment.

Read the UDI guidance on types of residence permits and the documents needed to apply.

You can apply for a residency permit at your local service centre for foreign workers (SUA).

Once you have your residency permit, you can apply for a Norwegian personal number from the local people register (Folkeregister). Read more on the Norwegian Directorate of Immigration website.

All UK nationals resident in Norway by 31 December 2020, including those who have previously registered, will need to get a new residency card. This new residency card is scheduled to be introduced in January 2021.

Read the Norwegian government guidance on the new residency permit.

If there are changes to residency application processes, we will update this guidance as soon as information is available. You should sign up for updates to this guidance.

If you move to Norway after 31 December 2020, different immigration rules will apply. Read the Norwegian government guidance on moving to Norway from 1 January 2021.

UK Nationals Support Fund

The government has announced funding for organisations to provide practical support to UK nationals who may have difficulty completing their residency applications. 

This support is available only to those who need additional help. This may include pensioners, disabled people, people living in remote areas or who have mobility difficulties.

The services available for people who need this additional support include:

  • answering questions about residency applications, such as the documents required and application procedure
  • guiding individuals through the process, if necessary
  • supporting people facing language barriers or difficulty accessing technology

In Norway, this support is being provided by The AIRE Centre. If you or someone you know may have difficulty completing the paperwork, you can contact them using the details below to discuss how they may be able to help you.

The AIRE Centre

Email: eurobrits@airecentre.org

The AIRE Centre website

Passports and travel

The rules on travel will stay the same until the transition period ends on 31 December 2020. During this time you can continue to travel to countries in the Schengen area or elsewhere in the EU with your UK passport.

You can apply for or renew your British passport from Norway.

Passports from 1 January 2021

Check your passport is valid for travel before you book your trip.

From 1 January 2021, you must have at least 6 months left on an adult or child passport to travel to most countries in Europe (not including Ireland). This requirement does not apply if you are entering or transiting to Norway, and you are in scope of the EEA EFTA Separation Agreement.

If you renewed your current passport before the previous one expired, extra months may have been added to its expiry date. Any extra months on your passport over 10 years may not count towards the 6 months needed.

You will need to renew your passport before travelling if you do not have enough time left on your passport.

As a non-EEA national, different border checks will apply when travelling to other EU or Schengen area countries. You may need to show a return or onward ticket and that you have enough money for your stay. You may also have to use separate lanes from EU, EEA and Swiss citizens when queueing. Your passport may be stamped for visits to these countries.

Entry requirements

From 1 January 2021, you will be able to travel to other Schengen area countries for up to 90 days in any 180-day period without a visa for purposes such as tourism. This is a rolling 180-day period.

To stay for longer, to work or study, or for business travel, you will need to meet the entry requirements set out by the country to which you are travelling. This could mean applying for a visa or work permit. You may also need to get a visa if your visit would take you over the 90 days in 180 days limit.

Periods of stay authorised under a visa or permit will not count against the 90-day limit. Travel to the UK and Ireland will not change.

Different rules will apply to EU countries that are not part of the Schengen Area. Check each country’s travel advice page for information on entry requirements.

Driving in Norway

Driving licence rules will stay the same until at least 31 December 2020.

You should exchange your UK licence for a Norwegian licence. You can still use your Norwegian licence in the UK for short visits or exchange it for a UK licence without taking a test if you return to live in the UK.

For information on driving in Norway, read our guidance on:

Bringing a UK-registered vehicle to Norway

Read our guidance on taking a vehicle out of the UK.

You can read the European Union’s guidance on car registration rules and taxes in Norway. You may be exempt from some of these taxes. If so, you will need certificates of exemption.

Working in Norway

See working in an EU country.

Some jobs may require a UK criminal records check.

Once you have a job offer, you need to apply for a personal number at your local police station or your local service centre for foreign workers.

If you are resident in Norway on or before 31 December 2020, your right to work will not change as long as you remain resident in Norway.

Education and professional qualifications

Get your UK professional qualifications recognised in Norway before 31 December 2020. For help with this:

If you hold a professional qualification that has already been recognised by an EEA country, it will still be valid after 31 January 2020.

If you have not had your professional qualifications recognised, you can submit an application under the current rules until 31 December 2020.

Studying in Norway

If you are resident in Norway on or before 31 December 2020, your right to student finance will remain unchanged, as long as you remain resident in Norway.

Healthcare

Social security coordination is covered by the Separation Agreement for those residing in Norway. Current healthcare arrangements will continue to apply in full to UK nationals who are resident in Norway before the transition period ends on 31 December 2020, for as long as they remain in scope of the agreement. This includes students and S1 holders.

Make sure you are correctly registered for healthcare as a resident in Norway.

Read the guidance on who is able to access healthcare in Norway and how to register.

You’ll pay into the Norwegian National Insurance Scheme (NIS) through your income tax. The NIS covers basic medical services, although you will sometimes have to pay a small fee. Children under 16 get free medical care.

State healthcare: S1

If you live in Norway and receive an exportable UK pension, contribution-based Employment Support Allowance or another exportable benefit, you may currently be entitled to state healthcare paid for by the UK. You will need to apply for a certificate of entitlement known as an S1 certificate.

Read our guidance on how to get an S1 form.

European Health Insurance Card (EHIC)

If you are resident in Norway, you must not use an EHIC from the UK to access healthcare in Norway.

When you travel from Norway for a temporary stay in another European Economic Area (EEA) country or Switzerland, you can use an EHIC to access state-provided healthcare in that country. During that short stay:

You can also continue to use your EHIC, as you did before, until the transition period ends on 31 December 2020. If you’re travelling to other countries make sure you have comprehensive health insurance.

You should also read guidance on:

You can only change your GP twice in a year. Find English-speaking doctors and dentists in Norway.

Ask your doctor about a health insurance receipt card at your first GP visit.

Money and tax

The UK has a double taxation agreement with Norway to ensure you do not pay tax on the same income in both countries. Ask the relevant tax authority your questions about double taxation relief.

Existing double taxation arrangements for UK nationals living in Norway have not changed.

You can read our guidance on:

We recommend you get professional advice on paying tax in Norway. Find an English-speaking lawyer in Norway.

If you’re working on the Norwegian continental shelf, it’s compulsory to become member of the Norwegian National Insurance Scheme. You must pay National Insurance contributions to Norway even if you don’t pay taxes to Norway.

National Insurance

You may be able to pay National Insurance while abroad in order to protect your State Pension and entitlement to other benefits and allowances.

If you are employed or self-employed in the EU or EEA and you have a UK-issued A1/E101 form, you will remain subject to UK legislation until the end date on the form.

Banking

Most people living in Europe should not see any change to their banking after 31 December 2020. Your bank or finance provider should contact you if they need to make any changes to your product or the way they provide it. If you have any concerns about whether you might be affected, contact your provider or seek independent financial advice.

Pensions

You will need to tell the UK government offices that deal with your benefits, pension and tax if you are moving or retiring abroad.

If you retire to Norway, you can claim:

Life certificates for UK State Pensions

If you get a ‘life certificate’ from the UK Pension Service, you need to respond as soon as possible – your payments may be suspended if you don’t.

Pensions after 31 January 2020

Social security co-ordination is covered by the Separation Agreement for those residing in Norway. Current benefit arrangements will continue to apply in full to UK nationals who are resident in Norway before the transition period ends on 31 December 2020, for as long as they reside in an EEA EFTA state (Iceland, Liechtenstein or Norway). This includes the right to an uprated UK State Pension.

Benefits

You will need to tell the UK government offices that deal with your benefits, pension and tax if you are moving or retiring abroad.

You may still be able to claim some UK benefits like child and disability benefits if you live in Norway. You can:

Many income-related benefits such as Pension Credit and Housing Benefit cannot be paid to you if you’re abroad for more than 4 weeks.

You may be eligible to claim some Norwegian social security benefits after you’ve worked 6 months continually – see Norwegian social security benefits.

You can request proof of the time you’ve worked in the UK from HMRC if you are asked for this.

Benefits after 31 January 2020

Social security coordination is covered by the Separation Agreement. Current benefit arrangements will continue to apply in full to UK nationals who are resident in Norway before the transition period ends on 31 December 2020, for as long as they reside in Norway.

Voting

If you’re resident in Norway, you can vote in local elections.

You may be able to vote in some UK elections. You can:

Births, deaths and getting married

If your child is born in Norway you will need to register the birth abroad.

If someone dies in Norway you can:

Find out how you can get married abroad.

You may also need:

Accommodation and buying property

Read our guidance on buying a property abroad.

Pets

For travel to EEA and EFTA countries from the UK, pet owners should check the requirements of their destination country.

Read guidance on travelling with pets.

If you’re travelling with your pet for the first time you must visit your vet to get a pet passport.

Read guidance travelling with pets across Norwegian borders from the Norwegian Food Safety Authority.

Emergencies

Norway’s emergency numbers are:

  • 110 for fire brigade
  • 112 for police
  • 113 for ambulance
  • 120 for emergency at sea

If you’re the victim of crime, have been arrested, or are affected by a crisis abroad, contact the British Embassy Oslo.

Returning to the UK

Tell the UK and Norwegian authorities if you are returning to the UK permanently.

To move your pension to the UK, contact the International Pension Centre.

If you get healthcare in Norway through the S1 form, you must contact the Overseas Healthcare Team on +44 (0)191 218 1999 to make sure your S1 is cancelled at the right time.

Read the guidance on returning to the UK permanently which includes information on, amongst other things, tax, access to services and bringing family members.

Disclaimer

Please note that this information is provided as a guide only. Definitive information should be obtained from the Norwegian authorities. The Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office will not be liable for any inaccuracies in this information.

Published 26 June 2013
Last updated 7 September 2020 + show all updates
  1. Passports and travel section updated to include information on passport validity and entry requirements when travelling to other European countries from January 2021

  2. Visas and residency section updated to include information about the new residency permit

  3. Visas and residency section updated to include information about how to access the UK National Support Fund for those who may find it harder to complete their residency applications.

  4. Brexit update: includes further details on passport validity and how to get your professional qualifications recognised if the UK leaves the EU with a deal

  5. Brexit update: check you have correct documentation for travelling - see the passports and travel section for further information

  6. EU Exit update: added information to Passports and travel after the UK leaves the EU and Returning to the UK sections

  7. EU Exit: updated information for UK nationals in healthcare, driving, residency and visas, pensions and passports

  8. Living in Norway guide update

  9. We have updated the contact details you need to apply for an S1 form.

  10. Updated information on passports: you must use the checker tool to see if your passport is still valid for your trip

  11. EU Exit update: Added announcement about the UK and EEA/EFTA states striking an agreement to protect citizens’ rights in a no deal scenario

  12. EU Exit update: updated information on access to healthcare

  13. EU Exit update: updated information on pensions and driving

  14. EU Exit update: link added to EEA EFTA Separation Agreement

  15. EU exit update: New information in residency and visa section on draft withdrawal agreement in principle between the UK and EU. Plus information on travelling with pets in Europe in pet section.

  16. Complete revision of guidance to ensure it's up to date and accurate.

  17. First published.