Finland


Finland voted the most family friendly country in the world by expats

by Ray Clancy on February 15, 2017

Finland is the top country in the world to bring up a family thanks to its childcare and education, according to expats.

Not a single expat had anything negative to say about Finland and highlighted the cost and provision of childcare and education as being the best.

The expats, who took part in an InterNations survey, evaluated health, education, safety and family friendliness as well as the overall quality of life for families.

Finland came out top, followed by the Czech Republic, Israel, Austria, Sweden, Norway, Australia, Taiwan, Belgium and Germany.

Finland topped the poll, up from second place in the previous survey, coming out top in every subcategory apart from family well-being in which it was placed fourth. However, it came just 25th for general life satisfaction.

The survey results showed that not one expat parent has something negative to say about children’s health, children’s safety, or children’s well-being in Finland and 70% said that the quality of education was excellent compared to a global average of just 21%.

The Czech Republic came in second after not featuring in the previous survey with parents praising the affordability of childcare and schooling, although there were comments on family friendliness being lower than other nations. The country was 36th with 13% rating it negative to at least some degree, compared to 7% globally.

Israel was ranked first for children’s health with 56% of expat parents saying it is very good. Families there are also made to feel welcome as 69% consider the attitude towards families with children to be excellent. The country is, however, regarded less favourably for children’s safety and family life in general, ranking 25th and 29th, respectively.

Austria fell from top place to fourth and Sweden was down from third to fifth place. Some parents mentioned Sweden’s falling school results and others said that family friendliness has gone downhill in Austria.

Other countries that did not do as well include Bahrain falling from eighth place to 22, Spain down from number 12 in the rankings to 26 and Denmark down from 11 to 23.

According to the survey report quality of life for families is pulling some countries up the rankings. For example, Belgium, Norway and South Korea all made significant leaps with Belgium making the most headway to ninth from 24th place the previous survey.

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