World’s happiest countries

World’s 20 happiest countries in 2024

  1. Finland

  2. Denmark

  3. Iceland

  4. Sweden

  5. Israel

  6. Netherlands

  7. Norway

  8. Luxembourg

  9. Switzerland

  10. Australia

  11. New Zealand

  12. Costa Rica

  13. Kuwait

  14. Austria

  15. Canada

  16. Belgium

  17. Ireland

  18. Czechia

  19. Lithuania

  20. United Kingdom

The United States (No. 23) and Germany (No. 24) dropped out of the top 20 in part because of a rise in happiness among other countries — especially Czechia (No. 18), Lithuania (No. 19) and Slovenia (No. 21).

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Top 4 is all nordic countries, and the 5 nordic countries are in the top 7.

They may have shitty weather but they have have done something right, that’s for sure. I wished Switzerland was a bit more like them in some aspects.


Finland’s higher suicide rate arguably helps in weeding out the unhappy.


Which aspects would that be for you?
Personally I love how they handle parenthood with long maternity/paternity leaves and their KiTa’s etc.


Hmm, I guess France and Italy have never been in top 20?

Oil and massive wealth amassed by vikings and their descendants (Danegeld, Sound Dues, Swedish Empire) definitely help. Not in case of Finland, though, who were dirt poor to start from and ended up paying reparations to Soviet Union :thinking:. Oh well, all a Finn needs to be happy is a sauna by a lake, and they have plenty of both.


Basically that. And also a better work/life balance but that’s not unique to Nordic countries. I just think they got their social services right. Yes they have higher taxes but most people are happy to pay them because they recognize their value.

True but Finland is #1 and like you said they don’t have that. Norway is the biggest example of that and is the worst of the Nordic countries. So maybe that doesn’t play as big of a role. Also Switzerland has some unique advantages…

Iirc their high suicide rate is in part because they have it so good. It’s a bit counter intuitive but I believe that they have quite a high young suicide rate because lots of youngsters feel lost and without purpose because they don’t really struggle for anything. The darkness certainly doesn’t help :sweat_smile:

I would be miserable every Fall/Winter with this little sunlight. It‘s already challenging enough here :sweat_smile:


I always have a laugh when I see the results of this “world’s happiest countries” report. I’m sure they base their study on some theory, but that theory has no correlation whatsoever with my personal experience. The excessive overweighting of western countries is also somewhat curious. Trying to measure happiness is a pretty abstract notion. Personally, I think a ranking of purchasing power would have more to say about “happiness” in the sense of the ability to do things that one wants to do. A ranking of personal freedoms, from a legal standpoint, would also be interesting in that regard.


It‘s based on a survey, for better or worse:

The report draws on global survey data from people in more than 140 countries. Countries are ranked on happiness based on their average life evaluations over the three preceding years, in this case 2021 to 2023.

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Once you figure out that happness is not about buying things, you can start to get more happy already.
Money helps to achieve things and make your life sometimes easier/less stressful but if you are poor and misrable, getting rich suddently will not make you less miserable, you must also change your mentality. But if you do it you might figure out you don’t even need so êucj money or purchasing power to be as much happy as you would like.

Not saying it’s easy, not saying anyone can achieve than, not even saying I did, fare from it, but I now understand that it’s achievable with the right effort.

I guess more people figured it out in these countries than in others.

Then you still have countries with bad politics, bad life conditions and poor security, which make it worst of course.

The kind of ranking that makes everyone depressive, Finnish included.

I couldn’t agree more…which makes it all the more questionable that the “happiest” countries all have extremely high consumption rates. Of course, survey’s are always extremely subjective, and are best taken with a pinch…no, a tablespoon of salt.

If I am not mistaken this kind of rankings always wight a lot:

  1. economic freedom (economic and saving capacity)
  2. opinion freedom
  3. health

and affect negatively:

  1. pollution
  2. wars
  3. lack of social benefits, specially on patternity, health…

To me it’s quite biased, because many countries have maybe less physical health, however a extense social or family network helps a lot with mental health and therefore “hapiness”. Othercountries might have much more struggles on mental health (which common cause is actually lack of social network, aside of the weather), but it is not measured because there are difficulties on comparing countries on this metric. In this regard, the north-european countries are always scoring high marks, but then you talk to anyone that lived in the south of europe and will tell you there were more happy there (but probably, poorer too). So what is happiness exactly?

Counter point you don’t talk to Finnish people because they are happy being alone in their forests and saunas.

Having lived there for a few months (while studying) I can definitely see the appeal and while them being the happiest country on earth is of course partly due to the metrics used you can’t deny that they live a good life. Yes the weather is harsh af in the winter (but alo super nice in the summer), however just being in a safe place both in terms of crime and socially/financially is extremely good.

I assume that these studies take into account the median person or at least some band around it. Of course you can go to Italy, Portugal or Spain and have great weather and food, friendly people and have a great life but for the average person living there, the cost comes with a lot of problems, from low salaries, decaying health systems, high corruption, crime, poor work-life balance, and low purchasing power or simply being being to close to poverty.

If you don’t have money issues then having more money won’t make you (much more) happy, but if you do, then not having money certainly makes you miserable. Even if you essentially end up making the same decisions/actions you do with (much more) freedom and that’s invaluable.

As a FIre forum the benefits to that should be rather clear to everyone.


Counter point you don’t talk to Finnish people because they are happy being alone in their forests and saunas.

Actually I do not know many Finish! But i bet you can have a good life there, it seems a great country.
Counterargument is that their suicide rate (2020) is pretty high, so for me is an indicator they share mental health struggles with other scandinavian countries.

low salaries, decaying health systems, high corruption, crime, poor work-life balance, and low purchasing power or simply being being to close to poverty.

geez, this sounds so bat if we are talking about ES, PT, IT. there is also middle and upper middle class there.
Anyway, what I meant to say is, money, safety, health are VERY important parameters for hapiness. You can not be happy if you can’t cover basic needs. this is true in any country.
However, the point that I want to make is that some societies favour strong social bonds and social interactions which make people happy. This is a noticeable difference for many people when moving from the south to north because of lack of connections, which in turn makes people unhappy. This is a factor that is very underplayed in these rankings and should be consider, because humans are social anymals, and a lack of family support, friends or just human connection has a big impact in many aspects of life. Then also mental health is not considered (which they could track with suicides). But obviously is not the only factor that influences happines, but I think the others are already considered.

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I think you have all missed the main reason why people are happier in Nordic countries:


Exactly…and Black Metal from Norway is the best :grin: