SHARE
COPY LINK
For members

WHAT CHANGES IN NORWAY

What changes about life in Norway in 2022? 

The new year will bring about a series of changes for everyone living in Norway. Here's a roundup of the big ones to look out for throughout the year. 

Pictured is a Norwegian flag at sundown.
Taxes, childcare costs and the requirements for Norwegian citizenship will be among the things changing in 2022. Pictured is the Norwegian flag atop a mountain. Photo by Mikita Karasiou on Unsplash

Brexit

This one has already affected Brits looking to move to Norway this year, but from the beginning of next year changes will directly impact everyone who was living in the Nordic country before December 31st 2020 and doesn’t apply for residence under the Separation Agreement by the end of 2021. 

If they miss this deadline, they will have to apply as a third-party national, which means more boxes need to be ticked to obtain residency, such as a minimum income in some cases and a costly application fee. 

READ MORE: How Brits can get a residence permit in Norway post-Brexit

Citizenship rules change

From spring 2022, better Norwegian language skills will be required to obtain citizenship. The change is expected to come into force during the spring at the earliest. 

The requirement for Norwegian verbal skills will be raised from A2 to B1 to obtain citizenship. The Common European Framework of Reference for Languages considers B1 to be semi-fluent. 

Additionally, it will no longer be compulsory to undertake Norwegian language training or take classes on Norwegian culture and society to be granted citizenship.

Tax changes 

Those who earn less than 750,000 kroner will pay less in taxes, and those that make more will be subject to higher taxes. Additionally, the wealth tax is being increased from 0.85 to 0.95 percent of net worth. Those with assets of more than 20 million kroner (40 million kroner for married couples) will pay a higher rate of 1.1 percent. 

People who are members of a trade union will receive a tax deduction of 5,800 kroner. The CO2 tax will also be increased, but road and motor insurance tax will be slashed. The electricity tax will also see a slight decrease of 8 øre per kilowatt-hour during the winter and 1.5 øre during the rest of the year. 

READ ALSO: How will the 2022 budget change life in Norway?

Duty-free rules change

The duty-free quota rules will be changed from January 1st, meaning it will no longer be possible to replace the tobacco quota with 1.5 litres of wine or beer. This will come as somewhat of a blow to those who don’t smoke but like to grab a discount at duty-free. 

Tobacco will become more expensive 

The Tobacco tax will increase by five percent above the regular price adjustment. For example, the tax on a pack of twenty cigarettes will increase to 59 kroner. 

Government to pick up half the electricity bill during the winter

The government will cover 55 percent of the bill on energy prices above a monthly average of 70 øre per kilowatt-hour. The deduction will appear on your bill and will be calculated automatically. 

The scheme will apply from December until March 2022. The deductions will appear on the bill for December, which will arrive in the new year. 

Tax returns

On April 4th, all personal tax returns will be sent to residents of Norway, which they can either fill out on paper or do online. 

April 30th will see the deadline to submit tax returns or extend the submission date. People who are self-employed will have until May 31st to fill out their tax return. 

Houses can no longer be sold “as is” 

You can no longer sell a house “as is” in regards to its condition. 

The new rules mean that sellers will need to take greater responsibility in providing thorough information about the condition of the house to prospective buyers. There will also be a greater expectation on house hunters to familiarise themselves with the information on the homes condition. 

New minimum requirements for reports on the homes condition will also be introduced. 

New national museum opens its doors

Norway’s new national museum will open in June 2022. The opening has been postponed several times already, with the museum initially scheduled to be ready for the autumn of 2020. 

The museum will be the largest of its kind in the Nordic region and will house more than 100,000 works over 55,000 square meters. 

Everyone over 18 offered a Covid-19 booster dose by February 

The Norwegian government has set itself the target of offering everyone over the age of 18 a booster vaccine by the end of February 2022. 

The government has also said that it should be on track to offer everyone over 45 a booster dose by mid-January. 

New travel options become available

Several new travel options should become available in Norway in 2022. 

From May, United Airlines will begin flying a new route that will take passengers from Bergen to Newark, New Jersey, in America three times a week. 

Norse Airlines is also expected to begin operating out of Oslo in 2022. The airline will fly out of Oslo to New York, Miami and Los Angeles. The market newcomer will focus on long-haul flights and may later expand to operating out of other European destinations. 

Interest rates to continue going up

Loan and mortgage repayments will continue to get more expensive throughout 2022 as Norway’s central bank, Norges Bank, continues to raise the policy rate above historically low levels. 

In 2021 the rate was raised from zero to 0.5 percent as part of Norges Banks plan to bring the policy rate to 1.75 percent by 2024. 

READ ALSO: How could rising interest rates affect Norway’s economy?

Childcare to become cheaper

The maximum price parents can be charged for a kindergarten place will be reduced from 3,315 kroner per month to 3,050 kroner per month. This will take effect from the New Year. 

All first-grade children will also have access to a half-day place at an after-school activity. 

The cost of fuel will go up considerably due to hiked taxes on petrol and diesel. Petrol tax is set to rise to 1.60 kroner per litre, and diesel tax will increase to 1.87 kroner per litre. As with taxes and childcare this change will be effective from January 1st. Petrol to cost more

Change to the pension rules

Everyone over 18 will begin contributing to their pension from the first krone they earn as part of the compulsory occupational pension scheme from January 1st. 

Previously, contributions were required for earnings of 106,000 kroner and above. According to the government, the new rule will allow one million more Norwegians and 160,000 young people to contribute to the occupational pension. 

Fløibannen reopens

One of Bergen’s biggest tourist attractions, the Fløbannen cable railway, will reopen in Spring 2022. The cable railway closed in September 2021 for six months for extensive refurbishments. 

The railway will reopen in April 2022. The renovations include improved access for wheelchairs or prams. 

Member comments

Log in here to leave a comment.
Become a Member to leave a comment.
For members

WHAT CHANGES IN NORWAY

What changes about life in Norway in February 2022

Here are the main changes and events in Norway in February that you need to know about.

What changes about life in Norway in February 2022
What changes about life in Norway in February 2022. Oliver Morin/AFP

Covid rules to be relaxed?

The government has stated that it plans on relaxing national measures to protect the public from Covid-19 despite the growing number of infection cases. The newest national update is expected, but not confirmed, to happen Tuesday evening, February 1st. 

Recently, many national regulations have changed to recommendations including:

  • It is recommended to not have more than ten guests at a private party.
  • Sports and free time activities can continue with proper precautions in place.
  • Universities and higher education institutions should take measures to ensure more in-person learning.

In addition, quarantine rules have recently been relaxed. You can check here to for the latest guidelines on what to do if you have been in contact with someone who has tested positive. 

International travel in February 

The national rules may be relaxing. But if you plan on traveling from the first of February, take the necessary time needed to read up on the newest international travel rules. You should also check how long your corona pass is valid for your final destination.

From February 1st – When 270 days (just over nine months) have passed since dose two, the Norwegian Institute of Public Health (FHI) warns that some countries may require a booster dose.

You can check here for more international travel regulations for traveling both in and out of Norway. 

Oslo’s night time metro closures

Parts of Oslo’s T-bane metro system will close during the evening for five days a week throughout much of February and March.

From Sunday, February 6th, metro traffic at some of Oslo’s busiest stations will stop during the evening for around seven weeks, newspaper Aftenposten reports.

The disruption will be split into two periods. The first round of night closures will begin on February 6th, when all metro traffic between Majorstuen and Stortinget (Norway’s parliament) will stop after 9pm.

The second round of disruption will last for more than four weeks, from February 27th until March 24th. During this second period of evening closures, trains will no longer run between Jernbanetorget and Brynseng after 9pm. This will apply to lines 1,2, 3 and 4. In addition, Tøyen, Ensjø and Helsfyr will also be closed when traveling on the affected lines.

On the days that nighttime closures apply, alternative transport will be arranged by having more trams. 

READ MORE: What you need to know about Oslo’s nighttime metro closures in February

School holiday 

February is the month when many Norwegians choose to take a week free from work. This is because of school closures most commonly referred to as winter break. While all other holidays happen on the same date throughout all of Norway, winter break is special in that the days free from school happen on different weeks depending on where in the country you live. 

A good part of Norwegians schools close for vinterferie or “winter break” on week 8 (the 21st to the 25th of February) on the eastern and southern parts of Norway. Up north, schools are closed the week before on week 7 (14th to 18th). And over on the west side in Bergen and its surrounding municipalities, winter break happens during week 9 (Feb 28th – Mar 4th). 

Pre-pandemic, many Norwegians chose to travel abroad during this week. Although a good portion of them spend it  at their cabins or up in the mountains. One of the main reasons this school holiday is taken on different weeks is in an effort to reduce heavy traffic on mountain roads. Surely the deviation helps. Yet still,  you can expect traffic and a rise in accommodation prices in and surrounding popular winter break destinations throughout February.

A damper for the romantics

Valentine’s day (February 14th) lands on a Friday this year.

Traditionally, this is a recognized as a day of love, romance, and sweet gestures. But don’t feel bad if you don’t come home with flowers and chocolates to your loved one in Norway.

Yes, Valentine’s day is acknowledged in this country but really, there is no pressure for grand gestures of kjærlighet or “love” as Valentine’s day is like most others. You may however see some red hearts or banners placed in boutique windows. And you may find it more difficult to get reservations and certain restaurants. 

February is not without a celebration in Norway

If you have younger children, then it’s time to to start thinking about a costume. Norway has its very own tradition of the popular festival Carnival which is called Fastelavn.

Children in preschool usually dress up in costumes of their choice and have a Fastelavn party at their school. The celebration has Roman Catholic origins. But in modern day, many Norwegians choose to celebrate Fastelavn as a celebration for the soon arrival of Spring. 

This year, Fastelavn lands on Sunday, February 27th. Meaning children will likely dress up in school the Friday before or Monday after. Adults don’t usually dress up.

But they do wear looser fitting pants in preparation for Fastelavnsboller, This is a special type of bolle (an airy pastry) that is cut into two, filled with cream and jam, and then powdered with sugar on top. It’s a sugar lover’s dream! And even the healthiest of Norwegians will often make an exception and enjoy.

SHOW COMMENTS