Preparing to relocate to Denmark and AU

Moving to a new country raises a lot of questions and requires various preparations. Below you can read more about the different areas we recommend that you look into before your arrival to Denmark.

Housing search

The rental market can be quite competitive. Therefore, we recommend that you acquaint yourself with the rental market and that you start looking for accommodation in due time (minimum 2-3 months) before your arrival to Denmark.

Information about housing options:

Permissions to reside and work in Denmark

Permissions to reside and work in Denmark depend on your nationality. If you are a non-EU/EEA citizen you need a work and residence permit to work in Denmark. You need to apply for the work and residence permit before you come to Denmark. 

Spouses, registered partners or cohabiting partners, as well as any children under the age of 18 who are living at home, to a person granted a residence and work permit as a researcher, guest researcher, PhD student or guest PhD student are eligible for Danish residence permits.

Read more about permissions to reside and work in Denmark

Documents to bring

There are a number of documents you need to bring to get registered in Denmark. If you are married or bringing family, you need to bring documentation from your home country in officially translated copies (German, English or Scandinavian languages): 

  • Marriage certificate (if you are married). Please remember to bring your marriage certificate, even if your partner is not accompanying you to Denmark. 
  • If applicable: divorce certificate/death certificate (widow(er)) 
  • If applicable, documentation for changes of name 

NB: Only certificates in English/German/Scandinavian languages are accepted (original or authorized translations). Please note that marriage certificates from some countries need to be apostille certified. 

US citizens only

  • Social security card (a requirement by FATCA to open a Danish bank account)

Bank account

Opening a bank account in Denmark is fairly straight forward, although you will need to bring along the required documents. To open a bank account in Denmark, you need a CPR number, which is issued once you have become a resident. Therefore, you cannot open an account as a non-resident. Normally it takes around a week to become a resident.

Banks are required to do a lot of safety checks to avoid fraud. This means that opening an account can take up to 3-4 weeks. Therefore, you should make sure that you can support yourself financially for the first month of your stay.

Read more about the process to open a bank account

Pension schemes

International academic staff members have 3 different options of pension scheme:

  • Ordinary Pension Contributions Scheme - option for all international staff members employed according to the collective agreement for academics 
  • International Pension Scheme according to Section 53 A of the Pension Taxation Act - option for some academic staff members employed in accordance with the collective agreement for academics
  • Pension Exemption (pension contribution paid out as salary) for a period of maximum 5 years - option for some international researchers employed by the university on a fixed term contract

You need to decide which scheme you wish to be on before starting your work at Aarhus University.

Your pension fund can answer questions about the different schemes.  

Read more about pension on the HR Portal

Tax schemes

Before you relocate, you should consider your tax situation in Denmark. Your tax liability depends on a number of circumstances such as your position at Aarhus University, how long you will stay in Denmark, whether you will be employed or not and whether you will be a resident in Denmark or not. Read more about tax liability

Researcher taxation scheme

International researchers or highly paid employees under certain conditions may be eligible for the special tax scheme for foreign researchers or highly paid employees. On this scheme, you will only pay a gross income tax of 27 percent (excl. the job market contribution) for up to 84 months (7 years) instead of the standard income tax.  

PhD students cannot be on the researcher taxation scheme. 

Please note that you need to decide whether you wish to be on the scheme before you formally move to Denmark.

Please inform the HR partner responsible for your employment contract whether you wish to be on the researcher taxation scheme or not. They will normally contact you regarding your choice of tax schemes in advance of your employment. 

Read more about the researcher taxation scheme on the HR Portal


Everyone residing in Denmark for more than three months has the right to receive national health service treatment for free. This means that as soon as you are a registered resident here and have a CPR (civil registration) number, you have the same rights to medical assistance as Danish citizens. 

Before coming to Denmark we advise you to make sure that you are coverd by private healthcare until you get registered in Denmark. EU citizens should bring their blue EU health insurance card. We also advise you to bring your medical and dental records. 

Read more about healthcare 


When you work at Aarhus University you will be covered by workers' compensation insurance during your work time. However, it is your own responsibility to sign insurances to cover you during your free time. Some insurances are optional others mandatory. 

Please note that you cannot take out Danish insurance before you are a registered resident and have a CPR (civil registration) number. You should make sure that you are covered by private insurance, eg. a travel insurance, until you get registered in Denmark. 

Read more about insurance under on arrival

Import of goods and pets

Read about the taxation and custom rules for importing goods and the rules and requirements if you wish to bring animal products or a pet with you to Denmark under Import of goods and pets

Moving your personal belongings

Custom regulations 

If you move to Denmark, get married or acquire personal belongings by inheritance, your personal belongings may be introduced duty-free. You are not liable to pay VAT if you meet the conditions that apply.

Read more about custom regulations on the Danish taxation authorities (SKAT) website 

Moving companies

Travelling to Aarhus

Aarhus University has made an overview of different travel options when travelling to Aarhus.  

See the Getting to Aarhus and Aarhus University page

Accompanying family members


If you bring children with you to Denmark, we will be happy to assist you with information and guidance about childcare options, school enrolment, language tuition etc.

Read more under Children

Accompanying partner

The Expat Partner Programme (EPP) assists accompanying partners with all aspects of the transition to a new life and career in Denmark from the moment your partner or spouse has been recruited. 

The Expat Partner Programme (EPP) is for international partners to academic staff at AU from postdoc level and above.

Read more about the Expat Partner Programme

Learning Danish

CLAVIS and A2B provide pre-arrival Danish courses or online platforms for future international staff and accompanying partners.

Pre-arrvial online Danish courses with CLAVIS

CLAVIS provides an 8-week online course for new international employees and accompanying partners at Aarhus University. The course gives you the opportunity to kick-start and train your Danish before arrival and get the best possible start in Denmark.

For more information and signing up please contact: 

IT Pedagogical Department Manager, Jeppe Vetterli Sjøgren at

Pre-arrival online Danish

Pre-arrival Danish digital learning platform with A2B

A2B Online Danish is first and foremost intended as a digital learning platform, where you will receive online language teaching with various interactive assignments, video and sound clips as well as self-directed assignments before arriving to Denmark. In addition, you will gain access to practical and general knowledge about Danish society and Danish Culture.

Contact A2B for further information about the online Danish platform:

Further information

For further information about Danish courses at Aarhus University for AU staff and accompanying partners, feel free to contact Anne P. Langer:

Read more about Danish courses at Aarhus University