Norway becomes more costly for foreign travellers

 Monday, March 20, 2023 


The Norwegian kroner (NOK) is historically weak, which means that travelling in Norway has become far more affordable for most visitors.

Norway has long been perceived as a high cost country, but the truth is that Norway has been quietly becoming cheaper and cheaper for many travellers for years, even despite rising inflation. Especially for Americans – who get 36 percent more value for every dollar they spend than just five years ago, and quite close to double if you compare the rates to the last ten years.

Norway has also become more affordable for Scandinavian and British travellers in particular, and also for visitors from the Eurozone. In just the last year, the Euro and the dollar have gained about 15% and 18% respectively on the Norwegian krone (NOK).

The Danish krone (DKK) is up 15%, while the Swedish krona (SEK) is up 10%, and the pound is worth about 8% more in Norway now than it was at around this time in 2022.

NOK is historically weak

NOK hit a historical low against the dollar and the Euro in 2023, as well as many other currencies, making the country a less expensive destination. Danes now get NOK 150 NOK for every 100 Danish krone. That is quite a bargain!

Even lower exchange rates?

Prominent Norwegian financial newspaper Dagens Næringsliv quotes economists as saying that with the current global financial situation, the Norwegian krone might weaken even more in spring 2023, and that the Euro and dollar might see exchange rates of NOK 11.50 and NOK 11.15, respectively. But Norway is so expensive anyway, you might say. Yes, Norway is still a high cost country, and has also been hit by soaring inflation, higher energy prices, and financial unrest, like many other Western countries s a result of the war in Ukraine. But inflation has also been a bit lower than in many other countries, and energy remains quite inexpensive in several parts of the country.

Not the most expensive anymore

Norway does not top the list of the most expensive countries in Europe (that dubious honour goes Switzerland and Iceland in 2022, based on Mercer’s exhaustive 2022 cost of living index rankings). Moreover, Oslo is no longer on the top 20 list of the most expensive cities in the world, according to the annual Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) survey.

If you don’t drink a lot in bars and restaurants, and don’t smoke, consumer prices are not that different from what you find in many Western European countries and big cities these days. Meat and diary products might be a bit more expensive, though, but if you look at animal welfare, and care about the environment, you may fell that the extra kroner spent are worth it.

And the most important reason for many travellers to visit Norway is totally free: nature! Learn the secret of Friluftsliv, enjoying the great outdoors, and why it is so good for your health, too!

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