Dutch people are the 5th happiest in the world

Dutch people are the 5th happiest in the world

The Netherlands has climbed one place in the United Nations World Happiness Report to overtake Switzerland. Our lovely land of windmills and tulips now ranks 5th in the world for happiness.

United Nations World Happiness Report

Every year, the United Nations conducts a survey of the state of world happiness, in which 156 countries are ranked according to how happy their citizens perceive themselves to be.

While the report considers six factors (GDP, social support, life expectancy, freedom, generosity & corruption) to explain variations, each country’s score is based solely on individuals’ own assessments of their lives - and the Dutch seem to be pretty satisfied with their lot. In fact, this is the happiest we’ve ever been! (Probably because they don't include weather in the rankings...)

The top 10 happiest countries in 2019

The top spots on the ranking are largely taken by Scandinavian countries: for the second year in a row, Finland ranked as the happiest country in the world. While both Norway and Denmark increased their scores from previous years, Denmark showed a more marked improvement and therefore took second place, with Norway sliding into third.  

European nations featured prominently, with only two non-European countries - New Zealand and Canada - making it to the top 10. They took eighth and ninth place, respectively. The bottom-ranked countries were South Sudan, the Central African Republic and Afghanistan.  

The top placed countries were as follows:

  1. Finland
  2.  Denmark
  3. Norway
  4. Iceland
  5. Netherlands
  6. Switzerland
  7. Sweden
  8. New Zealand
  9. Canada
  10. Austria

How is the World Happiness Ranking decided?

The video below provides an overview of how the happiness ranking is calculated. You can also read a detailed description, along with the full report, on the World Happiness Report website.

Abi Carter


Abi Carter

Abi studied History & German at the University of Manchester. She has since worked as a writer, editor and content marketeer, but still has a soft spot for museums, castles...

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Don Dracoss 21:36 | 25 November 2019

The Netherlands one of the happiest countries I don't think so. Let me tell you about the problems we have as I life for more than 38 years in the Netherlands. First, we have a shortage in affordable houses for single middle-class persons. In Amsterdam the cheapest houses you can buy are around 200.000 euro's this is not affordable for a single middle classes person they don't earn enough for this. Renting is also a problem because social housing has a waiting list for more than 15 years. Private housing has a rent of 1000 euro's each month this is only rent no gas, water and electricity if you add this up it means that you must pay more than half your salary for this. Second social health care. Each year they increase the prices for this. I myself pay around 140 euros per month premium and I have an own risk of 250 euro's this mean that if the price goes above 250 euro's I must pay this extra amount. Medicine shortage because the pharmacy sells the A class medicines to other countries that bid higher. People here get the B class medicines which gives lots of problems. Third Pension. People that get pension here will get less each year. The reason for this is that pension companies use the money they get from the people in investment funds to earn more but this didn't go well and instead of winning they lost a lot that is why people that get pension will get less and less each year. The government tell us it's because we have a lot of people that are older compared to younger people this is only partial the truth. Fourth teacher shortage. We don't have enough teachers for the schools here. The teachers that are here strike a lot because of the work pressure they have and the low salary they earn. Fifth Retirement homes. We don't have enough of these too so old people have to stay at home longer in houses that aren't fit for this. Because we also have a shortage of nursing staff the family must take care of the parents this is very hard if you have a full-time job and many people get a burnout of this. These are a few problems we have. Organization is something that my country doesn't know every year in winter we have problems with the trains because the tracks are frozen, and they cannot ride. I think by myself why has Sweden never have these problems because they organize things better then in my country. We also bought a few F-35 fighter jets. I think for what my country is too small to attack, no it's to please the other countries look, look the Netherlands will help you. The government is the butt kisser of the European Union and we the people are the victim of the tax increases that we pay to increase the government fund.