I don’t know how anyone immigrates anywhere without some serious organization, as well as a stable government that has documents readily available. Not to mention parents who are supportive and also keep good records.

The process isn’t particularly interesting. To immigrate to Norway, you have to go www.udi.no/en and take care of business. Norway’s immigration site is actually pretty informative, though by the end of the exploration you’ll have approximately 25 tabs open in your web browser with no real idea of what any of it means. You just pick a type of residence application that you feel applies to you and get started!

I filled out the kind called “skilled worker with a visa-free citizenship.” One thing you learn really quickly is that Americans get to travel in and out of Norway (and the entire Schengen area, which I didn’t know was a thing until I started this process) without having an extra visa permission called an ESTA. My fiance had to fill out an ESTA and have it approved before he came to visit me in the United States, or they wouldn’t have let him in.

Another thing you learn really early is that you can only be in the Schengen area for 90 days a year. If you get a residence permit, those 90 days get folded into your resident deadline. You don’t get to stay 90 days and then get an extra six months to hang out once your residence permit is granted.

There are about a million other details that I could go into about Norway and immigration, but the sticking point is this: do your homework. Read everything. Then read everything again. Then again. Then, you may be ready to fill out an application to immigrate.

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