Are you a dentist dreaming of working in the breathtaking landscapes of Iceland? Well, you’re not alone! Iceland’s beauty attracts not only tourists but also professionals seeking new opportunities. In this guide, we’ll break down the steps to help you work and immigrate to Iceland as a dentist. It’s an adventure waiting to happen!

How to Work as a Dentist in Iceland?

To immigrate to Iceland as a dentist and work there, you must follow the following steps:

  1. Qualification Recognition
  2. Language Proficiency
  3. Work Permit Application
  4. Job Search
  5. Professional Registration
  6. Residence Permit
  7. Liability Insurance
  8. Relocation
  9. Professional Development Compliance
How to Work and Immigrate to Iceland as a Dentist

Step 1. Qualification Recognition

Dental qualifications from EU/EEA countries are generally recognized in Iceland under the Professional Qualifications Directive. A degree equivalent to an Icelandic dental degree is needed for non-EU dentists. Applicants must submit their credentials to the Directorate of Health in Iceland for assessment. Requirements include a diploma, professional experience, and sometimes additional exams. Non-EU applicants may face more stringent scrutiny and might need to pass a language and professional knowledge test.

Step 2. Language Proficiency

Proficiency in Icelandic is crucial for healthcare professionals in Iceland. The required proficiency level is usually B2 or above. Institutes like the University of Iceland and the Reykjavik School of Languages offer Icelandic courses. Online platforms and language apps also provide resources for learning Icelandic.

Step 3. Work Permit Application

EU/EEA citizens are not required to have a work permit but must register their right of residence. Non-EU citizens need to apply for a work permit through the Directorate of Immigration. The application includes:

  • Personal details
  • Proof of professional qualifications
  • A job contract from an Icelandic employer
  • Sometimes, a health certificate

The process can vary in duration and difficulty based on the applicant’s nationality.

Step 4. Job Search

Job opportunities can be found on websites like EURES (European Employment Services) and Starfatorg (a local job portal) and through recruitment agencies specializing in healthcare professionals. Networking with Icelandic dental associations and attending job fairs are also effective strategies.

Step 5. Professional Registration

After getting their qualifications recognized, dentists must register with the Icelandic Dental Association. This involves submitting your recognized qualifications, proof of identity, and possibly additional documentation,, depending on the applicant’s country of origin.  Additional documentation may include detailed records of your educational history, professional certifications, and any relevant licenses or permits.

Step 6. Residence Permit

A residence permit is needed for non-EU citizens to live and work in Iceland. The application, submitted to the Directorate of Immigration, requires a valid passport, proof of employment in Iceland, sufficient financial means, a criminal record check, and health insurance. The process involves an application fee and can take several months.

Step 7. Liability Insurance

Professional liability insurance is mandatory for practicing dentists in Iceland. It protects against claims of malpractice or negligence. Insurance can be obtained through Icelandic insurance companies or international insurers that offer coverage in Iceland.

One well-regarded insurance company in Iceland that offers professional liability insurance, including for healthcare professionals like dentists, is TM Insurance (Tryggingamiðstöðin). TM Insurance provides a range of insurance products and is considered reliable in the Icelandic insurance market.

Step 8. Relocation

Reykjavik is the most popular city when relocating to Iceland due to more job opportunities and amenities, and you can relocate with your work permit in hand. Akureyri and Hafnarfjörður are also good options. Relocation involves finding accommodation, understanding tax regulations, and possibly shipping personal belongings. Integration into the community and understanding local customs and laws are also important.

Step 9. Professional Development Compliance

Continuous professional development is required to maintain registration with the Icelandic Dental Association. This can include attending seminars, workshops, conferences, and completing online courses relevant to dentistry. Keeping abreast of the latest advancements in dental science and technology is also part of professional development.

Are Dentists in Demand in Iceland?

Yes. Dentists are moderately in demand in Iceland, particularly in rural areas and smaller towns. The country’s healthcare system often faces shortages in specialized medical professionals, including dentists, creating opportunities for practitioners, especially those willing to work outside of the capital region, Reykjavik.

How Much Does a Dentist Make in Iceland?

Dentists in Iceland typically earn between ISK 1,000,000 to ISK 1,500,000 per month. This range can vary based on components such as location, experience, specialization, and whether they work in public healthcare or private practice. Dentists in private practices or with specializations generally have the potential for higher earnings.

What Are Some Job Opportunities for a Dentist in Iceland?

In Iceland, dentists can find job opportunities in various settings, including public health clinics, private dental practices, and hospitals. There are also roles in academic and research institutions. Additionally, with the growing focus on specialized dental care, opportunities in areas like orthodontics, pediatric dentistry, and cosmetic dentistry are increasing. Remote and rural areas mainly offer more opportunities due to lesser competition.

How to Become a Dentist in Iceland?

There are a few steps you need to follow when you decide to Immigrate to Iceland as a dentist and study there. Below, you can find them in details;

  1. Obtain a Bachelor’s Degree
  2. Enroll In Dental School
  3. Apply For Student Visa (Non-EU Students)
  4. Complete Dental Program
  5. Finish Clinical Training/Internship
  6. Pass the National Dental Exam
  7. Recognize Degree
  8. Learn Icelandic
  9. Register With the Dental Association
  10. Get a Work/Residence Permit
  11. Start Dental Practice

Step 1. Obtain a Bachelor’s Degree

A Bachelor’s degree in a related field (like health sciences) strengthens the application for dental school. Requirements are different by institution but typically include a high school diploma, science courses, and entrance exams.

Step 2. Enroll In Dental School

Admission requires a high school diploma, science subjects, entrance exams, and sometimes interviews. EU/EEA students often choose schools in Iceland or the EU/EEA. Non-EU students can consider internationally recognized institutions like Karolinska Institute (Sweden), the University of Helsinki (Finland), and the University of Copenhagen (Denmark). The process involves submitting an application, transcripts, test scores, and recommendations.

Step 3. Apply For Student Visa (Non-EU Students)

The next step in your path to immigrate to Iceland as a dentist and study there would be to apply at the Icelandic embassy or consulate. Necessary documents include a valid passport, admission letter from the dental school, proof of financial support, and health insurance. The process involves an application fee and an interview. You can read about the student visa process in Visa Library.

Step 4. Complete Dental Program

Dental programs in Iceland typically last 5-6 years, combining theoretical studies and practical training. Requirements include successful completion of all coursework and clinical rotations.

Step 5. Finish Clinical Training/Internship

This is part of the dental program, often in the final years. Students work under supervision in clinics or hospitals, gaining hands-on experience. Some programs may have specific requirements for the type and duration of internships.

Step 6. Pass the National Dental Exam

Administered by the Iceland Directorate of Health or a similar organization, this exam tests theoretical and practical knowledge. It’s considered challenging and requires thorough preparation. Passing is mandatory for practice in Iceland.

Step 7. Recognize Degree

Apply to the Directorate of Health in Iceland for recognition of your dental degree. The process includes submitting academic transcripts, proof of clinical training, and sometimes passing additional tests.

Step 8. Learn the Icelandic Language

Achieving a B2 level in Icelandic is essential for communication with patients. Language courses are available at universities or language institutes in Iceland and online. The minimum requirement in your Icelandic Language Proffesioncy would be B2.

Step 9. Register With the Dental Association

The Icelandic Dental Association requires an application that includes your dental degree, proof of passing the national exam, and personal identification. Registration is mandatory for legal practice.

Step 10. Get a Work/Residence Permit

Apply through the Directorate of Immigration. Documents needed include a valid passport, job contract (from a dental clinic or hospital in Iceland), financial proof, and health insurance. The process consists of an application fee and can take several months.

Step 11. Start Dental Practice

Opportunities exist in public clinics, private practices, and hospitals. Reykjavik offers more opportunities, but rural areas may have higher demand. Standard working hours vary, with private practices often offering more flexibility. Networking and job portals can aid in job searching.

Can I Study Dentistry in English in Iceland?

Yes, you can study dentistry in English in Iceland. Some dental schools in Iceland offer programs in English, making it accessible to international students. It’s essential to check with specific institutions for their language of instruction and admission requirements, as they may vary. Learning Icelandic to communicate with patients is critical, but the academic component can often be completed in English.

How Much Does it Cost to Study Dentistry in Iceland?

The cost of studying dentistry in Iceland varies depending on the institution and your nationality. For EU/EEA students, education is typically free or low-cost. Non-EU/EEA students may have higher tuition fees ranging from approximately ISK 400,000 to ISK 1,500,000 per year. Additionally, living expenses in Iceland can be significant, so it’s essential to consider those costs before packing to immigrate to Iceland as a Dentist.

How Long Does it Take to Complete a Dental Program in Iceland?

In Iceland, it typically takes about 5 to 6 years to complete a dental program. This program includes a combination of theoretical coursework and practical clinical training. The time span may vary slightly depending on the specific dental school and its curriculum. Upon successful completion, graduates are eligible to practice dentistry in Iceland and can pursue further specialization if desired.

Immigrate to Iceland as a Dentist: Let’s Recap!

In conclusion, considering moving to Iceland to start your career or academic life can be really exciting; it’s an adventure waiting to happen in one of the world’s most stunning landscapes. From qualification recognition to mastering the Icelandic language and navigating the immigration process, this guide has outlined the steps to make your dream a reality. With dedication and preparation, you can become part of Iceland’s healthcare community and experience its unique charm while providing essential dental care. Your Icelandic odyssey awaits!


Can foreign dentists work in Iceland?

Yes, they can. But they need to have specific qualifications. Reread the article, and you will have your concerns solved.

Can you get a job in Iceland only speaking English?

While some jobs can be found in Iceland by speaking English, learning Icelandic is essential, especially for healthcare professionals.

How can I legally immigrate to Iceland as a dentist?

To legally immigrate to Iceland as a dentist, follow the steps outlined in the previous responses.

How can a foreigner get a job as a dentist in Iceland?

Foreigners can get a job as a dentist in Iceland by meeting qualification and language requirements and securing a work permit.

Is it difficult to immigrate to Iceland as a dentist?

Immigration difficulty varies, but thorough preparation can streamline the process.

Can Indian dentists work in Iceland?

Yes, Indian dentists can work in Iceland, subject to qualification recognition and other requirements.

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