Assessing travel and visa obligations in Norway

When traveling to Norway, your nationality and the types of activities you will conduct during your trip will determine whether you may travel lawfully as a business visitor or if you require work authorization. Please seek advice from your immigration counsel if you are uncertain about the specific types of activities that constitute business or work.

Traveling for business

What types of activities may I engage in as a business visitor?

As a business visitor to Norway, you may engage in the activities below. While this list is not exhaustive and other activities could qualify as business, you may:

  • Attend business meetings and contract negotiations (i.e., planning, reporting, presenting, handover and discussing results and products at a general level related to a contract or a product).
  • Test related to product delivery (including acceptance testing of IT deliveries). This is usually deemed to be part of the handover of a product.


If I qualify as a business visitor, do I need a visa for Norway?

Nationals of Canada, the European Union, the United States, and many other select countries are eligible for a visa waiver and are not required to obtain a visa to enter and conduct business activities in Norway.

Norway is a member of the Schengen Area, a free-travel zone comprised of 29 European countries. If your nationality is not eligible for a visa waiver in the Schengen Area, you will be required to obtain a Schengen C Visa prior to travel. Visa-waivered nationals, as well as those who are required to obtain a visa, are authorized to travel to Norway and throughout the Schengen Area. Please note that travelers may not spend more than 90 days within any 180-day period inside the Schengen Area.

Working in Norway

What types of activities require a work permit?

Business visitors are generally prohibited from engaging in productive work activities that are an extension of professional activities, even if only conducted for a few days. Such activities include work relating to the realization of a contract, such as product development, attending workshops, and similar discussion forums (considered part of product development) where participants exchange knowledge and information as part of their everyday tasks in their home country. These activities require work authorization.

In most cases, a work permit is required for professional activities; however, a work permit exemption may apply to some specific activities provided that certain conditions are met. An individual assessment is required before deciding whether a work authorization exemption is appropriate.


If I am traveling to Norway for work, what type of work permit do I need?

The requirements for work authorization depend on your qualifications, on the nature and duration of your work, and on whether your employer has an entity in Norway. The most common forms of work authorization in Norway are:

  • Resident Permits for Skilled Workers (work authorization for high-skilled local hires).
  • Residence Permits for Skilled Workers (work authorization for high-skilled employed in an international company who intend to carry out an assignment for the Norwegian branch of the company, or if they are employed by a foreign company and providing a service for a Norwegian client).


Is it possible to be exempted from work permit requirements?

Nationals from the European Union, the European Economic Area and Switzerland are not required to obtain a work permit in order to work in Norway. However, registrations or other formalities may be required prior to working or residing in Norway.


What else should I know?

Inevitably, the legal and strategic considerations impacting visa selection, as well as visa waiver and work authorization eligibility, entail the careful consideration of many factors. We recommend that you consult with your immigration counsel before taking any course of action.


Copyright ©2024 Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP. Government immigration agencies often change their policies and practices without notice; please consult an immigration professional for up-to-date information. This document does not constitute legal advice or create an attorney-client relationship. BAL maintains comprehensive immigration information and processing specifics for our clients.