Top 20 world's happiest countries revealed - where does the UK rank? 

The report was published on the United Nations International Day of Happiness March 20.

Finland has once again been ranked as the world’s happiest country.

Over 140 countries have been surveyed on their happiness based on average life evaluations over the three preceding years, in this case 2021 to 2023.

The report – published on the United Nations International Day of Happiness March 20 – asks each participant to score their life as a whole, looking at six key variables to help explain life evaluations: GDP per capita, social support, healthy life expectancy, freedom, generosity and perceptions of corruption.

Finland and its Nordic neighbours – Denmark, Iceland and Norway – all stormed the top ten.

The Netherlands also made the top ten list. / Credit: Wirestock/FreePik

But there is a possibly surprising appearance from Israel at number five, although the country has been in the top ten since 2022.

The authors point out that its rankings are based on a three-year average, which often dampens the effect of “cataclysmic events happening during a particular year.”

The report, which relies heavily on the Gallup World Poll, also includes a ranking for Palestine at number 103, although its statehood is not widely recognised. The poll was conducted in the Palestinian territories of Gaza and the West Bank before the events of October 7.

World’s 20 happiest countries in 2024

1. Finland

2. Denmark

3. Iceland

4. Sweden

5. Israel

6. Netherlands

7. Norway

8. Luxembourg

9. Switzerland

10. Australia

The United Kingdom has been ranked in the top 20. / Credit: Wirestock/FreePik

11. New Zealand

12. Costa Rica

13. Kuwait

14. Austria

15. Canada

16. Belgium

17. Ireland

18. Czechia

19. Lithuania

20. United Kingdom

At the bottom of the list

Afghanistan remains the world’s lowest-ranked country for happiness. Lebanon, Lesotho, Sierra Leone and Congo also ranked at the bottom.

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