W?hen it comes to parental leave entitlements, not all countries are created equal.
While some countries offer 12 months of paid leave, in countries such as the US, women are only entitled to 12 weeks of unpaid leave.
That's before the cost of childcare comes into the financial mix.
We've rounded up the countries we think are best to have a baby in, based on these considerations and spoiler: Scandanavian countries get an A+ for policies.
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Sweden may be the envy of the world when it comes to paid parental leave.
Eligible parents can take an incredible 480 days (approximately 16 months) of paid leave.
The first 390 days of this is based on your income, while the remaining 90 days is paid at $25 per day.?
Incredibly, this leave can be taken up until your child turns 12, though only 96 (or 132 if twins) of these days can be taken after the child turns four.?
According to the Evening Standard, parents are also given a monthly subsidy of $150 to pay for childcare, which costs on average $177 per month. ?
J?apan has a progressive policy entitling both parents to 12 months of paid parental leave.
Childcare is also free for children aged three-five, and subsidised for younger children, subject to parents meeting certain criteria.
Iceland is one of top countries to give birth in.
Parents are each entitled to six months leave for babies and adopted children, which is paid at 80 per cent of their average total salary.
They can also opt to transfer six weeks of their allotted leave to the other parent and need only have worked for six months to be eligible.
There is also an option to an extended period of unpaid leave to care for a child up to the age of eight.
Antenatal care and childbirth are free for those who have health insurance. And as part of their post-natal care services, midwives also visit the home for five days following hospital discharge.
According to UNICEF, Iceland is also one of the top rated countries for the quality of early childhood education, with a lower ratio of children per educator and a high education standard for teachers.
It's also considered very accessible. Up to 50 per cent of one-year-old's are enrolled, rising to roughly 80 per cent for two-year-old's and close to 100 per cent for ages three-five.
Primary carers are entitled to up to 35 weeks parental leave, at 55 per cent of your average weekly insurable earnings, capped at $638 per week.
There is also the option to take this over 61 weeks, paid at a lower weekly capped rate of $383. ?
Parents can opt to share their leave, which is then extended to 40 weeks at the full rate, or 69 weeks of partial payments.
In great news for families welcoming babies in the next few years, the Canadian government has also pledged to reduce childcare fees to $10 per day by 2026.
Couples living together at the time of their child's birth are entitled to 24 weeks leave each, of which 13 of these can be transferred to the other parent.
Parents need only have worked for four months prior to leave (subject to certain conditions) to be eligible for paid parental leave.
And parents who move to Denmark from another EU/EEA country during the four months preceeding can still count their previous employment towards this, however must be currently employed in Denmark at the time leave is commenced.
These benefits are also extended to parents who move to Denmark with their baby, subject to meeting the criteria.
When it comes to childcare, every child is guaranteed a place in a childcare institution. The average cost of childcare per month equates to $584 for those aged up to three and $427 for those three and up. The government also pays a (means testes) subsidy and siblings are given a 50 per cent discount (based on the sibling with the cheaper rate).
Both mothers and fathers in Slovenia are each entitled to 130 days of paid parental leave.
This is extended if parents have multiples, a premature birth or if the child needs special care.
The benefit paid is 100 per cent ?if the parent's wage, but is capped at 2.5 times the average monthly wage.
Parents may also be eligible for a childbirth grant, which is a one-off payment to assist in the purchase of necessities for their baby.?
Each parent is entitled to 160 days paid leave, equating to 320 days if taken by two parents. Parents also have the option to take some of their parental allowance at the same time, or choose to work part-time and get a partial allowance.
All children aged under school age are entitled to a daycare place, even if one or both parents aren't working. Care is also subsidised, based on a means/activity test.
M?others in the UK are entitled to take 12 months of maternity leave, no matter how long they have worked for their employer.
While fathers may be eligible for up to 26 weeks parental leave.?
Statutory maternity leave is available for eligible employees, offering 39 weeks paid leave. The first six weeks is paid at 90 per cent of a person's average weekly earnings, and the remaining 33 weeks at $278.?
Bereaved (employed) parents are also entitled to leave or pay if their baby is stillborn after 24 weeks, or dies after being born.
While some childcare relief is available, the average cost for full time care per week sits around $468 (or $93 per day). ?
In Germany, women are entitled to 14 weeks maternity leave (six weeks before, eight weeks after childbirth which can be extended to 12 weeks for cesarean or multiple births).
There are also restrictions around work hours for pregnant or breastfeeding mothers?, such as no working between 10pm-6am, no overtime and no more than 8.5 hours per day. There are also mandated breastfeeding breaks.
?Parents who meet certain eligibility criteria can apply for a parental allowance, which is means tested and can be claimed between two-12 months.
Low income workers can receive between 67-100 per cent of their monthly income, while those at the top end receive ?65 per cent.
Families with more than two children in the family can also claim an extra 10 per cent per month, while for multiples, and extra $472 is paid per extra child.
Ireland offers paid maternity leave for 26 weeks for eligible expectant mothers.
This commences from birth if the baby is born prematurely, and ?is extended in this case.
Women are also entitled to an extra 16 weeks of unpaid leave.
A child's primary carer can receive up to 26 weeks paid leave?.
This is also offered to those whose baby ?dies before or after birth.
Parents are also able to apply for a further 26 weeks of unpaid leave.
P?rimary carers in Australia are entitled to 12 months maternity leave (subject to meeting certain criteria). A further 12 months of leave may also be offered, subject to an employer's discretion.
Eligible parents can apply for up to 18 weeks of government funded paid parental leave, set at ?the weekly rate of the national minimum wage (currently $812 per week).