The article explores the extent to which the organization of vocational tracks in upper secondary school affects the labour market risks associated with early school exit. The Nordic countries share many features, but the upper secondary school systems differ significantly in how their vocational tracks are organized. Denmark and Norway have dual vocational tracks, that is, they combine school-based education and workplace apprenticeships, whereas in Finland and Sweden they are primarily school based. We analyse administrative longitudinal data from the mid-1990s to the mid-2000s in the four countries and find the highest vocational track dropout rates in Norway and the lowest in Finland. The results indicate that the relative labour market effect of dropping out from a vocational track is most detrimental in Norway. It is also in Norway that we find the greatest gender differences in this respect.