How Expensive is Iceland? 7 Financial Facts about Visiting the Country

When you want to travel to the Land of Fire and Ice, your first thought is you might not be able to afford it. But you might be surprised to find out Iceland isn’t as expensive as most people imagine. Even though Iceland is ranked as one of the most expensive countries in the world, is it really that expensive to visit?

The informational guide below will go over seven financial facts about visiting Iceland. The guide will also detail how expensive is Iceland? In learning more about the land of Fire and Ice, you should be prepared to be astonished and mesmerized when you read how traveling and exploring Iceland isn’t quite what you thought it would be.

It’s better.

Traveling to Iceland

The best way to travel to Iceland is through Icelandair. The airline is an Iceland-based carrier and has the best direct and affordable prices. If you live in the U.S. some of the hubs offering Icelandair travel are in Los Angeles, Chicago, Pittsburg, Washington D.C., Miami, New York, Boston, and San Francisco. Icelandair offers complimentary in-flight entertainment.

One of the most unique things about traveling on Icelandair is that it has arranged for you to have an Icelandair Buddy. The Icelandair Buddy helps you find places and things to do in Iceland that appeal to your niche interest. They can also arrange for you to find an Icelandair Buddy who can show you the best places to explore and learn about if you don’t know what you want to do yet.

Icelandair Buddy Program

Icelandair Airline decided to promote the Icelandair Buddy program when they did a study which gave them the average American traveler’s perception about traveling in general. Icelandair’s study revealed:

  • 52% of Americans feel anxious about going on vacation because they don’t know what to do on their trips
  • 27% of Americans feel overwhelmed when they have to plan a vacation trip
  • 68% of Americans want to have access to local knowledge when visiting a new country

In general, Icelandair found out that most travelers want to find the off the beaten path hidden gems that usually only locals know. The same travelers will shop locally in an effort to help sustain the places they visit. Most of all, if you offer travelers incentives most countries see a boost in tourism figures.

How Expensive is Iceland?

The magic question is, how expensive is Iceland? If you commit to checking into going on a trip to Iceland what are going to be your greatest cost factors? Why is Iceland considered so expensive to visit?

The seven financial facts listed below should help you figure out why you may want to move forward with that vacation of a lifetime. It’s said that the best way to get around Iceland is on your own terms. That’s because Iceland appeals to the rebel in us all.

All of us, at one time or another, has wanted to get away to explore, find, and have an adventure. Iceland is your chance to do all that and more. Most people find out that when you travel to Iceland, you can see everything you want to see in one trip.

If you can’t come back to Iceland anytime soon, you’ll have to learn how to prioritize to see the wonders, beautiful landscapes, and exciting spots. There are seven financial facts listed below you can integrate into your Iceland itinerary. It’s going to be an exciting trip with much to see so let’s figure out how much it’s going to cost.

#1 – Prices are Sixty-Six % Higher Than in Europe

Iceland Magazine reports consumer prices in Iceland are about sixty-six percent higher than they are in Europe. The problem is not that hotels, restaurants, and anything in-between are trying to get rich off of tourists. The problem is that Iceland is a breath away from the Arctic Circle. 

There’s not a lot of farmland that conducive to growing the mainstay crop staples of potatoes, corn, wheat, etc. Iceland does grow some crops that are native to Iceland. But their growing season is super short.

Because Iceland doesn’t have a lot of native crops, poultry, or meat, they have to import a lot of everything. Iceland even imports sweets and alcohol and in so doing has to pay an extra cargo fee and hefty tariff. Even with some of the higher-priced goods, tourism continues to grow because there’s no other place on Earth like Iceland.

#2 – Lodgings and Hotels are Reasonable

While food may be a bit pricey in Iceland, you can get a hotel in Iceland anywhere from $100 a night to a 4+ star hotel at $250+ a night. All in all, it’s what you pay in the United States for a hotel and sometimes cheaper than what you pay in some major U.S. cities. You can even get a cheaper room if you’re willing to share a bathroom for about $71 a night.

All in all, Iceland is reasonable with their hotel lodgings, and while the above is just the average price, it’s typical in that you pay more to stay in the city than in the country. For instance, it’s more expensive to stay in Reykjavik than anywhere in the countryside with the same type of room. The hotel prices are remarkably very reasonable when you consider Iceland’s currency is very strong.

Iceland’s money is called krona. The krona is strong which means the prices of most things are pretty high. Even though the krona is high there are ways to save money especially if you’re willing to plan in advance and research where you can go within Iceland based on your budget.

#3 – Road Trips Are Reasonable

Prices for renting a car and going on a well-planned out road trip is very feasible and can be reasonable in price too. There are rental companies in Iceland that have wonderfully maintained vehicles that you can collect at the airports in Keflavik, Reykjavik, and Akureyri. Some of these companies can rent you small economy vehicles to large off-road terrain vehicles. 

With your rental vehicle, you can travel in style on the Ring Road – named so because it goes around the whole country of Iceland. Or you can travel along the Southcoast, which is almost 700 kilometers long. Either way, with a budget and plan of action to what and where you’ll stop, you’ll be able to stay in your budget.

One thing to be aware of is the basic collision damage waiver on rental cars comes with a common deductible of about $1500 – $3000 U.S. dollars. You can decrease your deductible by paying a little bit more, and it’s always worth the extra dollars.

#4 – Many of Iceland Attractions are Free

There are so many attractions in Iceland that are free, so it’s hard to know which ones to select for you to consider. But here are some of the most popular attractions that are beautiful, unique, and free. They are:

  • Natural landmarks are all free, and there are no national park fees
  • Many of the natural hot tubs are free for everyone to use although you may have to hike to get to some of them
  • Drinking water is so refreshing and pure, you can drink it out of the tap, and it’s also free
  • Drive anywhere in Iceland, and you never have to pay for any toll roads because they don’t exist in Iceland
  • Free attractions are scattered throughout Iceland so be on the lookout in the literature and travel brochures when you’re there

What’s more, the gas prices are about the same as they are in Europe right now, so no surprises or extra costs to driving around in your rental car.

#5 – Save Money in Iceland by Arranging your Trip Ahead of Time

Iceland’s like everywhere else in the world, which is if you arrange and plan your trip ahead of time, you can save money. It’s a financial fact no matter where you go in the world. To be able to effectively save money in Iceland you need to follow the magic formula below by arranging your trip in advance through the following:

  • Travel in the off-season which in Iceland means you travel when it’s NOT summer as in the summer you pay twice as much
  • When you book a hotel, make sure it includes a continental breakfast to eliminate having to purchase one meal a day
  • Book your hotel, car, activities, and events in advance if at all possible
  • If you can get a hotel with a small kitchenette, you can cook some of your meals saving costs for going out to restaurants

You can even go camping in Iceland for less than 20 Euros per person per day

#6 – U.S. Tourists to Iceland has Grown 380% Giving More Buying Power

Big numbers help drive some buying power when your traveling in groups, and if your American between 2014 – 2018 U.S. tourists grew by 380%. That means the U.S. has the largest tourist population going to Iceland. It also means that if you ever wanted to go to Iceland now’s the time to go.

If you can join a small tourist group going to Iceland from the U.S., every financial dollar you have to spend is reduced and lessened. There are special prices for large groups that come into hotels, restaurants and tourist attractions. So you can’t help by win if you want to travel with a tourist group and together enjoy a once in a lifetime adventure.

#7 – Book a Block that Includes Your Flight, Hotel, Excursions, and Meals

In Iceland, if you book by a block which includes one price for your flight, hotel, meals, and activities you can book most of these prime tourist extravaganza packages at around $2000 per person for five nights and six days. That includes traveling with a group of about 16 travelers and having a local expert show you the sights. You are given 100% guaranteed departures.

You’ll get to travel to see natural ice caves and watch the northern lights. You also will visit a floating iceberg and walk on a glistening ice-beach. Part of the trip brings you to the thundering waterfall of Gullfoss while you see the eruptions as they occur at the Geysir geothermal region of Iceland.

It’s not uncommon to stay in one of the four and five-star hotels while you travel around Iceland in these groups. You also will get to eat Icelandic cuisine, which offers you local, fresh, and traditional dishes to tempt your palate with their native food. For such a reasonable price you do have to travel between October and March which is Iceland’s off-season time.

Daytrips in Iceland Are a Bargain

Daytrips in Iceland are a bargain, and if you want to ferry over to the Westman Islands from Reykjavik you can see the marvelous puffin colonies. The spring and summer have the puffin colonies nesting, and they are a sight to behold. The windiest place on each is at Stórhöfði which can have you looking forward to going to the center of the Eldfell volcano to get away from the wind. 

Another inexpensive day trip is to Flatey Island, where you can ferry over to see the Arctic blooms. There is the Breiðafjörður Bay that boasts 3,000 rocky outcroppings, one on top of the other. There’s nothing like it anywhere else in the world. Both of the day trips are reasonable in price but give you a lifetime of memories.

Your Next Trip

Your next vacation should be to Iceland. How expensive is Iceland has an answer. It’s not that expensive if you plan in advance and stay on your budget.

There’s nothing like having an adventure that can take you further than you’ve ever been that teaches you more than you’ve ever imagined. If you can make the trip for a reasonable price why wouldn’t you book a trip for yourself or for you and someone you love. No one is promised forever, so sometimes you have to make forever happen for you through one of a kind trips.Iceland, the land of fire and ice, brings the ancient past, amazing present, and wondrous future to you every time you look at its night sky and watch the Aurora Borealis. Reach out to us today so we can help bring forever to you on your vacation to Iceland.