How much things cost in Iceland
Whilst Iceland draws in a myriad of international visitors each year, the country has a reputation other than the allure of its magnificent natural wonders. Consumer prices in Iceland are on average higher than other parts of Europe, however there are many ways to travel in Iceland whatever your budget.
We’ve created the following guide to give you an indication of how much a trip to Iceland could cost, what you can expect to pay for typical items throughout your trip, and how to maximize your budget.
How much is a trip to Iceland?
Depending on your timescale and interests, the cost of an Iceland trip will vary. Our Travel Specialists will work with you to design your holiday to suit your budget. We have numerous suggested itineraries on our website that can provide a guide how much a trip could cost. The cost of our trips can also include accommodation options, excursions, expert guides or car rental. Prices will vary depending on the time of year you are travelling, but you can also save money by travelling outside of summer – May and September are beautiful months in Iceland.
Example Itineraries for your budget and timescale
How can you maximize your budget in Iceland?
The major appeal of Iceland is its abundance of natural wonders; incredible waterfalls, dramatic black beaches and a plethora of hot springs and geysers. Many of the sights are easily accessible and free too look at, but you do need to factor in transport (whether that is self-drive or with a guided service). In and around the capital, the Reykjavík City Card offers free entry to a great selection of museums and galleries, all swimming pools in Reykjavík and free unlimited travel by bus within the Reykjavik Capital Area. In addition, the card also gives you a free ferry trip to Viðey island and discounts on various tours, in shops and on services. It’s available for 24/48/72 hours, with prices starting from ISK 4,000/1,650 (adult/child) £25/£10. *Prices for 2020.
Eating and Drinking
In the last few years, Iceland has witnessed a surge in its local food scene; offering endless possibilities when it comes to dining. Eating out can be rather expensive, and considered a treat by locals. One of the best ways to keep costs down when it comes to eating out, is to take advantage of lunch time hours. Alternatively, you can cook for yourself.
- Outside the main towns, restaurants are generally only found in hotels.
- Reykjavik has a wide range of restaurants with typical Icelandic cuisine, gourmet dining and world famous hotdogs!
- Fish dishes are usually cheaper than meat. *Please note: many Icelanders may not be familiar with what is suitable for vegetarians and vegans – if you have any concerns about your dietary requirements, our Iceland Specialists will be happy to advise you.
- Restaurants often promote lunchtime special menus which are excellent value (around £20-30pp for a soup and fish of the day)
- A 2-3 course dinner (without wine) will set you back around £30-50 (fish) £40-60 (meat) per person.
- Breakfast will usually be included within the cost of your accommodation.
- Look out for these stores to pick up your own grocery’s: Bónus (if you’re on a budget) and Víðir (good quality and healthy options) and Hagkaup (hypermarket). Out in the countryside Samkaup stores, either Samkaup Úrval or Samkaup Strax, are more common. You’ll also be able to pick up fast food and snacks at many petrol stations
- You can purchase alcohol duty free as you arrive at Keflavik airport, so you might prefer to stock up there. Depending on what you buy, airport prices are up to 50% lower than in Reykjavík retail stores.
As a tourist you can claim back the value-added tax (VAT) on certain goods over the value of ISK 6,000. As long as the total amount spent on one receipt is greater than this (including VAT), you can claim back the tax on everything, even if some items cost less than ISK 6,000 individually. Make sure you get a tax receipt when you make your purchase. Claims can be processed at the refund desk of the tourist information centre in Reykjavik or in departures at Keflavik.
How much things cost in Iceland
|Item||ISK (average)||Price in GBP (approx)|
|Bottle of water||263||£1.51|
|Meal, inexpensive restaurant||2,500||£14.32|
|Three course meal for two at a mid-range restaurant (excluding wine)||15,000||£85|
|Domestic beer (half litre)||1,200||£6.87|
|Imported Beer (0.33l)||1,000||£5.73|
|One way transport ticket||470||£2.69|
|Taxi (normal tariff)||700||£4.01|
|Reykjavik City Card||4,00||£25|
Discover more about Iceland
If you're planning a trip to Iceland take a look at our travel guides answering commonly asked questions as well as providing top tips for travellers.
Here is a selection of our most popular queries, answered by our team of Iceland Travel Specialists.
Your Guide to Iceland’s Culture and Traditions
A land of otherworldly landscapes and shimmering northern lights, Iceland's natural wonders are well established among adventure travellers but there is more to Iceland that what nature has bequeathed. The country’s ancient heritage and quirky folklore blends with a modern culture of food, craft beer, and a love and respect for the outdoors.
Best Time To Visit Iceland
The short answer is anytime you like! Iceland is a year-round destination, punctuated by two heavenly highlights: the midnight sun in summer and the northern lights in winter.
The Ultimate Guide to Hiking in Iceland
Fresh air, exercise, long daylights hours and natural wonders around every corner: if you love hiking and walking then read on.
Your Guide to Exploring Iceland’s Volcanoes
Iceland is known as the ‘Land of Ice and Fire’, defined by its many glaciers and multitude of volcanoes. Erupting from the ocean over 18 million years ago, the island's terrain has changed little since, scattered with moss-covered lava fields, black sand beaches, and jagged mountainous peaks.