Information for visitors
Travel to and within Iceland
As of 16 August, vaccinated passengers with connections to Iceland must be sampled within 48 hours of arrival in the country. This was decided at a government meeting this morning.
Individuals with connections to Iceland are considered:
- Icelandic citizens
- Individuals living in Iceland
- Individuals with a work permit in Iceland
- Applicants for a work permit or international protection in Iceland
The passengers in question will not have to be quarantined until the results of the sampling are available. People are expected to undergo either an antigen or PCR test, but further arrangements will be made in consultation with the epidemiologist. It will then be possible to take samples either at the border or at a sampling station within the time limit and the sampling will be free of charge. Individuals who do not take samples within a certain time must be fined.
According to information from the Office of the Epidemiologist, about 90% of the individuals who have been diagnosed with COVID-19 as of 1 July have an Icelandic ID number. It is important to ensure protection against new strains of the virus and therefore this decision is made. Demonstration of a negative COVID test at the border will continue to be required, but double sampling every few days has proved successful during the epidemic.
Work will be done on further implementation of the project in the next few days, and among other things, an epidemiologist's assessment will be requested of the group to which the operations should be limited.
The people of Iceland are strongly advised against unnecessary travel to risk areas due to COVID-19 unless they have been fully vaccinated. Special rules apply to travel to the country . Attention is drawn to the fact that in border regulations, all passengers are considered tourists, whether they live in Iceland or are visitors .
Accessible information on border rules
Here you will find a shortcut in English that explains the main rules that apply at the border. This information is for guidance only, but the final decision is always in the hands of border guards upon arrival in the country.
Travel restrictions Icelandic borders are open to the residents and citizens of the EEA and Switzerland, and Iceland follows the travel restrictions of the outer borders of the Schengen area which are in effect at present. Here you will be able to find all necessary information on the travel restrictions applicable for travel to Iceland due to COVID-19.
Pre-registration Pre-registration for arrivals to Iceland. All travellers are under obligation to complete a registration form, follow infection prevention rules and are encouraged to download the Rakning C-19 app (a tracking app). Pre-registration does not constitute travel authorisation.
The Rakning C-19 app The app is used is used to send information on negative results from screening tests and to help track infections if necessary. The Rakning C-19 app – Information and instructions
Border screening and quarantine
The first screening is performed at the border on arrival. Thereafter, arriving passengers are to undergo quarantine for 5–6 days according to the instructions for home-based quarantine or quarantine guidelines for persons traveling to Iceland.
Persons traveling to Iceland may not be picked up at the airport. This includes family members and friends. Arrivals to Iceland must take the flybus, a taxi, a rental car, or a private car that has been dropped off at the airport.
As of 1 December 2020, testing at the border will be temporarily free of charge, or until 31 January 2021. It is important to read the instructions on the screening process, i.e. the procedure used after arrival in Iceland.
Main points to keep in mind regarding quarantine:
You may obtain necessary medical treatment services on condition of having first contacted your nearest healthcare centre, Læknavakt/1700, the emergency hotline 112 or + 354 544 4113 if phoning from an overseas telephone number.
You may go for walks in less frequented areas but must keep at least two metres away from other pedestrians.
You may not have physical contact with others who share the home and must take the greatest care to ensure cleanliness and try to maintain a distance of at least 1–2 metres when in contact with other members of the household.
You may not use public transport (domestic flights, buses, coaches), only taxis, rental cars and private cars.
You may not go to restaurants, bars or gatherings of any form, such as swimming pools, cinemas, the theatre, shops or other places where large numbers of people congregate.
You may not undertake personal errands or go shopping. This includes pharmacies, supermarkets, post offices, banks, etc. Delivery services are available from Internet shops and restaurants.
You may not go to work or school.
You may not go on excursions and may not drive long distances, except between a border crossing and your final quarantine destination if such location is in a different region.
Subsequent screening and quarantine until the results are sent
Your second screening test will be performed in a healthcare centre. Screening is performed in a number of locations around Iceland. Please note that not all healthcare centres have the same opening hours. Your obligation to remain in quarantine will be removed as soon as you receive a negative result from your second screening.
A positive result will always result in isolation, and in such cases, the instructions on home isolation must be followed. The diagnosis, treatment and the monitoring of notifiable diseases, including COVID-19, is free of charge. This does not apply to optional testing for COVID-19. The second screening is free of charge.
A negative result from border screening does not mean that you can ignore the quarantine obligation if it becomes clear that you have been exposed to infection, such as if you sat near an infected person during aircraft travel. Those who are unexpectedly quarantined and who do not have access to a quarantine facility may take advantage of public quarantine facilities.
On offer is a list of guesthouses/hotels that accept quarantine guests.
Please note that violations of quarantine or isolation rules are subject to fines and the involvement of the authorities to prevent violations.
Other important information
People who are travelling are advised to familiarise themselves with the travel advice of the authorities as regards COVID-19.
It is important that persons who find it difficult to leave locations in which they find themselves to contact the citizens’ services by sending an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org or sending a message via Facebook. In emergencies, you can contact the emergency citizens’ service of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs by calling +354 545 0112. Information services are provided at any time (24/7).
Principal information on the rights of travellers as regards COVID-19 may be found on the website of Ferðamálastofa.
In closing, it is always worth remembering to ensure general hygiene, particularly washing your hands with soap and water.
Defined risk areas
It is important to know what rules are in effect at any given time as regards defined infection risk areas and the rules that apply to travelling across borders.
The list of countries defined as risk areas is regularly revised.
Travel from Iceland
Icelandic residents are advised to avoid travelling to risk areas