Visiting Iceland 2021
Plan more time
Traveling changed with COVID-19 and we believe that trips will be longer. That can be a good thing, right? From personal experience we can say that the quarantine solution in Iceland is manageable. Perhaps you followed our story when one of us tried traveling to Iceland during COVID-19 to learn how it really feels. The experience was great and it became part of the travel experience to stay in quarantine for a few days.
If you read the information below (source: covid.is) you will learn about the possibilities of entering Iceland. Iceland still has the sam rules as last year, 2020. There are discussions amongst politicians to make things easier but at this point that is all but speculation. There are also discussions in regards of the vaccine and how that can influence the current rules. Our recommendation is this: Choose the double screening (PCR) at the border. Travel to Iceland at least 4-6 days before rental (pick up day). Choose a hotel to stay at during quarantine, we can book it for you and know just which one to choose. Let us know when you need the room and if you wish a rental car during the time. Here is the list of Hotels that offer this service: https://www.ferdamalastofa.is/en/about-us/novel-coronavirus-covid-19-general-info/accommodations-that-welcome-guests-in-quarantine
Staying in the Motor Home during quarantine
Technically and legally that is possible and many Camper Rental companies are telling you to do it. The requirement is a shower, toilet etc. and that is only provided in a Motor Home. It is not possible in Camper or 4×4 Campers. However there are a few things to bear in mind. Section “Main points to keep in mind regarding quarantine” (below) shows what you can and cannot do. Basically it means you will have to stay at a camp site and cannot use public facilities. Issues are: Who buys groceries, electrical availability, who fills up the vehicle with gasoline or diesel, what if the propane goes out (heating system will not work), what to do if a technical problem occurs etc. Hence, we decided not to recommend this solution. Staying in a Hotel is the smart and right thing to do.
Please read these instructions, source is the Icelandic government www.covid.is
Travel to and within Iceland
Passengers coming to Iceland can choose between either undergoing two tests for COVID-19 with a 5-day quarantine interval between tests until the results of the second test have been discovered or avoiding testing by undergoing a 14-day quarantine from their date of arrival to Iceland. Children born in 2005 or later are exempt from testing but as from Wednesday, 13 January 2021, they are required to go into quarantine along with their parents or guardians after entering Iceland.
Same applies to persons who the Icelandic health authorities have confirmed, by means of a PCR test, have previously contracted COVID-19 and completed their period of quarantine or if COVID-19 infection has been confirmed by antibody counts.
As of 10 December 2020, both certificates of confirmed COVID-19 infection in Iceland and comparable certificates from countries within EU/EFTA will be accepted. Transit passengers who do not leave the relevant border point shall not be required to undergo quarantine or testing.
A certificate is required to include the following details:
Be in the Icelandic, Danish, Norwegian, Swedish or English language.
First name and last name (as in travel documents).
Date of birth.
When test was performed (date).
Where test was performed (country/city/address).
Name of laboratory/issuer of certificate.
Date of certifcate.
Phone number of laboratory or responsible authority.
Type of test performed (PCR-test or antibody test with ELISA/serologic assay**).
Result of test (PCR-test positive for SARS-CoV-2 or antibodies present).
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 travelling to Iceland.
Persons travelling 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 numberof 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 email@example.com 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