Practical info
25 September 2017

Is Iceland expensive?

You’ve probably already heard that Iceland’s expensive. While we mostly agree, we also know that you can get by on a relatively low budget if you’re frugal and don’t mind skipping fancy restaurants and private tours. And let’s not forget the best part: Almost all the best sights and wonders in Iceland are FREE. Since you´ll have a rental car from us, you can visit a lot of places in a short amount of time, and plenty of them are cheap. We’ve gathered lists for free and low-budget activities in Iceland. Enjoy!

What you can get for free in Iceland

  • Free tap water. Perfectly clean and fresh.
  • Free Wi-Fi in many places, even whole towns like Stykkishólmur.
  • Free access to (most) natural wonders. Some charge a small fee for parking or access.
  • Free walking tour in Reykjavík, optional tip at the end.
  • Free access to some museums like the sculpture garden of The Einar Jónsson Art Museum and the Museum of Photography.
  • Free access to Nauthólsvík beach, although using the facilities costs a few hundred ISK during winter.
  • Strolling through Kolaportið flea market in downtown Reykjavík.
  • Watching the Northern Lights.
  • Go for a stroll along the harbor or a hike up mount Esja just outside of Reykjavík.

Is Icelandic expensive?

Ideas for low-budget activities in Iceland

  • Swim in the geothermal pools you´ll find all over the country.
  • Eat a hot dog at the famous Icelandic hot dog stand (or other similar ones across the country).
  • Visit museums. Admission prices are usually fair.
  • Go horse riding. You don’t have to be an expert rider, you can go on a short tour for beginners. A 3-hour tour (including transfer) is around 8.800 ISK per person.

Extra tips

  • Buy alcohol at the airport in the duty-free store, it’s cheaper.
  • If you have a Costco membership you can stock up and buy gas in Costco wholesale in the Reykjavík area.
  • The cheapest grocery stores in Iceland are usually Bónus and Krónan, so be on the lookout for them if you need snacks, drinks or other groceries.
  • To make your trip a little less expensive we have a 5% discount code for you. Simply enter #exp19 at checkout when you book a rental car from us at Blue car rental!

The bottom line: If you’re ok with eating a little less fancy food that you’re used to, and make smart choices when it comes to activities, Iceland isn’t that horribly expensive. You can view all the inspiring natural wonders you’ve seen in pictures for free, and we feel that’s a huge benefit. Don’t forget to use your discount code! 

We've also gathered what we feel are the best value tours in Iceland in one place, check it out!