Safe Travel in Iceland: New Regulations

21 Aug 2020

Some of the information in this blog is now outdated. For the latest official advice and regulations, please consult the following links

  1. For more information on traveling to Iceland and entrance requirements please visit the website of the Icelandic Directorate of Immigration.
  2. For more detailed information, and to follow all updates we advise all travelers to visit the Government of Iceland’s website.
  3. For all COVID-19 related information, statistics, and up-to-date restrictions, please visit the dedicated COVID-19 information portal from the Icelandic Directorate of Health, and the National Commissioner of Police.

Safe travel is our number one priority, and we want to help everyone enjoy their visit to Iceland whilst compiling with the new regulations.


On 19th August 2020 Iceland implemented new rules for all those, travellers and residents, arriving into our country from abroad. We always recommend following the most up-to-date information provided by the Icelandic Government on, as this will enable you to make a clear assessment and be aware of any recent changes. If you have questions relating to visas, or whether you can travel to Iceland based upon residency or citizenship, then we strongly advise that you contact your local Icelandic embassy or consulate as they can provide you will the relevant legal information.

Should I cancel my Trip?

Probably not, as you don’t need to make a hasty decision. BusTravel Iceland has always offered a great and flexible cancellation policy. For a full refund you can cancel all tours up to 24 hours before departure (Golden Circle and Blue Lagoon must be cancelled 48 hours prior to departure due to their cancellation policy).

BusTravel Iceland also offers free and unlimited rescheduling for all our tours, if done more than 24 hours before departure. If you have made a booking with one of our special summer discounts you may decide to choose this option in order to keep that discounted price.

Iceland is an extremely safe country, with low crime and a widely dispersed population resulting in large stretches of open countryside. The way the Government handled the pandemic has been very successful and received praise and coverage in the international media. With these new precautions it will be an even safer country to visit, and with fewer tourists around you will be able to see Iceland like never before!

Ultimately this is a decision that is up to you. However, you don’t need to give up on your Iceland dream. We understand that travel is uncertain in this current climate and we always do our best to help and look after our guests.

How do these new regulations impact on my holiday?

Essentially you will have to spend the first 4-6 days in quarantine whilst you undergo two separate tests for COVID19. As of August 19, there aren’t any countries exempt from testing upon arrival in Iceland. All countries are considered high-risk and have to undergo the same procedure.

Whilst this may seem frustrating it will ensure a safe and enjoyable holiday in Iceland. There are many accommodation providers who have prepared for this and are offering special packages whereby they can supply your essential items. Although you are in quarantine and you will not be allowed to visit any attractions, even those located outside, you can still go for short walks in the local vicinity if you are able to avoid contact with other people. Many guesthouses and hotels have facilities such as hot tubs and saunas which you can enjoy so long as only your travel group has access to it. Essentially you can regard this quarantine as a super relaxing stay in a beautiful country, helping you to unwind before your action-packed adventure of exploring Iceland can start!

For all the essential information we strongly encourage you to follow the official government website where you can ensure that you follow all the rules and regulations correctly.

What are the key things I need to do when travelling to Iceland?

  • Check if there are any restrictions on your ability to travel to Iceland, such as citizenship or residency. Make sure you travel with the correct documents!
  • Pre-register your arrival through the website. This can be done up to 72 hours before departure and you will be unable to enter the country until you have completed the relevant form. You will need to provide an address where you intend to quarantine, and a list of all the countries you have visited in the past 14 days.
  • Prepare to be tested for COVID19 at Keflavik Airport. You will take a second test 4-6 days later and you will be provided with all details on how to make an appointment for that test. There are several testing facilities located around Iceland, and the second test is free of charge. More information can be found on the official website.
  • Between the first and second test, and whilst you wait for the test results, you must stay in home-based quarantine. This means that you cannot leave the location to go food shopping or to visit any attractions, although you can go for short walks where you are able to keep a 2 meter distance between yourself and other people. There are several accommodation providers who are prepared to receive quarantining guests, and will bring you food and other essentials. For more information please see the Directorate of Health’s guidelines.
  • If the results of your second test are negative you are free to explore Iceland! You will be contacted if your result is positive and supported whilst you recover.
  • It is recommended that you install the Rakning C-19 app whilst you travel in Iceland as it has proven very effective in tracing and preventing the spread of the COVID19 coronavirus in Iceland.


Healthcare in Iceland: What to do if you get sick

When travelling to Iceland we always strongly advise all our passengers to purchase comprehensive travel insurance. Travellers who need to visit a doctor in Iceland should make sure they bring an insurance card or papers, and a valid passport and/or international identity document.

Whilst the likelihood of COVID19 infection in Iceland is very low, healthcare facilities around the country have still prepared robust response plans.

If you think you have been infected with the coronavirus, health officials recommend that you immediately self-quarantine and call 1770 (+354 544 4113). Do not visit any healthcare centres unless you are explicitly directed to.

In the very unlikely event that you contract COVID19 in Iceland, and develop respiratory issues or other complications related to the virus, you will be hospitalised in one of the main two hospitals in Iceland. One is located in the very centre of Reykjavik, and the other is in the Reykjavik suburbs, about a 10-minute drive from downtown. Iceland is renowned for its excellent healthcare, and for insured travellers’ in-patient hospitalisation is free. Keep in mind that ambulance services cost a fee.


Main Hospital - Landspitali
Hringbraut 101, 101 Reykjavík, Iceland

Recommended experiences