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Last updated 22 January 2021
After months of dormancy due to the raging pandemic, the travel industry is gearing up for a return to small normalcy with borders reopening, easing of quarantine requirements, and creation of travel bubbles. Travellers around the world are now keen to find out if, when and where they can travel abroad. One country that’s been on many travel wish lists is Iceland.
Can anyone do so now? What do they need to know if they’re planning to fly to Iceland during this time?
Who can travel to Iceland?
Iceland continues to be open to visitors from the Schengen area itself, throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the official website of the Iceland Police, travel to and from the island country is possible for:
- Nationals of Iceland and member states of the EEA and EFTA (including the UK) as well as nationals of Andorra, Monaco, San Marino and the Vatican
- Relatives of Icelandic citizens, EEA/EFTA citizens and citizens of Andorra, Monaco, San Marino and the Vatican, if the purpose of travel is to visit their relatives in Iceland
- Foreign nationals with a valid residence permit or other right of residence or residence in Iceland or in another EEA/EFTA state (including the United Kingdom), Andorra, Monaco, San Marino or the Vatican
- Relatives of a residence permit holder in Iceland or in another EEA/EFTA state (including the United Kingdom), Andorra, Monaco, San Marino or the Vatican
- Foreign nationals who are in a close para relationship with a legally resident person in Iceland for at least 6 months
- Travellers on urgent missions
The borders of Iceland are also open to foreign nationals who are residents of and are arriving from:
- New Zealand
- South Korea
However, to curb the transmission of COVID-19, Iceland has imposed travel restrictions on all third-country nationals. Leisure travel and tourism have been prohibited. On arrival, travellers will have to show with proof a reason for their visit.
All passengers have to mandatorily fill out a pre-registration form that includes their contact details, flight information, travel dates, information about their accommodation during quarantine and a declaration about their health. However, pre-registration should not be construed as travel authorization.
Downloading and using the Rakning C-19 tracking app is highly recommended by the government.
Do I need to quarantine if I travel to Iceland?
As per the guidelines published by Iceland’s official website for Covid-19, passengers flying to Iceland from outside the Schengen Area have two options:
- Quarantine themselves for 14 days, or
- Go through the COVID-19 screening procedure. Travellers will have to give the PCR test twice 4-5 days apart, to mitigate the risk of false negatives. They will have to stay in isolation until the second test’s results are confirmed negative. The cost for the first test is ISK 9,000 (if paid at pre-registration) and ISK 11,000 (if paid on arrival), while the second test is free of charge. Testing facilities will be available at Keflavik airport and in Seydisfjordur as well as local healthcare centres for those arriving at other international airports.
The following persons are exempt from screening and quarantine:
- Children (defined as those who have not reached the age of 18)
- Those who have been certified by Iceland’s health authorities through a PCR test to have previously contracted COVID-19 and completed 14 days isolation
- Those who have been certified by Iceland’s health authorities through a PCR test to have recovered from COVID-19 by antibody measurements
All travellers are advised and encouraged to take precautionary measures, such as frequently washing and sanitizing hands, maintaining a distance of 2 metres from others, avoiding crowded places and needless to say, wearing a mask.
Are there flights to Iceland now?
International flights flying in and out of Iceland can be booked conveniently on Wego. Just make sure your nationality and country of residence are in line with the published guidelines, and complete pre-arrival formalities before departure.