Caution
October 19, 2023

Worldwide Caution

Update
January 10, 2024

Information for U.S. Citizens in the Middle East

International Travel

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Learn About Your Destination

Iceland

Iceland
Iceland
Exercise normal precautions in Iceland.

Last Update: Reissued with updates to health information.

Exercise normal precautions in Iceland.

Read the country information page for additional information on travel to Iceland.

If you decide to travel to Iceland: 

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Embassy Messages

Alerts

Quick Facts

PASSPORT VALIDITY:

Three months required, six months recommended beyond your planned date of departure from the Schengen area.

BLANK PASSPORT PAGES:

Two pages required for entry stamp

TOURIST VISA REQUIRED:

Not required for stays less than 90 days

VACCINATIONS:

None

CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR ENTRY:

Any amount over 10,000 Euros or equivalent must be declared

CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR EXIT:

Any amount over 10,000 Euros or equivalent must be declared

Embassies and Consulates

U.S. Embassy Reykjavik

Engjateigur 7
105 Reykjavik
Iceland
Telephone:
+(354) 595-2200
Emergency Telephone: +(354) 595-2248
Fax: +(354) 562-9118
Email: 

Entry, Exit and Visa Requirements

COVID-19 Requirements
There are no COVID-related entry requirements for U.S. citizens. 

Visit the Icelandic Directorate of Immigration website for the most current visa information.

Traveling Through Europe: If you are planning to visit or travel through European countries, you should be familiar with the requirements of the Schengen Agreement. 

  • Your passport should be valid for at least three months beyond the period of stay if you plan on transiting a Schengen country review our U.S. Travelers in Europe page.  
  • You will need sufficient proof of funds and a return plane ticket. 
  • For additional information about visas for the Schengen area, see the Schengen Visa page.

The U.S. Department of State is unaware of any HIV/AIDS entry restrictions for visitors to or foreign residents of Iceland.

Find information on dual nationality, prevention of international child abduction and customs regulations on our websites.

Safety and Security

Terrorism: Terrorist groups and those inspired by such organizations are intent on attacking U.S. citizens abroad. Terrorists are increasingly using less sophisticated methods of attack – including knives, firearms, and vehicles – to more effectively target crowds. Frequently, their aim is unprotected or vulnerable targets, such as:

  • High-profile public events (sporting contests, political rallies, demonstrations, holiday events, celebratory gatherings, etc.)
  • Hotels, clubs, and restaurants frequented by tourists
  • Places of worship
  • Schools
  • Parks
  • Shopping malls and markets
  • Public transportation systems (including subways, buses, trains, and scheduled commercial flights) 

Crime: Iceland has a low crime rate with rare instances of violent crime. Using common sense will go a long way in ensuring you do not become a victim.

  • Do not put bags containing valuables, such as your passport, on the floor in bars or nightclubs.
  • Do not leave your valuables in parked vehicles, even if the vehicle is locked.
  • Be aware that downtown Reykjavik can become disorderly in the late night to early morning hours as people are leaving bars and clubs.

International Financial Scams: See the Department of State and the FBI pages for information on scams.

Victims of Crime: Report crimes to the local police by dialing 112 and contact the U.S. Embassy at ReykjavikConsular@state.gov. After working hours, call +(354)595-2248. Remember that local authorities are responsible for investigating and prosecuting crime.

See our webpage on help for U.S. victims of crime overseas.

We can:

  • Help you find appropriate medical care
  • Assist you in reporting a crime to the police
  • Contact relatives or friends with your written consent
  • Explain the local criminal justice process in general terms
  • Provide a list of local attorneys
  • Provide our information on victim’s compensation programs in the U.S.
  • Provide an emergency loan for repatriation to the United States and/or limited medical support in cases of destitution
  • Help you find accommodation and arrange flights home
  • Replace a stolen or lost passport

Domestic Violence: U.S. citizen victims of domestic violence should dial 112 for immediate emergency assistance and may contact the Embassy for non-emergency assistance.

The Icelandic Red Cross has a helpline that is open 24 hours a day, every day, for anyone needing assistance with grief, anxiety, fear, depression, or suicidal thoughts. Dial 1717 to reach Red Cross volunteers in Iceland.

Tourism: The tourism industry is generally regulated, and rules are regularly enforced; and professional staff is typically on hand in support of organized activities. Hazardous areas/activities are not always identified with appropriate signage. In the event of an injury, appropriate medical treatment is sporadic due to limited hours and geographic distance from care. Outside of a major metropolitan center, it may take more time for first-responders and medical professionals to stabilize a patient and provide life-saving assistance. U.S. citizens are strongly encouraged to purchase medical evacuation insurance. See our webpage for more information on insurance providers for overseas coverage.    

Local Laws & Special Circumstances

Criminal Penalties: You are subject to local laws. If you violate local laws, even unknowingly, you may be expelled, arrested, or imprisoned.  Individuals establishing a business or practicing a profession that requires additional permits or licensing should seek information from the competent local authorities, prior to practicing or operating a business.  

  • Importation of whale products to the United States: All persons are barred from importing whale products to the United States.
  • The Marine Mammal Protection Act makes it illegal to bring back whale products to the United States. 
  • Any importation of products containing whale to the United States will result in the seizure of the goods and possible criminal prosecution. Penalties include jail time and fines of up to $10,000.

Furthermore, some laws are also prosecutable in the U.S., regardless of local law. For examples, see our website on crimes against minors abroad and the Department of Justice website.

Arrest Notification: If you are arrested or detained, ask police or prison officials to notify the U.S. Embassy immediately. See our webpage for further information.

Counterfeit and Pirated Goods: Although counterfeit and pirated goods are prevalent in many countries, they may still be illegal according to local laws. You may also pay fines or have to give them up if you bring them back to the United States. See the U.S. Department of Justice website for more information.

Faith-Based Travelers:

 See the following webpages for details:

LGBTI Travelers: There are no legal restrictions on same-sex sexual relations or the organization of LGBTI events in Iceland. 

See our LGBTI Travel Information page and section 6 of our Human Rights report for further details.

Travelers with Disabilities: The law in Iceland law prohibits discrimination against persons with disabilities and requires that public accommodations and government buildings, including elevators, be accessible to individuals with disabilities. All government buildings in Iceland are wheelchair accessible, as are most museums, malls, and large shopping centers in the capital area. The public bus system and taxis provide transportation services for individuals with disabilities.

  • Many stores in the old downtown area in Reykjavik, such as around the popular shopping street of Laugavegur, are not wheelchair accessible.
  • Many sidewalks in downtown Reykjavik lack curb ramps, and the streets are steep.
  • Hotels outside Reykjavik and smaller hotels in the capital are not all accessible to individuals with disabilities.
  • There are very few paths or marked trails at natural attractions found outside urban areas.

Students: See our Students Abroad page and FBI travel tips.

Women Travelers: See our travel tips for Women Travelers.

Health

COVID-19 Testing:  COVID PCR and antigen tests are available for U.S. citizens in Iceland and results are available within 72 hours. Visit the Iceland government’s COVID-19 page for more information on COVID testing.  PCR tests that are not conducted upon request are at the citizen’s expense and average 7000ISK or $54. Antigen rapid tests are provided by private companies and the price varies between them. Test results are provided via text message or via e-mail.

COVID-19 Vaccines:  The COVID-19 vaccine is available for U.S. citizens to receive in Iceland. Visit the FDA's website to learn more about FDA-approved vaccines in the United States.  

Medical care in Iceland is of high quality, but limited services are available outside large, urban areas. The Icelandic medical system offers coverage only for people who live in Iceland. Non-residents are expected to pay their own medical costs, and you should be prepared to pay your bill in full before leaving the hospital or clinic.

For emergency services in Iceland, dial 112. For non-emergency medical assistance in the Reykjavik metropolitan area, dial 544-4114 during business hours. During non-business hours, dial 1770.

Ambulance services are: 

  • Not present throughout the country or have long response times  except in or near major population areas such as Reykjavik.  Iceland does have air ambulance services, but they are limited by weather and distance to the patient.
  • We do not pay medical bills. Be aware that U.S. Medicare does not apply overseas. Most hospitals and doctors overseas do not accept U.S. health insurance.

Medical Insurance: Make sure your health insurance plan provides coverage overseas. Most care providers overseas only accept cash payments, though most hospitals and clinics in Iceland do accept credit cards.  See our webpage for more information on insurance providers for overseas coverage.  Visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for more information on type of insurance you should consider before you travel overseas.

We strongly recommend supplemental insurance (our webpage) to cover medical evacuation.

Always carry your prescription medication in original packaging, along with your doctor’s prescription.  Check with the government of Iceland to ensure the medication is legal in Iceland. Please review the CDC guidance on purchasing medicine overseas. 

Vaccinations: Be up-to-date on all vaccinations recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Further health information:

Air Quality: Visit AirNow Department of State for information on air quality at U.S. Embassies and Consulates. The U.S. Embassy maintains a list of doctors and hospitals.  We do not endorse or recommend any specific medical provider or clinic.

Health facilities in general:

  • Adequate health facilities are available in the Reykjavik area and other major cities but health care in rural areas may be limited or unavailable.
  • Patients bear all costs for transfer to or between hospitals if the patient is not a permanent resident or citizen of Iceland.
  • Psychological and psychiatric services are available but in-patient care is frequently operating at capacity, and patients may require a wait-time for admission. Hospital-based care is only available in larger cities.

Assisted Reproductive Technology and Surrogacy

  • Surrogacy is illegal in Iceland.

Adventure Travel

  • Visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for more information about Adventure Travel.

General Health Language

  • Visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for more information about Resources for Travelers regarding specific issues in Icerland

Travel and Transportation

Road Conditions and Safety: Driving in Iceland is on the right side of the road, as in the United States.

  • All travelers in Iceland are strongly encouraged to monitor weather and road safety year-round through safetravel.is and road.is through the web or smart device applications.
  • While in Iceland, you may encounter road conditions that differ significantly from those in the United States. Less than one-third of Iceland’s total road network is paved, and many roads outside the capital, especially those that run through the center of the country, are impassable in winter (October through April).
  • Many bridges are only one lane wide (marked with a sign “Enibreid bru”) so drivers must be alert to oncoming traffic. There are also one-lane tunnels with pullout zones to yield to oncoming traffic.
  • Extreme care should be taken when driving in rural areas during the winter when daylight hours are limited and the weather and road conditions can change rapidly.
  • Many routes in the interior of the country are impassable until July due to muddy conditions and swollen rivers caused by snowmelt.
  • Always inform someone of your travel plans.

For information on current road conditions throughout the country please consult The Icelandic Road and Coastal Administration (Vegagerdin) website. This website can show you in real time the status of most roads in Iceland, color-coded by status.

Traffic Laws: You can use a valid U.S. driver’s license for up to 90 days while visiting Iceland, but you must be at least 17 years old to drive.

  • Icelandic law requires drivers to keep headlights on at all times.
  • Talking on cell phones while driving is prohibited, except when using a hands-free system, and is subject to a fine of 5,000 Icelandic Kronur (approximately $45).
  • Driving under the influence of alcohol is a serious offense in Iceland. Drivers can be charged with Driving Under the Influence with a blood alcohol level as low as .05%.
  • Unless otherwise posted, the speed limit is 50 km/h in urban areas and 30 km/h in residential areas.
  • In rural areas, the speed limit depends on the type of road: on dirt and gravel roads, the speed limit is 80 km/h (50 mph); on paved highways, the speed limit is 90 km/h (55 mph).
  • It is illegal to turn right on a red light.
  • In traffic circles, always yield to cars coming from the left/ the inside lane.
  • The use of seatbelts is mandatory in both the front and rear seats.
  • Children under the age of six must be secured in a size and weight appropriate car seat.
  • Drivers are held responsible for any passenger under the age of 15 not wearing a seatbelt.
  • No one shorter than 140 centimters, lighter than 40 kilograms (or 88 pounds), or younger than 12 years of age is allowed to ride in a front seat equipped with an airbag.

Public Transportation: Public transportation in Iceland is safe and reliable.

See our Road Safety page for more information.

Aviation Safety Oversight: The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has assessed the government of Iceland’s Civil Aviation Authority as being in compliance with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) aviation safety standards for oversight of Iceland’s air carrier operations. Further information may be found on the FAA’s safety assessment page.

Maritime Travel: Mariners planning travel to Iceland should also check for U.S. maritime advisories and alerts on the Maritime Administration website. Information may also be posted to the websites of the U.S. Coast Guard and the National Geospace Intelligence Agency (select “broadcast warnings”).

For additional travel information

International Parental Child Abduction

Review information about International Parental Child Abduction in Iceland. For additional IPCA-related information, please see the International Child Abduction Prevention and Return Act (ICAPRA) report.

Last Updated: November 13, 2023

Travel Advisory Levels

Assistance for U.S. Citizens

U.S. Embassy Reykjavik
Engjateigur 7
105 Reykjavik
Iceland
Telephone
+(354) 595-2200
Emergency
+(354) 595-2200
Fax
+(354) 562-9118

Iceland Map