Country-specific safety information
As a country located in Europe according to allcountrylist, Iceland is part of the sub-polar climatic zone. Particularly during longer stays in the great outdoors, sudden changes in the weather and temperature drops pose considerable dangers that are very often underestimated. Visitors to Iceland should therefore prepare carefully for their stay, familiarize themselves with the natural and climatic conditions and bring suitable clothing / equipment with them.
Missing or inadequate travel preparation can lead to time-consuming searches in an emergency. The use of search parties, if necessary also with helicopters, regularly causes great financial and personnel expenditure.
Individual travelers in particular are therefore urgently asked to report regularly and reliably to contact persons and to notify any deviations from the travel or hiking routes that have been announced, even if they have booked accommodation at the next destination.
On the multilingual website External Link, opens in a new window www.safetravel.is or External Link, opens in a new window www.icesar.com of the Icelandic rescue service ICE-SAR, general safety information can also be accessed. Travelers can also enter the intended travel or hiking route there. Unannounced deviations cause the deployment of rescue workers. Warnings from Icelandic authorities are sent via SMS to connected cell phones within a certain radius of an area that is to be evacuated, for example. Holidaymakers should therefore ensure that their cell phones are always charged and switched on so that they can receive such messages if necessary. Occasional dead spots and thus restricted accessibility cannot be ruled out.
1 Icelandic krona (islensk króna) = 100 aurars. Currency abbreviations: IKr, ISK (ISO code). Banknotes are in circulation to the denomination of 10,000, 5000, 2000, 1000 and 500 IKr. Coins in denominations of 100, 50, 10, 5 and 1 IKr. Aurar have no meaning in practice since 2003.
Visa, Europay / MasterCard, Diners Club and American Express are accepted by most institutions. Details from the issuer of the credit card in question. Card payment is widespread and a signature is usually not required for small amounts.
EC / Maestro card / Sparcard
With the EC / Maestro card and PIN number, cash in the local currency can be withdrawn from ATMs throughout Europe. In many European countries it is also possible to pay with the ec / Maestro card in shops. Cards with the Cirrus or Maestro symbol are accepted in Europe and worldwide. Further information from banks and credit institutes. The same applies to the German Sparcard, the successor to the postal savings book as a means of procuring currency in other European countries. Cash can be withdrawn from European ATMs with the plus logo using a Sparcard and PIN number. Further details from all Postbank branches.
Attention: Travelers who pay with their bank card abroad and want to withdraw money should find out about the possibilities of using their card from their bank before starting their journey.
Bank opening times
Mon-Fri 9.15am-4pm; Banks at Keflavík Airport and Reykjavík also last longer.
Foreign exchange regulations
No restrictions on the import and export of local currency up to a maximum of 8,000 kroner. Unrestricted import of foreign currencies, from € 10,000 declaration obligation. Export of foreign currencies up to the amount declared, minus the exchange amounts.
The best exchange rate is available on site. Currency can be exchanged and returned at the airport and on the ferry.
The official language is Icelandic. English, Danish or German are widely spoken. English is spoken by most Icelanders and, like Danish, is taught in schools.
There are night clubs and cinemas in the larger towns. The National Theater and the Theater in Reykjavík close in summer, but during the holiday season a light entertainment program is presented in English, the White Nights (a mixture of Old Norse tales, sagas and folk songs, Internet www.lightnights.com).
The Icelandic Symphony Orchestra (www.sinfonia.is) gives a concert every two weeks during the winter season (September to June) in the University’s Auditorium Maximum. The lively music scene in Iceland has produced internationally successful singers such as Björk and Sigur Rós.
The National Concert and Conference Center of Iceland in Reykjavík, Harpa, opened in May 2011 (Internet: http://en.harpa.is/). The impressive building, which was designed by renowned Scandinavian architects and the internationally acclaimed artist Ólafur Elíasson, is located on the port area. The center has a modern concert hall and is the new home of the Icelandic Symphony Orchestra.
Area code +354 Area (square km) 103,000 Population 331,918 Population density (per square km) 3 Population in 2015 Member of the EU No main emergency number 112