Keeping Track of Expenses in Iceland
While everyone will travel differently, I want to share my travel expenses in Iceland to provide some sort of context for what your costs might add up to. While I don’t travel lavishly, I also know when to pay the extra cost. See below for a list of my expenses in Iceland, and if you’re interested in reading about my experience, click here! These costs are based on my travels from November 23rd through the 28th.
$472.67 – Roundtrip from Chicago
I traveled with IcelandAir, and if you haven’t been, you should check it out! They have a simulated aurora display on the overhead cabin bins which is a nice treat if you’re not able to visit Iceland during winter when the auroras are able to be seen.
I was able to find tickets this cheap through the use of Skyscanner, my favorite resource for flight shopping. If you’re not used to using search engines, you should start experimenting! They allow you to find the cheapest flights around!
$650.93 – Blue Car Rental
$69.42 – Gas
$18.20 – Toll
My car rental price was mainly expensive because I took out all the insurances available. After researching, it seemed that everybody recommended getting the gravel insurance as well as the sand & ash insurance. Iceland can be brutal, you don’t want to mess around! People have gotten their doors ripped off from fierce winds. Skimping on insurances might result in you paying a mind-boggling fee by the end of your trip.
Another reason it was expensive is because my brother and his friend stayed an additional two days. So $600 for 6 days, including insurance isn’t really terrible – especially if you’re splitting the cost with others!
My companions also paid for some of the gas, so you might want to double or triple the gas costs.
$73.39 – Groceries, dinner, sandwiches
I will be very honest and say that I didn’t take advantage of much Icelandic cuisine. Before I met up with my brother, I was eating gas station sandwiches, hot dogs, and skyr (you have to try it!). Keep in mind, in some parts of Iceland, gas stations aren’t open in the middle of the night. On my drive from Vík to Jökulsárlón I was kicking myself for not getting groceries beforehand.
$13.70 – Iceland Phallological Museum (penis museum)
$3.64 – Kerið crater fee
Kerið is the only natural attraction we had to pay money for while in Iceland, but what’s $3? Totally worth it, and we witnessed a beautiful sunrise as well.
$203.57 – proper clothes
You might have the proper gear before heading to Iceland, but I definitely did not. I invested in a warm, waterproof jacket with a shell lining, hiking shoes, a headlamp, snow pants, and gloves – all from Sierra Trading Post’s website. They came in handy. While my brother and his friend got soaked near the larger waterfalls, I stayed dry.
$114.94 – Hostels in Vík
I stayed in Vík for two nights, but also got an AirBnB in both Ólafsvík (Snaefellsnes peninsula) and Reykjavik. My brother covered those costs to pay me back for the car, so I would add another $100 for accommodation.
$184.87 – Vík Wool Factory
If you make it to Vík while in Iceland, which you should, you have to check out this wool factory. You’re able to see how they use the wool to make clothes, blankets, etc., and you’re able to buy items from there as well. I bought myself a wool sweater and it kept me warm this past winter in Chicago.
ALSO, if you DO buy any kind of souvenirs in Iceland, you’re able to fill out forms at the airport to get a tax refund during tax season. I got $20 back from buying my sweater! Just be sure to hold on to your receipts.
That price might seem like a lot, but that’s prep to finish. Taking out the flight costs and the gear purchased before the trip, it would be $1,129.09. Not bad at all! Especially for the trip of a lifetime.
I hope this list helps you figure out how much you might be spending to get to and from Iceland! Again, everyone travels differently and this is just my experience, but I find it helpful to get some kind of idea from someone else. Check out my post on Iceland here for more information!