Due to the current worldwide situation of the famous coronavirus (COVID-19), many travellers are asking us how the current situation is in Iceland. In this article we reveal how the Nordic country is living the coronavirus situation.
AMAROK ADVENTURES has recently joined the Clean&Safe project from the Icelandic Tourist Board with which we intend to guarantee the safety of our travelers during the COVID-19 pandemic situation, committing to receive our customers in a responsible way so that they feel safe while creating good memories of their trip.
Iceland & the Coronavirus (COVID-19). Can I travel?
We have stopped publishing the current updates. Please visit the link above.
Update July 20th 2021
MANDATORY test for vaccinated travellers before arrival
- As of 27 July, all vaccinated persons and those that can present a certificate of a prior COVID-19 infection must present a negative PCR or antigen (rapid) test that is no more than 72 hours old before departure to Iceland. This decision by the Minister of Health is based on recommendations from the Chief Epidemiologist.
- Unvaccinated individuals will continue to be required to present negative PCR test results no more than 72 hours old and undergo double PCR screening with a five-day quarantine in between.
- Children born in 2005 or later will continue to be exempted from all border measures.
Update June 14th 2021
Border screening of vaccinated travellers stopped after July 2st
The Minister of Health has decided, in keeping with the recommendation of the Chief Epidemiologist, to retain the current measures to contain the spread of infections at the borders until July 1st. After that time, the measures will be relaxed by cease the screening of those who present a certificate of vaccination or prior infection with COVID-19. Additionally, children will no longer be screened for COVID-19 upon arrival in Iceland.
Update May 1st 2021
The current regulation for international travellers establishes as follows:
- People who present a vaccination certificate or a certificate of previous infection are allowed to enter the country.
- Unnecessary traveling of people who don´t live in Iceland, from high-risk countries is banned.
Unnecessary travelling from high-risk countries is banned. The ban does not apply to foreigners residing in Iceland, including on the basis of a residence permit or other kind of right of residence, family members of Icelandic citizens and foreign nationals residing in Iceland, foreigners who are in long-term domestic partnerships with Icelandic citizens or foreign nationals who are legally residing in Iceland, foreign nationals who are able to show a certificate of vaccination or a certificate that they have had COVID-19 and are no longer infectious. Further information on exceptions from the ban can be found here. If you are travelling from a high-risk country but exempt from the ban, you can get forms for exemption on the National Commissioner Office’s website.
Update April 20th 2021
Temporary introduction of stricter measures in Iceland’s border
The Government has announced temporary border measures due to the recent domestic outbreak of COVID-19 because of quarantine violations in the last weeks.
From April 22 to May 31, passengers arriving from countries where the 14-day infection rate exceeds 1,000 cases per 100,000 population need to stay in a quarantine facility.
Travellers coming from countries where the 14-day infection rate is 750-1,000 cases per 100,000 will, are subject to stay in a quarantine facility. However, the authorities can make exemptions to the quarantine location. Check here the requirements.
The rules regarding PCR test & vaccination certificates remain unchanged until June 1st.
Update March 24th 2021
Stricter COVID19 measures at the border will start on April 1st and expire at the end of the month.
Children, who have been exempt from border measures until now, will be tested and required to quarantine (with some exceptions, see below). Travellers who have stayed in dark-red areas, in the previous 14 days, will be required to stay in quarantine facilities for the duration of the 5 day quarantine between tests. In case of a positive test, travelers will be required to stay in isolation in managed quarantine facilities.
After a small breakout, new restrictions have been applied like limiting the gathering to 10 people. Activities of many types involving more than 10 participants will be prohibited. Swimming pools and bathing establishments are closed.
Fitness and body-building centres are closed. Night clubs, bars, gaming establishments and gambling machines are closed. Restaurants may stay open until 10 p.m., with a maximum of 20 guests in each separate area; details of all guests shall be registered and they shall be served when seated in numbered seats. Alcoholic beverages shall be served to seated customers. New guests may be admitted until 9 p.m. See more clicking here
The new rules will remain in force for 3 weeks.
Update March 16th 2021
From 18 March, everyone who can provide proof of a certified vaccination will be allowed to travel to Iceland without being subject to PCR testing and quarantine. Visitors who can provide valid evidence of prior infection are also exempt from border measures. This exemption will apply to citizens outside the Schengen area, including the UK and USA.
Update February 17th 2021
New border measures will come into force on February 19 which requires all arriving passengers in Iceland to present a negative PCR taken within 72 hours of their time of departure to Iceland.
This is in addition to the current system of double screening, that also requires all arriving passengers to submit to a PCR test upon arrival, followed by a 5-day quarantine and a second PCR test. Those who provide valid proof of having been vaccinated against COVID-19 are not required to provide a PCR-test prior to boarding and are also exempt from screening and quarantine measures at the border. The same applies to those who can provide proof of prior infection.
Update January 15th 2021
Health Minister Svandís Svavarsdóttir announced today new regulations that oblige all people entering the country to take two COVID-19 tests with five days of quarantine in between. Arriving passengers can no longer choose 14 days of home quarantine instead of undergoing the tests.
The new rules will remain in effect until April 30, at which time a new, much more flexible system will be used.
Update January 8th 2021
Relaxations to the restrictions on gathering sizes to apply from January 13th.
Meetings will be limited to a maximum of 20 people and health and fitness centers and ski facilities may reopen. Sports activities for both children and adults will be allowed, subject to certain restrictions; the same will apply to sports competitions, which will take place without spectators. These new measures (among others) are based on the recommendations of the chief epidemiologist. The new rules will go into effect on January 13 and will remain in effect (subject to review) until February 17.
Taking effect on December 10th 2020, The Minister of Health has decided to relax some COVID19 measures. Most of them affecting to restrictions on the size of gatherings, and the new rules will remain in force until 12 January 2021.
Principal changes to the restrictions on gatherings
- Size restrictions: With certain exceptions, a maximum of 10 persons continues to apply.
- Children: The provisions on maximum size of gatherings, social distancing and the obligation to use face-masks do not apply to children born in or after 2005.
- Shops: All shops may admit 5 customers for every 10 m² of their floor area, up to a maximum of 100 persons.
- Restaurants: Up to 15 customers may be admitted to each restricted area. Premises may stay open until 10 p.m. but may not admit new guests after 9 p.m.
- Swimming pools and bathing facilities: These may be opened to up to 50% of the maximum number of guests permitted under their operating licences.
- And more. Check all the new measures clicking here.
Period of validity: The changes listed above shall be in force from 10 December 2020 until 12 January 2021.
The Minister of Health has decided that testing of travellers for COVID-19 at Iceland’s borders is to be free of charge, on a temporary basis, from 1 December 2020 until 31 January 2021. This is in line with recommendations from the Chief Epidemiologist.
The Minister of Health has approved recommendations by the Chief Epidemiologist for a cautious relaxation of some of the restrictions on gatherings in response to the spread of COVID-19. The changes involved will take effect on 18 November 2020. The main changes are that sporting, youth and leisure activities for children in pre-schools (kindergartens) and compulsory junior schools (to age 16) will be permitted once again. In upper-secondary schools, the number of persons permitted to gather in one space will be raised to 25. Services of various types which entail physical contact or close proximity will be permitted again. The general limit on the size of gatherings to 10 persons will continue. It is envisaged that further relaxation of the restrictions will be possible at the beginning of December.
The new rules that go into effect today, October 20, will be in effect until November 9.
For the most part, the rules are an extension of those already imposed, but in some cases stricter rules will apply to the entire country. The rules in the capital area are still stricter than elsewhere when it comes to sports. The most important ones are:
- The 2-meter social distancing rule will apply nationwide, as will the requirement to wear face masks where that rule cannot be respected, such as in stores.
- The maximum number of people that can meet at the same time is still 20.
- The Department of Civil Protection and Emergencies urges people residing in Reykjavík not to travel outside the area for the next two to three weeks.
Most of the recently confirmed COVID-19 cases have been concentrated in the capital area. Therefore, in an effort to prevent further spread of the disease, the Department emphasizes the importance of not leaving the city.
In order to avoid misunderstandings when reading this post, we have deleted all the previous updates. You can check all the updates by date in this link.
Icelandic government’s answer. What is the COVID-19?
COVID-19 or SARS-CoV-2 are a family of viruses that cause a number of diseases in humans and animals. Depending on the strain, they can cause the common cold, severe pneumonia, or more serious and deadly effects.
Goals and actions of the Icelandic government.
The National Director of Epidemiology and the Department of Civil Defense of the General Directorate of the Icelandic Police have declared the highest level of alert – a national emergency – to the virus outbreak, as specified in the National Plan in Response to a Pandemic. The declaration of national emergency, however, has no impact on the daily life of the population.
In this way, entertainment venues such as restaurants, bars or swimming pools will be closed. Supermarkets, on the other hand, will not allow access to more than 100 customers simultaneously.
May I travel soon?
The answer to this question remains unknown to this day. If your trip is planned for the next few months, we recommend that you do not cancel and let your travel agency advise you. In Amarok Adventures, we choose to postpone all those trips that cannot be made due to the presence of the virus. We encourage those travelers with questions about their trips in the following months to contact us.