Know before you go

How To Visit Iceland On A Budget

Iceland is famous for being known as one of the most expensive countries in the world…It is also famous for being out of this world beautiful, and looking like a different planet. I’m here to tell you that yes, it is possible to visit on a budget! Iceland was on the top of my bucket list for the past 6 years, and this year I was thinking how expensive really is Iceland? Of course I did lots of research and planning, but I finally decided to make my dream trip happen… on a budget, and I’m happy to share my tips with you as well!

As I live in London now, I am used to the prices being more expensive than most places I visit, so the thought that Iceland was extravagantly more expensive than London was difficult to wrap my head around, so I did my own research and decided to see for my self.

When choosing a place to stay the average hotel and airbnb prices seemed cheaper than London, so at that point I was only concerned about the food prices and gas prices. We decided that we were going to cook most of our meals, and that would cut out a big expense.

When we got to Iceland, it honestly was not that much more expensive than London. Overall, I’d say you can definitely visit Iceland on a budget, and I’m going to give you five tips to help you visit Iceland as well, by sticking to your budget.

1.Travel With Others

Iceland is NOT a place I would want to travel to solo, even if I had no budget. This is because Iceland is such an adventure based destination, and I honestly just wouldn’t feel comfortable being alone incase something happened, such as even twisting my ankle while hiking… the thought of being stranded & alone in a foreign country is not exactly my favourite concept.

By travelling with others, not only is it safer but you can easily cut your budget by 50% or more. This is because you can split the cost of an airbnb, car rental, and gas! Trust me, if you go with 3 others, and use my other tips, you likely won’t see Iceland as that expensive.

2. Rent A Car/ Visit The Sights Yourself

It may seem daunting to go see the sights yourself, especially with the tours so readily available and easy to book, but in reality it is quite easy to see things yourself. If you rent a car and split the cost between a few other people, you will find that you will save SO much, compared to if you all booked multiple tours. Iceland is also quite easy to navigate as the ring road highway that wraps around the country is really straightforward, and other than the snow in the winter it is extremely easy to follow. I would highly recommend you calculate the cost of everything you want to go see, and compare it to the cost of the rental car & estimated gas, tot hen make your decision. Cost aside, another bonus from renting your own car is that you can do multiple stops along the way to your destination, and also stay at the destination for as long/ little as you want, so it definitely gives you much more freedom.

3. Cook Your Own Food

You have probably heard that restaurants in Iceland are really expensive, the one I went to was on average 17E per meal which I found to be pretty average for the Scandinavian countries. A great way to save money though is by cooking your own food, which I definitely recommend while you are in Iceland. This is even better if you are in a group, so that you can all share meals.

4. Book Your Accomodation Early

Accommodation in Iceland get booked up quite quickly, especially during the peak seasons; I would highly recommend you book yours early so that you can get one in a decent locations and at a good price.

5. Don’t Travel In Peak Season

This goes for pretty much every destination in the world, but expect prices to be slightly higher for tours, accommodation, restaurants, flights, and car rentals in the peak seasons. The thing about Iceland is that you can only see certain things at certain times of the year such as the northern lights, so of course if this is a priority to you it may not effect your timing too much.

In conclusion, Iceland is definitely on the pricey side but I definitely would say it is much more reasonable than its given stereotype. If Iceland is one of your dream destinations but the pricing is holding you back, I would highly recommend you plan everything out because you will likely be surprised that it can definitely be quite doable with small changes. I also acknowledge that many people will want to travel and experience the local food and everything unique to that given country/city, however my personal perspective when travelling is that I would rather experience the destination and be on a tight budget rather than not experiencing it at all… of course do what works for you, and I wish you the best time!

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