Iceland & COVID-19

Wallace Travel Group your Iceland Specialist have been keeping up to date with the restrictions and requirements on travel to Iceland durning COVID-19. The following are the current updates we have recieved.

Visiting Iceland

Travel restrictions information for Iceland  Updated April 21st

Travel restrictions apply to all third-country nationals, i.e. persons who are neither citizens of EEA/EFTA nations, nor nationals of Andorra, Monaco, San Marino, or the Vatican—regardless of whether they require a visa or are permitted travel within the Schengen area without a visa. From April 6, exemptions for individiuals with valid certificates are in effect.

The same rules apply to all passengers irrespective of from where they are travelling: Measures to contain the spread of infections at the borders apply equally to all passengers coming from countries identified as risk zones by the Chief Epidemiologist.

Increased travel restrictions: The Minister of Interior will be authorized to ban unnecessary travel from countries identified as risk zones by the Chief Epidemiologist (14-day notifcation rate exceeding 1,000 cases per 100,000 population).

Stay in a quarantine facility: The authorities can decide that 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.  Furthermore, passengers coming from countries where the 14-day infection rate is 750-1,000 cases per 100,000 will, as a rule, be subject to stay in a quarantine facility. However, the authorities can make exemptions to the quarantine location, for example, for travellers who can demonstrate that they can quarantine in a facility that fulfils specific requirements. The conditions for a stay in a quarantine facility will be stipulated in regulation by the Minister of Health.

Testing and quarantine:  Everyone arriving to the country shall be tested at the borders as before, quarantine for five days and undergo a second test upon finishing. People are allowed to quarantine at home if certain requirements are fulfilled. Those who cannot quarantine at home and/or prefer to stay at a quarantine facility may stay there without charge.

Everyone traveling to Iceland must:

- Preregister electronically before departure from the place of origin.
- Submit a certificate of a negative PCR-test for COVID-19 (SARS-CoV-2)  before boarding an aircraft or ship to Iceland and again upon arrival. The negative test result must have been collected no more than 72 hours before departure (on the first leg of the journey).  Rapid antigen tests are not valid. The certificate must be submitted in either Icelandic, Norwegian, Swedish, Danish, or English. Certificates in other languages are not considered valid. The results of the test must be pre-recorded. If an arriving passenger has a vaccination certification for COVID-19 or a certification that proves a previous COVID-19 infection they are not required to present proof of a negative PCR test. 
- Take two tests to screen for the presence of COVID-19 after arrival in Iceland, with a mandatory 5-6 day quarantine between each test. Sampling is free of charge. 
- Complete quarantine with a negative result (no virus is found) following the second screening. 
- Travel directly to the quarantine station after arriving at the border stop, by airbus, taxi, rental car, or a private vehicle that has been left for you at the airport. Travelers are advised to stay overnight at a guesthouse near the border station if they are tired from their journey or in the case of unfavourable weather conditions.
- Persons who are unable to demonstrate an adequate isolation/quarantine location are required to stay in a quarantine facility. 
- We recommend that all travellers download the "RakningC-19" app. This app is intended, among other things, to communicate negative results from COVID-19 screenings and assists the health authorities with the tracing of infections when necessary.

Exemption from border measures for vaccinated individuals

Passengers who submit a vaccination certificate or a certificate of a prior infection will be required to undergo one test upon arrival to the country.  The requirement of testing individuals carrying a vaccination certificate, or a certificate of prior infection, is adopted due to indications that those individuals can pass on infections. They are required to stay in quarantine until a negative result from the test is obtained. The requirement is temporary and will be reviewed before the 1st of May.

As of April 6 it applies to everyone who can provide proof of a full vaccination with a vaccine that has been certified for use by the European Medical Agency as well as requirements defined by the Chief Epidemiologist of Iceland and Icelandic regulations. Certificates from the World Health Organization (WHO) (the International Certificate of Vaccination or the Carte Jaune/Yellow Card/CDC) are also accepted for vaccines the WHO has validated. Certificates may be in paper or electronic format.  

The exemption also applies to those who can provide valid proof of prior infection. Documentation on prior infections must be in accordance with the requirements defined by the Chief Epidemiologist. They will still need to undergo one test upon arrival. 

If a child travels with a parent/custodian who has a certificate of exemption at the border, it must then be tested at the border but does not have to go into quarantine. While waiting for the test results the child needs to follow the rules for quarantine. 

Certificates of vaccination accepted at the border for exemption of border measures due to COVID-19 (landlaeknir.is)  
Certificates regarding previous COVID-19 infection that are accepted at the border in Iceland for exemption of border measures (landlaeknir.is)  

 Measures to counter forged certificates: If the slightest suspicion arises about the authenticity of a certificate submitted by an individual, the individual in question shall be required to undergo two tests with and quarantine between the tests.

Children born 2005 and later 

Children born 2005 and later are exempt from the requirement of presenting a negative PCR certificate upon arrival. All children born 2005 and later must be tested at the border.  If a child travels with a parent/custodian who is required to go into quarantine, the child must also go into quarantine until a negative result for the parent/custodian is obtained.  If a child travels without a parent/custodian it must be tested at the border but does not have to go into quarantine. While waiting for the result the child needs to follow the rules for quarantine.

Easing of border restrictions phase 1 – valid from around June 1

After June 1, the border measures will be based on the regularly updated data published by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control. Countries will be risk-assessed intoblue,green, orange, and red zones according to the epidemiological situation. Considering Iceland's unique geographical position, the measures at the border will most likely be stricter than those prescribed by the EU, at least initially. 

Rule for passengers entering Iceland will be the following:  

Blue: No border restrictions 
Green: Bring a negative PCR from place of origin. Double screening with a five-day quarantine. Passenger presenting a valid proof of negative PCR-test result at the border will be exempt from a five-day quarantine and a second screening.  
Orange: Bring a negative PCR from place of origin. Double screening with a five-day quarantine. Passengers presenting a valid proof of negative PCR-test result at the border will be exempt from a five-day quarantine and a second screening.  
Red (and grey): Bring a negative PCR from place of origin. Double screening with a five-day quarantine. 

The classification into risk-categories will be based on EU recommendations:  
-14-day incidence rate .
-Positivity rate .
-Testing rate .

The risk assessment will be based on the following criteria:
-Green means that the 14-day incidence rate is below 25 per 100 thousand inhabitants, and less than 4% of tests are positive.  
-Orange means that the 14-day incidence rate is below 50 per 100 thousand inhabitants, but the positivity rate exceeds 4%; or the 14-day incidence rate is between 25 and 150 but the positivity rate is below 4%.  
-Red applies if the situation is more severe.  
-Grey applies to countries where information is insufficient or fewer than 300 tests are performed per 100 thousand each week.

All travellers are strongly encouraged to follow precautionary guidelines, such as frequent hand-washing and social distancing, and to respect regulations in place, including the 2-meter social distancing rule and using masks.

More details can be found here