Information regarding COVID-19
On June 15th, Iceland’s boarders reopened after months of restrictions due to COVID-19. It is a timely step in the success story that is Iceland's fight against the disease. Safety is and always has been a top priority at Reykjavik Excursions and we feel confident about the government's safety measures as well as our own. Read on if you have questions or concerns regarding the Covid-19 situation in Iceland.
Is it safe to travel to Iceland?
Iceland has tested nearly 20% of the entire population and has used quarantine measures and mild restrictions on large public gatherings to great effect. Icelanders have been very cautious and taken extra care to social distance, using hand sanitizers religiously and contacting health services and quarantining themselves on any suspicion they may have come into contact with the virus. And while the economy has suffered greatly, human lives were and still are the top priority. Reopening the boarders on June 15th was by all accounts a timely and safe step. Iceland is an island with one international airport so boarder control is in many ways a simpler task here. Government measures include testing all incoming passengers and using a special tracing app to track the virus. As a result we can all feel safe roaming around this beautiful island without restrictions. Check out this list of airlines now flying to Iceland.
How has Iceland fared in the fight against Covid-19?
The fight has been led by medical professionals and police with a special task force to trace those that have come into contact with infected individuals. A two-week quarantine for anyone who came into contact with someone infected meant that medical resources were kept available for those who fell ill and health services could handle the load. A special Covid-19 ward admitted people with more serious symptoms early, a special medical team checked in on everyone who tested positive via telephone daily, and the ICU wards were reinforced with staff, equipment and beds. As a result, the recovery rate was incredibly high and general support of government measures has been overwhelming. For more information, read our special blog about Iceland’s response to Covid 19.
What happens at the airport when I arrive in Iceland?
You get tested.
Passengers coming to Iceland need to fill out this pre-registration form before departing to Iceland. The registration asks for contact information and address during your stay as well as a declaration of health. All passengers are required to wear a face mask during their flight. Upon arrival in Iceland, passengers are given an option to quarantine for two weeks or get tested for COVID-19 at the airport. It's a simple swab test and the results are sent via text message within 24 hours, usually within just a few hours. Those who test positive are offered further tests, such as an antibody test, to determine if the infection is active. In cases where a foreign national tests positive with an active infection they are required to self-isolate. If they do not have access to a suitable location to self-isolate, they are given accommodation at an isolation center at no cost to them. Please note that medical examinations, treatments and medical supervision of notifiable diseases, including COVID-19, is of no cost to the patient. As of July 1st, passengers do however pay for the elective test at the boarder. The cost of the test is 15,000 ISK (~108 USD / ~86 GBP). Children born in 2005 or later are exempt from preregistration, testing and quarantine.
Why travel to Iceland at this point?
Enjoy this beautiful island safely.
There are a number of reasons why Iceland is a real dream destination in 2020. The successful response to the COVID-19 pandemic is just one of them as well as the country's strong and able infrastructure. Another reason is that while you are required to adhere to either testing or quarantine upon arrival, you are free to roam around this glorious island with minimal restrictions once you get through the screening process, knowing that everyone you meet has been subject to the same rules. An added bonus is that global travel is still a fraction of what it normally is so you might find yourself standing in an epic, awe-inspiring landscape like the black beach of Reynisfjara, completely alone. If you want the most popular tourist attractions in Iceland all to yourself, now is the time.
What is Reykjavik Excursions doing to prevent the spread of Covid-19?
Everything we can think of.
Our passengers’ and employees’ safety is our top priority and we take this pandemic very seriously. Rest assured that every measure is taken to ensure safety on board our coaches and on our tours.
• Our coaches will be sanitised before each tour and limited to an 80% load to respect social distancing between strangers on board.
• Our guests will have access to hand sanitisers on all coaches and access to sinks to wash hands at every stop.
• Our drivers will sanitise the surfaces that passengers tend to touch when they exit and board on every stop.
• Our drivers will wear gloves when handling luggage.
• Our guides and front-line staff will wear gloves when receiving vouchers and handling customers’ credit cards.
• Sanitising kits will be made available for purchase, including masks, gloves, and travel-sized hand sanitisers.
If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us at [email protected]
For further information, statistics and directions, check out Iceland's official Covid-19 website.