Iceland is the land of volcanoes, northern lights, sheep and (little known fact) extremely high prices. It has been touted as being one of the least budget-friendly countries in the entire world. For some, this makes the idea of visiting this country even more appealing.

After all, figuring out how you can visit an expensive city without overspending is fun. Regardless of if you are planning Iceland day trips, or a month-long excursion, you will find the money-saving tips here appealing and useful.

  1. Purchase a Bus Pass

Are you traveling to Iceland during the summer months? If so, you can purchase a countrywide bus pass for approximately $323 USD. This is a great option if you want to avoid hitchhiking. If you are only staying for a day, this may not be the most economical option, but for those staying several weeks, it is extremely affordable.

If you are traveling to Iceland during winter, then many of the bus routes are going to be closed, which means the pass won’t be offered.

  1. Eat the Hotdogs

If you plan to eat out, then eat at the hotdog and sandwich stalls located throughout the cities. This is where you will find the cheapest food in the country.

The hotdogs cost approximately $3.50 USD, and sandwiches run about $13 USD, or $17 USD if you add a drink. It’s important to note, Icelanders have an obsession with hotdogs, which means if the city has more than one road, then you are going to find a hotdog stand (or two!).

  1. Avoid Drinking

Due to the high taxes in the country, it can be extremely costly to drink in Iceland. Some of the average alcohol prices (in USD) for the country include:

  • Shots: $8
  • Beer: $10
  • Wine: $12
  • Bottle of wine at the restaurant: $30
  • Bottle of wine at the store: $20

If you avoid drinking, you are going to find your budget will be fine. If you decide that you want to splurge, then do so in Reykjavik, since the nightlife here is legendary. Other than that, avoid partaking at all costs.

You will not only save money, but you’ll feel better and be able to better enjoy the sites and experiences the country has to offer. After all, hiking a volcano with a hangover doesn’t exactly sound like fun!

  1. Camp

Camping is available virtually everywhere in the country. You can spend about $14 USD a night and camp in certain, designated campgrounds. There are some hostels that will allow you to put some tents up, as well.

Keep in mind though, camping is going to be much more affordable than staying at a hostel. Just bring along your own gear and a sleeping bag to ensure you are comfortable. If you really want to save money on your accommodations in Iceland, you can also opt to wild camp, which means you can avoid fees altogether. This is legal as long as there’s no sign posted saying you can’t.


  1. Bring Along a Water Bottle

Iceland has some of the cleanest and most drinkable water in the entire world. However, purchasing a plastic bottle of water is going to set you back about $3 USD each. As a result, you should bring along a metal water bottle and then refill it from a tap.

This will not only save you money, but it will also help the environment. There’s no reason to purchase water while in Iceland.

If you are planning to visit Iceland, use the tips here to save money and make the most of your trip.