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Uber is not currently available in Iceland. Visitors looking for the convenience of Uber for their transportation needs will need to explore alternative options. Thankfully, Iceland offers a variety of other transport methods suitable for tourists, including car rentals, taxis, and an efficient public transportation system. The absence of Uber has encouraged visitors to delve into these local alternatives, providing a unique opportunity to experience the country more authentically.

Iceland, a land of fire and ice, attracts visitors from all around the globe with its stunning natural wonders, from the mesmerizing Northern Lights to its volcanic landscapes, 10,000 waterfalls and thermal hot springs.

While the country may not offer Uber services, it boasts a comprehensive range of transportation options that ensure travelers can navigate the island with ease. This guide aims to provide a detailed overview of transportation in Iceland, helping visitors plan their travels and make the most of their Icelandic adventure. Whether you’re exploring the capital city of Reykjavik, venturing to the remote corners of the island, or anything in between, understanding your transport options is key to a smooth and enjoyable journey.

Is There Uber in Iceland?

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Unlike many other parts of Europe, Uber is not present in Iceland, and the reasons behind its absence are multifaceted. Primarily, the country’s stringent transportation laws and the emphasis on preserving local businesses have limited the entry of international ridesharing companies. Additionally, Iceland’s relatively small population and the concentrated nature of its tourism industry mean that traditional transportation services efficiently meet the demand. The lack of Uber in Iceland encourages visitors to engage with local transportation options, which range from well-established taxi services to comprehensive public transportation and car rentals. This situation reflects Iceland’s broader approach to tourism and commerce, where there’s a strong focus on sustainability and support for local enterprises. For travelers, this means planning transportation through other means, which can lead to a more authentic Icelandic experience and a deeper understanding of the local way of life.

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Are There Other Ride-sharing Apps in Iceland?

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mage from FreePik

In Iceland, while Uber and similar large international ride-sharing apps are not available, the country does have its own version of a taxi app that caters to both locals and tourists. Hreyfill, one of the largest taxi companies in Iceland, offers an app-based service for booking rides. Although the app is sometimes buggy, it provides much of the same functionality as Uber, although it connects passengers with licensed taxis rather than private drivers.

To use Hreyfill, you may need to purchase an Icelandic SIM card (available from convenience stores in the Reykjavik Airport or retailers in Reykjavik) although some users have reported success using the app with an international number.

The app can be downloaded from both the Apple App Store and Google Play Store, making it easily accessible for visitors with smartphones.

Download the Hreyfill App here

This local taxi hailing app offer a seamless way to navigate the country, ensuring visitors can find transportation options that suit their needs, from quick trips across town to longer journeys exploring Iceland’s natural beauty.

Taxis in Iceland

ride share taxi app with taxi with backdrop of a city
Image by Freepik

Taxis in Iceland provide a convenient and reliable mode of transportation, particularly in urban areas like Reykjavik and Akureyri, and are a viable alternative in the absence of ride-sharing apps. They can be especially useful for travelers arriving late at night or those needing a direct route to a specific destination.

Are Taxis Cheap in Iceland?

Taxis in Iceland are known for their reliability and safety, but they can be expensive compared to taxi services in other countries. The high cost is partly due to Iceland’s overall higher living expenses and the quality of service provided. Despite this, taxis offer comfort and convenience, particularly in less accessible areas or during inclement weather.

How Much Do Taxis Cost in Iceland?

Taxi fares in Iceland are regulated and metered, ensuring transparency and fairness in pricing. The initial charge (base fare) typically starts around 700 ISK (approximately 5 USD), with a per-kilometer rate of about 250 ISK to 300 ISK (around 2 to 2.4 USD) thereafter. Prices can vary slightly depending on the taxi company, time of day, and specific location within Iceland.

A short ride in downtown Reykjavik might cost ISK 2000 – 3000 ($15 – $20 USD) while the standard cost of a taxi from Keflavik Airport to Reykjavik city centre is around ISK 17,000 ($120 USD).

Do Taxis Accept Credit Cards in Iceland?

Yes, taxis in Iceland generally accept credit cards. This is consistent with the country’s broader move towards cashless transactions, making it convenient for tourists who prefer not to carry large amounts of cash.

How Do I Catch a Taxi in Iceland?

Catching a taxi in Iceland is straightforward. You can hail a taxi on the street in larger towns and cities, find them at designated taxi stands, or book one through a taxi company’s app or by phone. Hotels and restaurants can also call a taxi for you.

Are There Taxi Apps in Iceland?

Yes, as mentioned earlier, apps like Hreyfillserve as the local equivalent to ride-sharing and taxi-hailing apps in iceland, allowing users to book taxis directly from their smartphones. These apps enhance the convenience of using taxis in Iceland, offering features like fare estimates, trip tracking, and easy payment options.

Are Taxis Safe in Iceland?

Taxis in Iceland are known for their high safety standards. Drivers are licensed, and vehicles are regularly inspected, ensuring a safe and comfortable experience for passengers.

Common Taxi Scams in Iceland?

Taxi scams are rare in Iceland, thanks to strict regulations and the professionalism of licensed taxi drivers. However, as with travel in any country, it’s wise to be aware of your surroundings and ensure the taxi meter is running to avoid any potential misunderstandings.

Do I Need to Tip Taxi Drivers in Iceland?

Tipping is not a common practice in Iceland, and this extends to taxi drivers. The fare on the meter is considered sufficient, but you can round up to the nearest whole amount if you wish to show appreciation for exceptional service.

Car Rentals in Iceland

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Image from FreePik

If you are planning to travel a lot throughout the country, car rentals in Iceland offer an economical and convenient option for travelers, providing the freedom to explore the country’s stunning landscapes at their own pace. Given the absence of Uber and the high cost of taxis, renting a car can be a cost-effective alternative, especially for groups or those planning to visit remote areas.

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Advantages of Car Rentals in Iceland

  • Freedom and Flexibility: Renting a car allows you to create your itinerary, visit off-the-beaten-path locations, and spend as much or as little time as you wish at each site.
  • Cost-Effective for Groups: Renting a car can be more economical for families or groups traveling together than using taxis or public transport for every trip.
  • Convenience: With a rental car, you have the convenience of traveling at times that suit you without waiting for taxis or buses.

How to Rent a Car in Iceland

  • Eligibility Requirements: Drivers must usually be at least 20 years old (25 for certain vehicle types) and have a valid driver’s license which they have held for at least one year. An International Driving Permit is recommended but not always required if the license is in English.
  • Choosing a Rental Company: Iceland hosts a range of international and local car rental companies. Prices and available vehicle types vary, so it’s worth shopping around to find the best deal.
  • Insurance: Basic insurance is typically included, but given Iceland’s unique driving conditions (such as gravel roads and river crossings in the Highlands), additional insurance like gravel protection, sand and ash protection, and river crossing insurance might be recommended.
  • Driving in Iceland: Familiarize yourself with local driving laws and conditions. Be especially cautious of rapidly changing weather, gravel roads, and the lack of guardrails in rural areas.

Cost of Car Rentals in Iceland

The cost of renting a car in Iceland can vary widely depending on the type of vehicle, rental duration, and time of year. On average, you can expect to pay from around 15,000 ISK (approximately 120 USD) per day for a small car to 40,000 ISK (approximately $300 USD) or more per day for a 4×4 vehicle or van. Shopping around and booking in advance can help secure the best rates.

Other Ways to Get Around Iceland

Bus and bus driver at a bus stop

Beyond taxis and car rentals, Iceland offers a variety of transportation modes suited to different needs and preferences. Explore the island’s beauty through these alternatives.

Public Transportation in Iceland

  • Buses in Reykjavik: The city’s public bus system, Strætó, operates extensive routes within Reykjavik and to neighboring towns. It’s an affordable and reliable way to navigate the capital and its suburbs.
    • Cost: Single tickets start at 470 ISK ($3.40 USD)
    • How to Buy Tickets: Tickets can be bought through the Klappið app or on board from the bus driver, beware drivers do not give change
    • More Information: Schedule and route information can be found at Strætó
  • Intercity Buses: For longer distances, Strætó Provincial operates routes that connect Reykjavik with major towns and tourist attractions across Iceland. These buses are a practical option for reaching destinations like the Golden Circle, Akureyri, and others without a car.
    • Cost: Depending on how many ‘zones’ your route travels (1 – 22), provincial buses can cost between 500 and 12,500 ISK ($4 – $90 USD).
    • How to Buy Tickets: Tickets can be bought onboard and drivers do give change on the provincial buses.
    • More Inforamtion: Strætó Provincial Buses,

Cycling in Iceland

  • Biking: Iceland’s stunning landscapes make it a fantastic place for cycling. Reykjavik and larger towns offer bike rentals, and there are dedicated cycling paths in urban areas. For the adventurous, touring the country by bike is possible during the summer months, but prepare for challenging terrains and changing weather conditions.


  • Hitchhiking: Known for its safety and friendly locals, hitchhiking is a common and often successful way to travel around Iceland, especially in rural areas. However, always exercise caution and use common sense when hitchhiking.

Organized Tours

  • Tours: Organized tours are an excellent way to explore Iceland, offering the convenience of pre-planned itineraries and the knowledge of local guides. Options range from day trips to multi-day excursions, covering natural wonders, cultural sites, and adventure activities.

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How Do I Get from the Reykjavik International Airport to the City Center?

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Keflavík International Airport is the main gateway to Iceland, located about 50 km (31 miles) southwest of Reykjavik. Here are the main options for getting to the city center upon your arrival:

Private Transfer

  • Private Transfer Services: Available for booking in advance, private transfers offer a direct and comfortable way to reach your destination in Reykjavik. Prices vary based on the service provider and the number of passengers.

🔍 Search, Compare and Book Private Transfers With TripAdvisor

Private Bus Services

  • Airport Bus: Companies like Flybus and Airport Direct operate regular, reliable bus services between the airport and Reykjavik, with the option to drop off passengers at specific hotels or the central bus station.
    • Cost: Prices are competitive around 4,000 ISK ($30 USD) to reach the city centre.
    • How to Use: Book tickets in advance online, the bus stop is right outside the terminal.

Public Transport

  • Public Bus: Route 55 on the city’s public bus system, Strætó, runs between the Reykjavik Airport and the city. It’s a reliable and slightly more affordable way to navigate the capital and its suburbs.
  • Cost: Single tickets start at 2200 ISK ($16 USD)
  • How to Buy Tickets: Tickets can be bought using cash or credit/debit card.
  • More Information: Schedule and route information can be found at Strætó.


  • Taxi: Taxis are readily available at the airport, offering a convenient but more expensive option to reach the city center or other destinations within Iceland. As mentioned a taxi from Keflavik Airport to Reykjavik city centre is around ISK 17,000 ($120 USD).

How to Travel Between Cities in the Region

Three passengers on a train reading books and tablets

Exploring Iceland’s diverse regions can be an adventure in itself. Here’s how to travel between cities and towns across the country:

  • Intercity Buses: Reliable and covering most major destinations, bus services like Strætó (for shorter distances) and Strætó Provincial (for longer distances) are a practical option. Private operators also offer bus tours to reach remote destinations in Iceland.
  • Car Rentals: Offering flexibility to explore at your own pace, renting a car is ideal for those wishing to venture beyond the main tourist routes.

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  • Domestic Flights: For distant regions, such as the Westfjords or the North, consider domestic flights to save time. Air Iceland Connect and Eagle Air operate flights from Reykjavik to several locations across Iceland.

Is There Uber Eats in Iceland?

Cartoon image of a man and his phone showing food delivery options

Uber Eats is not available in Iceland. However, the country has its own food delivery service known as AHA, which offers a wide range of options from local Icelandic cuisine to international dishes. This service allow you to enjoy the convenience of food delivery directly to your accommodation.

Download AHA

Final Thoughts on Uber and Transport in Iceland

While Uber’s absence might initially seem like a hurdle for travelers accustomed to the convenience of the app, Iceland offers a plethora of transportation options catering to the diverse needs and preferences of its visitors. From the independence provided by car rentals to the efficiency of the public transport system, getting around Iceland is manageable and can enhance your travel experience.

Renting a car stands out as a particularly appealing option for those eager to explore Iceland’s natural beauty at their own pace. It offers the freedom to visit remote waterfalls, volcanoes, and hot springs that are less accessible by public transport. However, for those staying within urban areas or preferring not to drive, taxis, local ride-sharing apps, and organized tours provide excellent alternatives that combine convenience with the opportunity to learn from locals.

Iceland’s approach to transportation, focusing on safety, reliability, and sustainability, mirrors the country’s overall ethos. While navigating this island nation might require a bit more planning and flexibility than simply hailing an Uber, the reward is a deeper connection to the land and its culture. Whether you’re soaking in the otherworldly landscapes from the window of a bus, sharing stories with a local taxi driver, or navigating the open road with a rental car, Iceland offers a journey as memorable as its destinations.

This guide aims to prepare you for a smooth and enjoyable exploration of Iceland. By understanding the available transportation options, you can tailor your travel plans to suit your interests and ensure an unforgettable adventure in the land of fire and ice.

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