Applying for a Schengen Visa to Iceland

Visiting Iceland on a Schengen Visa

Despite being a small island, Iceland has some wonderful natural attractions like the Blue Lagoon and the Gullfoss waterfall. There is also a great range of outdoor activities like glacier hiking and ice climbing, as well as its soothing volcanic spas.

To travel to Iceland for a short trip lasting fewer than 90 days, you will need an Iceland Schengen Visa, as it is part of the Schengen Area of European countries that have abolished border controls between each other.

Who needs a Schengen Visa to enter Iceland?

If you are traveling to Iceland, you will need a Schengen Visa if you are a citizen of a non-Schengen country without a visa-free travel agreement with the area, or if you have been refused visa-free travel.

How do I apply for a Schengen Visa to Iceland?

You will need two recently taken passport-style photos, a passport or other travel documents that less than 10 years old and valid for at least three months after your departure date from the Schengen Area. You will also need travel and medical insurance covering you up to costs of €30,000, a cover letter stating your itinerary and the purpose of your visit, as well as a flight itinerary and proof of accommodation during your stay, proof of your civil status, like a marriage certificate, and proof you have means of subsistence during your stay. You will need a signed invitation letter stating the duration of stay and a copy of your host’s passport and residence permit if you are visiting family or friends.

According to Icelandic law, those applying for an Iceland Visa, must prove they have 4,000 Icelandic krona or €28.83 per day. You will also need to show you have 20,000 Icelandic krona or €144.13 each time you plan to enter Iceland.

Can I use my Schengen Visa to enter another country?

The Schengen Visa is valid for all the countries in the Schengen Area for trips of up to 90 days. This applies to your entire trip - so 90 days in total rather than 90 days in each country.

Visa-free travel to Iceland

If you are from a country that has a visa-free arrangement with the Schengen Area - countries that include the U.K., U.S., and Canada - you don’t need to apply for a visa to Iceland. But you will need to apply for approval via the ETIAS system from the end of 2022. This collects biometric data and performs basic background checks on those wishing to travel to the Schengen Area.

Icelandic Visa requirements for a work, business or student visa

If you’re applying for a work visa to Iceland, you will need to provide the embassy/consulate with documents that prove you meet the visa requirements based on your employment status. If employed, you need an employment contract, a current bank statement, a no objection letter from your employer giving you leave to travel, and an income tax return. If self-employed, you will need a copy of your business license, company bank statements, and income tax returns.

Those who wish to apply for a residence permit and work permit in Iceland must have secured a job in Iceland and signed an employment contract. The employment contract must accompany the application which should be lodged before the applicant arrives in Iceland.

You will also need an invitation letter regardless of whether you are applying for a longer work visa or a short-stay business Schengen Visa. For this, you will need a signed letter from the foreign business partner or an invitation letter stating the nature and duration of your stay, a letter stating all expenses are covered, and confirmation of acceptance for an event.

Student Visas

Student visas require proof of enrolment at an Icelandic institution, a no objection letter from your place of study in your homeland, and an invitation letter.

Where do I apply for an Iceland Visa?

You will need to apply to the Icelandic embassy or consulate in your country of residence. However, as Iceland only has 16 embassies and 27 consulates spread all over the world, you may well have to apply via another country’s embassy, who will act on Iceland’s behalf, or visa application centers they partner with. For example, the Danish embassy often act for Iceland in visa matters.

How long does it take to get an Iceland Schengen Visa?

The processing time for an Iceland Schengen Visa may take up to 15 days in a normal situation - but could take up to 60 days to be issued in extreme circumstances. You can apply for your visa up to six months before you travel.

Why choose AXA Schengen Insurance?

Those traveling to the Schengen Area, including Iceland, need travel cover, and AXA’s Low Cost Travel Insurance only costs €0.99 ($1.11) per day of your trip and will meet your visa requirements, while the AXA Schengen Europe Travel Insurance offers extended coverage up to costs of €100,000. If you are seeking a multiple-entry visa you can purchase the Multi Trip insurance from €298 per year, which again covers you for expenses up to €100,000.

Other Schengen countries you might be interested in

Austria visa

Belgium visa

Czech Republic visa

Denmark visa

Estonia visa

Finland visa

France visa

Germany visa

Greece visa

Hungary visa

Iceland visa

Italy Visa

Latvia visa

Liechtenstein visa

Lithuania visa

Luxembourg visa

Malta visa

Netherlands visa

Norway visa

Poland visa

Portugal visa

Slovakia visa

Slovenia visa

Spain Visa

Sweden visa

Switzerland visa

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Frequently asked questions about getting an Icelandic Schengen Visa

Can I travel anywhere in Europe with a Schengen Visa?

The Schengen Visa allows you to travel through the 26 countries of the Schengen Area - which includes most of mainland Europe - including major countries like France/ Germany/ Italy and Spain. It also covers Nordic countries and parts -but not all - of Eastern Europe. There are no border controls within the Schengen Zone.

Is Iceland in the EU?

Iceland is not in the EU but it is a part of the European Economic Area and the Schengen Zone - and thus can be traveled to on a Schengen Visa.

Is an Iceland Visa easy to get?

Only around 2% of Schengen Visa applications to Iceland are rejected - making it one of the more accommodating countries in the Schengen Area.