Icelandic money in the form of banknotes

2 minute read


Learn what currency Iceland uses, how to use your card, and how to shop tax-free. Also find out whether you need cash, and if you should tip.

What currency does Iceland use?

Iceland uses its own currency, the Icelandic króna (plural: krónur). The currency symbol is ISK or kr.

See Landsbankinn for the latest exchange rates.

Can I use my card in Iceland?

International credit and debit cards are widely accepted using contactless (tap) payment or chip and PIN. The limit for contactless payments is ISK 7,500 per transaction.

It’s a good idea to make sure you know your PIN number, as you won’t be able to authorize with your signature.

Cards are accepted at most retailers, including small kiosks and market stalls, and at gas station pumps, parking meters, swimming pools, and elsewhere.

You’ll sometimes be asked if you prefer to pay in Icelandic krónur or your home currency. It’s almost always cheaper to pay in Icelandic krónur, as the exchange will be made by your bank and not the retailer.

Do I need cash in Iceland?

Card payments are preferred in most places in Iceland. Of course, it’s a good idea to take out some cash just in case you have issues with your card.

It’s normally cheapest to withdraw straight from an ATM or exchange cash at a local bank, rather than at the airport.

Do you tip in Iceland?

There’s generally no tipping culture in Iceland at restaurants, cafés, bars, and so on. That said, if you had a truly exceptional experience, a tip of around 10% would be gratefully received.

How much is VAT in Iceland?

VAT (or sales tax) in Iceland is 24% on most goods. On food and books, it’s 11%.

Can I shop tax-free in Iceland?

Yes! Participating retailers in Iceland will provide you with a tax-free receipt, which allows you to claim back most of the VAT on purchases of goods over ISK 6,000 when you leave the country.

Keep your receipts together for stamping at the airport, and post them in the envelope provided before you board your flight home.

You can shop tax-free regardless of where you’re from, the only requirement is that you’re not resident in Iceland.