Why You Should Visit Iceland When Travel Restrictions Are Lifted
In February 2020, Iceland was under a state of emergency, which the government lowered to the alert phase on May 25, 2020. Things have been looking up for the country since the restrictions have continued to be relaxed and more people can visit Iceland. According to the Icelandic authorities, the current regulations will remain in place until March 3, 2021, and border control measures will be cautiously lifted on May 1, 2021. Recently the Icelandic authorities decided that all vaccinated people, with and EU approved vaccine, will be allowed to travel to Iceland and will be exempted from border restrictions.
Now that you have been cocooning in your home for so long, the minute the travel restrictions are lifted, it will be an excellent time to spread your wings. Among the many places on your bucket list, Iceland should be your first stop. Here are a few reasons to activate your travel bug and visit Iceland when travel restrictions are lifted.
No Need to Hire a Translator or Utilize the Google Translator App
If you have ever tried reading the social media posts translated into English, you will realize that Google translates each word independently and cannot understand the entire sentence. No wonder the translations do not make sense.
On the other hand, hiring a translator is costly and could lead to misinterpretation and grave mistakes. One pharmaceutical company had to recall 4.6 million cans of baby formula because the poorly translated instructions could have caused death or illness.
Luckily, when you visit Iceland, you do not have to worry about such communication issues because English is universally spoken. Iceland natives learn English from an early age, and the language is also mandatory in school from the age of 7.
Lots of Breathtaking Sceneries in Nature
Even if you are traveling to have a good time, remember that the virus is not taking a break from spreading. Therefore, it is up to you to avoid crowded places. Usually, locations near Reykjavik have between 10,000 and 20,000 vehicles plying the roads, while those farther away only have 100 cars. You can guarantee your safety by spending more time in nature and less in populated areas.
You do not have to limit your day travel by having the restricted schedule offered by bus tours. Instead, you can opt for a self-drive tour, which enables you to stop wherever you please and immerse yourself in the spectacular sceneries for as long as you want. Some of the places you should visit include The Blue Lagoon, which National Geographic listed among the 25 Wonders of the World.
You could travel up to Diamond Beach, reminding you of the film "Titanic" with its giant icebergs. The Great Geysir, whose last activity was in 2016, could be waiting for you to grace it with your presence before it erupts again, so make a point of visiting it.
Topnotch Healthcare Facilities
Before you travel to some countries, you have to be vaccinated against all sorts of diseases, but there aren't any required vaccinations for your trip to Iceland. Your health is well taken care of thanks to plenty of clean and safe drinking water and high hygiene levels.
All the same, it is better to be safe than sorry, so buy some travel insurance from your home country before traveling. Also, to fill your trip with adventurous activities, ensure that the travel insurance covers them. Note that the weather is very unpredictable and you need a 4x4 vehicle to access certain roads and avoid accidents, especially during winter.
If you are not confident of your driving skills, book a private tour since the personal guide knows the best roads to take when traveling in the wilderness or winter. Should anything happen, Iceland has healthcare facilities in every major town and pharmacies, also locally known as "Apotek", and in case of an emergency, remember to dial the Iceland emergency number: 112.
Low Crime Rate
In the US, a burglary happens every 27 seconds bringing the average number per day to 3,300. As shocking as it is, you might reason that it is because 40% of Americans own guns, which gives burglars the confidence to go around breaking into people's houses.
Funny enough, Iceland is awash with guns, yet it is among the countries with the lowest violent crime rate. The police also barely ever need to use force; hence, the first time police were ever reported to gun down a person was in 2013.
In 2018, Iceland was declared the safest country globally for the third time in a row, which should give you peace of mind whenever you are in the streets or even in your hotel room. The country is naturally peaceful and even has no need for military; instead, guest militaries monitor its skies each year.
You will even find babies napping in their prams on the streets because it is the Icelandic culture, even when temperatures are at subzero.
Measures in Place to Prevent Overcrowding
The country is seeking to prevent overcrowding since authorities know that it is among the top tourist attractions worldwide. Consequently, if you want to stay in Iceland for up to six months, only your income will limit you. You must be self-employed or working with a recognized company and earning a monthly salary of at least $7,360, which translates to around $88,400 per year.
Such measures help to attract only high-earning professionals that encourage local economic growth, and by limiting the monthly income, Iceland prevents overcrowding. Furthermore, they have established more hotels further away from the towns to eliminate the risk of overcrowding, thus curbing the spread of infections. As a result, your health during your trip is prioritized.
Unlimited Access to Clean Water
Personal hygiene determines how safe you are from contracting COVID-19. Thus, traveling to a place without sufficient water increases your risk. Fortunately, you can put your mind to rest when traveling to Iceland because the country is rich in water and it never experiences a shortage.
Since the monitoring system of the water quality is very efficient, Icelanders have access to 100% pure water. Pollution is rare, and you can drink straight from the taps or streams if you have gone hiking.
You should not be alarmed by the stinking water during your hot shower; usually, the smell originates from the sulfur in the water coming from geothermal plants. Therefore, Icelanders have two water sources: hot water is for bathing while cold water is reserved for drinking.
Smaller Guesthouses Limit Overcrowding
When you visit Iceland, you can stay in a guesthouse near Reykjavik like this man
Although you might want to stay in a luxurious hotel during your visit, you should note that such places are likely to be crowded, which compromises your health during this pandemic. For this reason, the best alternative is a guesthouse outside of town, and Iceland has the ideal options for travelers interested in different experiences. When you visit Iceland, you can stay in a guesthouse near Reykjavik like this man
For instance, if you have always wondered what farm life is like, booking yourself in the guesthouse of one of the rural homes will satisfy your curiosity. Unlike hotels, which will be packed with tourists and limit your chances of having personalized service, guesthouses afford you that luxury. You can chat with the owner and have an insight into the local life.
Besides enjoying the complimentary breakfast, you can cook up something that excites your palate in the kitchen that most guest houses provide for personal or communal use.
Small Population, Less Risk of COVID-19 Infections
They say the more, the merrier, but now that we are dedicated to flattening the curve, the more people, the higher the risk. Luckily Iceland is a country with a small population of around 340,000. Consequently, officials can easily track down infected people and reduce further infections.
Since most of the population is concentrated in the capital, you are at lower risk if you can stick to the outskirts. Unlike in the US, where you can find 36 people per square meter, only three people live in each square meter in Iceland.
By February 25, 2021, nearly 2% of the population had been vaccinated. Therefore, by the time the border restrictions are lifted, there are high chances that most of the people will have been vaccinated. Consequently, you can travel anywhere without being concerned about your risk of contracting the virus.
While the above reasons to travel to Iceland are all worth paying attention to, the bottom line is that you have to afford your stay there. The good news is that many options are catering to travelers with different budgets. For instance, if you are on a tight budget, by using local transport and renting guest houses where you can cook your food instead of eating out in restaurants, you will save some money.
Come Visit Iceland!
What is the essence of a holiday if you have to do all the work: cook, drive, clean and carry out the same chores you do at home. Reward yourself with an ultimate vacation by leaving all your exploration needs to Tour.is.We give you personalized tours using whichever means you prefer and have expert tour guides to answer all the questions you may have. Our tours range between 3 and 12 or more days. Get in touch with us and let us recommend the ideal package to suit your needs.