We recommend booking the hostels before arrival, especially if you plan to travel during high season in summer and popular holidays, such as Christmas and Easter. Our hostels accept walk-ins and if you travel in off season, you can check availability and make reservations on short notice.
You can book your stay using our website, or by contacting our hostels directly. Our Central Booking Office offers the service of pre-booking the hostels and we encourage you to have a look at the hostel & car combo that includes both car rental and overnight stays at HI Hostels; we handle all the details of the booking from start to finish. If you are booking for a group, please fill in the group enquiry form on this website and we will get back to you as soon as possible.
- by cancellation until 4 weeks (28 days) before arrival, we will refund 100%
- by cancellation 14-27 days before arrival, we will refund 70%
- by cancellation 7-13 days before arrival, we will refund 30%
- by cancellation with less than 7 days before arrival, no refund will be given
Children aged 4-12 years get a discount of bookings, but the discount is not displayed online so please mention it upon arrival if you are travelling with children. Children under 4 years old stay for free if they are in baby bed (provided by hostels) or in bed with parent/s. If children are in their own bed, they are eligible for a discount.
HI members enjoy at least 10% discount of accommodation at HI Hostels worldwide, the membership is valid at all HI Hostels for one year. Many hostels have local partners that offer HI members discounts of products and services so be sure to ask about local discounts at your hostels.
No, it is not mandatory to have membership to stay at our hostels. If you are a member, we recommend you book via our website to ensure you the best possible rate. The prices advertised if you book via our website are HI member prices, so non-members pay extra upon arrival if they do not want to purchase membership.
It’s usually worth it to buy membership if you’re staying at least 3-4 nights at hostels during your trip. Your membership is of course valid for an entire year and can be used at HI Hostels worldwide.
Yes, our car rental partner requires credit card details as insurance for all car rental bookings. The credit card cannot be prepaid.
At the end of the reservation process you will receive a "Reservation Confirmation" page with the reservation number highlighted. You will also receive a confirmation e-mail containing the details of your reservation. You should save these to your phone or print and keep them for your records.
The currency in Iceland is the Icelandic króna (ISK). The Central Bank of Iceland updates the exchange rate of the króna daily on their website: https://www.cb.is. Cards are very widely accepted as payment in Iceland, please contact your bank/card provider for information on fees for using your card abroad.
The only thing that is certain about the Icelandic weather is that it’s completely unpredictable! The weather can often change quickly so it is very good to monitor the weather forecast and road conditions when travelling, especially during wintertime. If you are travelling here in wintertime, it’s good to have flexible plans and remember that the days are short so don’t plan too much for each day.
Although the ring road is mostly paved, there are spots along the way where special care needs to be taken due to narrow roads, one-lane bridges, etc. At road.is, you can find updated information about road conditions all around the country.
Unfortunately there’s no official website that monitors gas prices in Iceland but you can find an unofficial one at www.gsmbensin.is
We recommend bringing good hiking boots, and layers of clothing so that you can add or remove clothes when necessary. Hats and gloves are always a good idea as well as a swimsuit to visit the many thermal pools located all round the country.
Yes, you can and visiting Iceland in winter can be a wonderful adventure! Expect the unexpected as you are usually treated to all sorts of weather when travelling in Iceland and there are very few guarantees when it comes to the weather. Safety is always important when travelling in Iceland, this is of course especially important in winter. Some flexibility in your plans is both good and necessary when travelling in winter as the weather can change very quickly. The days are short and very few hours of daylight in the darkest months.
Some of our hostels are closed in the wintertime although we do have quite a few hostels that are open all year round. You can expect snow and icy roads when travelling in winter, and we discourage people with no experience driving in winter/snow from renting cars. In those cases, it’s best to use public transport and/or book day tours to stay at different hostels and visit popular attractions. It is necessary to check the weather forecast and road conditions regularly whilst travelling in wintertime, and various information on travelling safely in Iceland can be found via this website: www.safetravel.is.
The staff in the Central Booking Office and at the hostels will do their best to assist you in case your travel plans change because of bad weather.
In the Icelandic countryside, public restrooms can be few and far apart although services have been improved in many areas in recent years. The service stations around the ring road have bathrooms, some of which you will need to pay a small fee for, and we highly recommend that you make use of them and plan your trip accordingly. You can find the location of the N1 service stations on their website: https://www.n1.is/en/locations/.
Relieving oneself in public areas or privately-owned land is highly inappropriate.
Electricity in Iceland uses the Europlug/Schuko-Plug (CEE types), which has two round prongs - 230v/50 Hz. You may therefore need to bring an adapter and/or voltage converter. Some hostels have adapters for rent and appliances, such as hairdryers.
Not at all! Our hostels are a great option for people of all ages who want to meet new people and the opportunity to cook their own meals as all HI Hostels have a guest kitchen.
Yes, you can reach all our hostels with a normal car. The last 100 metres to Fljótsdalur HI Hostel are only accessible for 4x4 cars, but the road to the hostel is otherwise fine for normal cars.
You need a 4x4 car (at least the F type car) to drive on the highland and on all F-marked roads. Driving off road (off marked paths or roads) is illegal and subject to fines.
If you are travelling in wintertime, we recommend booking a car with 4x4 (at least D or F type), especially if you plan to drive around the country.
Check-in at most hostels begins after 14:00 and check out is at 10:00. This time may vary a little between hostels, but these are the general guidelines. Please notify the next hostel on your itinerary if planned arrival is after 20:00 to make sure someone is available to welcome you and check you in, or to give you instructions so that you can get inside and find your room upon arrival.
Many hostels offer breakfast, please contact us at the Central Booking Office for further information. We can include breakfast in your booking, or you can add it upon arrival and pay for it separately. Our hostels do not serve other meals for individual bookings, but meals can be bought in the near vicinity of the hostels in many cases. For meals for groups: please contact the group team for information on meals provided for groups or refer to the group pages on our website.
Yes, all our hostels have well equipped guest kitchens with all the basic appliances and utensils to prepare a normal meal. We encourage our guests to make sure they bring food supplies to hostels located in the countryside and far from supermarkets and service stations. Many towns and villages around the country are small so you may want to stock up at large supermarkets that can be found in bigger towns.
Linen is included at most hostels, but it does vary if you book them directly via our website. A few hostels still allow sleeping bags or offer you the chance to bring your own bed linen or rent it upon arrival. Information on whether bed linen is included should be included in the booking process. If you make your booking through our Central Booking Office, bed linen is included at all hostels.
Towels are available for rent at the hostels and are sometimes included in linen rental.
No, smoking is prohibited indoors at all HI Hostels. Please do not leave cigarette butts on streets or in nature but dispose of them in nearest containers or appropriate bins.
There are currently 34 HI Hostels all round Iceland, with something to suit every need and want. Each hostel is unique, most are family-run, and many are in buildings with an interesting history. They are located both in towns and in the countryside, close to nature with opportunities for activities at the hostels themselves and further away so we recommend spending more than one night at each hostel when possible. There are a sometimes several hostels in the same area, so you often have another option close by if your selected hostel does not have availability. You can see detailed information about our hostels on our website.
You can use public transport to reach quite a few of our hostels, but it can be difficult to get to our hostels that are not located close to the ring road or hostels located outside of towns or villages if you are using public transport. It’s best to contact us at the Central Booking Office or the hostels directly for information on accessibility by bus. Some hostels offer pick-up service to nearest town or road junction for a fee.
For solo travellers, the age limit is 18 years old. Young people who have not reached that age can travel with a letter of consent from a parent or legal guardian to permit them to stay on their own in our hostels.
Our hostels offer a variety of rooms, both private rooms from 2 bed rooms to 6 bed rooms, as well as beds in shared dorm rooms. Dorm rooms are most often 6 bed rooms but can also be smaller or bigger than that. Bed capacity varies quite a lot between hostels so please contact the Central Booking Office if you want further details on the hostels.
Quite a few hostels have private cabins or cottages that have their own wc/bathroom and sometimes a private kitchenette.
We recommend contacting our Central Booking Office for information on wheelchair accessibility at our hostels. Hostels that are suitable for wheelchair users have that information listed under “hostel facilities” on the hostel pages.
There is free parking at all hostels located outside of Reykjavík. In Reykjavík, there is free parking at City Hostel. If you are staying in the city centre (Downtown or Loft Hostels), parking is charged in the city centre from 8:00 to 18:00 on weekdays, and from 10:00 to 16:00 on Saturdays. Parking is free outside those times. Parking metres accept both cash and cards for payment.
You can arrive before check-in begins and leave your luggage until check-in begins. For long-term storage, it’s best to contact the hostels directly for further information.
Some hostels have laundry facilities for guests, please refer to the hostel facilities information on our hostel pages. Laundry facilities are restricted to guests only.
Reykjavík Downtown HI Hostel and Loft HI Hostel are both located in the city centre; Loft Hostel is right on the main shopping street, Reykjavík Downtown Hostel is on a quiet street, but very well located and close to the old harbour. Loft is ideal for solo travellers wanting to meet new people; the hostel has a balcony and bar/café on the top floor with various events scheduled every week. There are plenty of restaurants and shops near both our downtown hostels.
Reykjavík City HI Hostel is in one of the city’s largest green areas, about 10 minutes’ drive from the city centre. There is free parking outside the hostel. Laugardalslaug, the city’s largest swimming pool, and Reykjavík Park and Zoo are very close to the hostel. Pick-up for tours is provided at or very close to our Reykjavík Hostels.
Keflavík Airport is located about 50 minutes’ drive from Reykjavík, and if you are not picking up a rental car at the airport, you can take a bus into Reykjavík and ask to be taken to where you’re staying for a small extra fee. There are 2-3 companies that offer shuttle service to and from the airport, and there are always buses waiting outside the airport when there are flights arriving.
Most tours can be booked directly on our website in a few easy steps, or after arrival at our Reykjavík HI Hostels if the tour departs from Reykjavík. You can easily filter search results by location, category and so forth on our website to help you find a suitable tour.
If you want to change the date or departure time for the tour, you will need to contact the help desk, the phone number and email address is at the bottom of your voucher. If you booked through a booking agent at the Central Booking Office, you can contact us by email for any changes.
You will need to contact the help desk; the phone number and email address is at the bottom of your voucher. We adhere to the cancellation policy of the company that the tour is booked with. If there are no cancellation fees, then we can offer a full refund. If you need to cancel the tour on short notice, please contact the company responsible for the tour, the contact details are on your voucher.
The northern lights tours are operated from September to April and you can book popular Northern lights tour here.
To be able to see the northern lights, you need both clear skies and aurora activity. The tour providers are excellent at finding spots not far from the city where the lights are more likely to be seen, away from the city’s light pollution. You can check the cloud cover and aurora forecasts on the Icelandic Met Office’s website. The tour is either confirmed or cancelled in the afternoon each day, depending on aurora and weather forecasts. If your tour gets cancelled, you can reschedule for another time, and if you are not able to reschedule the tour, you are eligible for a refund. If you go on a tour, but do not see any northern lights, you can usually go on another tour, but are not entitled to a refund.
Feel free to contact the hostel you will be staying at or us at the Central Booking Office and we will do our very best to find a tour that suits your wants and needs!
Depending on the tour, you may or may not need to book in advance. Popular tours, such as a visit to the Blue Lagoon needs to be pre-booked well in advance, and tours with limited spots can also become fully booked. Classic day tours, such as the Golden Circle have unlimited seats and can be booked closer to departure. When booking tours in advance, you have the comfort of knowing that your seat is guaranteed and you save time on your vacation.
We are unable to offer any discounts on tours as HI Iceland is not a tour provider; we simply offer customers the possibility to book a variety of tours via our website at no extra cost to add to their experience and help them plan their stay before arrival.
Yes, for tours that depart from Reykjavík, tour operators offer pick-up at most guesthouses and hotels and you can choose your pick-up location during the booking process.
If you are staying in Reykjavík, you might notice that big buses are not allowed in the city centre. The city has put up several conveniently located bus stops, no more than a few minutes’ walk from your hostel. The hostel reception has maps to show you exactly where the bus stop is. If you are staying at our Reykjavík City HI Hostel, the pick-up is right outside the hostel.
We are unable to offer our customers any discounts on tours as HI Iceland is not a tour provider; we simply offer our customers the possibility to book a variety of tours via our website at no extra cost to add to their experience and help them plan their stay before arrival.
Yes, please print out the voucher and present it to the tour provider.
Most tour providers need to have the voucher, the staff at the hostel can help you print out the voucher for a small fee
If you are more than 9 persons, then you are not able to book the hostels via our website. Instead, we ask you to send us a group booking form with your request and our group team will be in touch with you as soon as possible.
All HI Hostels in Iceland welcome all travellers, both individuals and groups. There are however some hostels that are better suited for groups: specific group hostels where we can also offer group rates in off season as well as more services for groups, such as meals, activities, transport and and forth.
Our hostels vary in size and bed capacity so please contact us for further information on facilities and services offered at the hostels.
Groups membership is offered by HI national associations in many countries. Please contact Hostelling International in your home country to enquire about group membership.
We are happy to help our groups arrange activities and tours around the country, either for private tours or as part of a bigger group. Contact us to find out about the choices we can offer your group!
Yes, bed linen is included in all bookings made through the Central Booking Office.
No, towels are generally not included in our bookings, but can be added at all hostels for groups if requested.
Some hostels offer full board but services for groups vary between hostels so it’s best to contact us for accurate information. Many hostels offer breakfast for groups, but not all. All HI Hostels have fully equipped guest kitchens where you can store and prepare your own meals.
- by cancellation until 6 weeks (42 days) before arrival, we will refund 70% of the total amount.
- by cancellation 22-41 days before arrival, we will refund 50% of the total amount.
- by cancellation with less than 21 days’ notice, no refund will be given.