Budget Breakdown: Iceland

Iceland is not a cheap country to visit. In fact, in my post about 10 ways to save money in Iceland, I mention how it ranks as the 14th most expensive country in the world according to Business Insider.

As a traveler who stretches every dollar as far as possible, my biggest concern was how to keep my expenses low while still experiencing all the activities I wanted.

My three biggest decisions to cut my expenses were to:
1. Travel in winter
2. Cost-share with another traveler
3. Prioritize a list of 3 must-do adventure activities while deciding to save the others for another trip.

Admittedly, I still overspent on my usual budget of $2000 a month – but this was no ordinary trip. I experienced some of the most unique attractions and crossed a big item off my bucket list: diving the continental divide (which was 25% of my standard $2000 budget).

Just another reason why you should visit Iceland - in wintertime!

You can’t put a price on experiences when they are a once-in-a-lifetime. Like diving the continental divide and touching two continents at once.

This was by far my most expensive country I’ve traveled and if you’re curious about how much I spent, here are all my budgeting charts and breakdowns in Canadian dollars.

Budget Breakdown

Total Days: 17 – January 14-31
Total Kilometres Traveled: 4000km
Daily Average: $198.30
Total Money Spent (after cost splitting): $3,371.15



Top 5 Biggest Purchases:

  1. Gasoline: $525 (at almost $2 a litre)
  2. Accommodation: $510 (~$32 a night)
  3. 4×4 Car Rental: $471
  4. Flight: $497
  5. Silfra Scuba Dive: $459

For a specific look at how my budget breaks down:



Iceland is a popular country but a pricey one.

Transportation was by far the biggest expense. Vehicle rental, fuel and airplane tickets added up to a pricey $1500. Add in $510 for accommodation and another $500 for diving Silfra and that’s $2500, or 73% of my expenses.

I chose to travel in winter with discounted prices but you can choose budget options while visiting in summertime as well. Consider camping, taking the local bus and hiking as national parks are free to visit in Iceland.

*Some of the links included are affiliate links which help support me and keep me on the road so I can share more adventure with you!

Do you have any budget tips for traveling Iceland or thoughts on how to save money while traveling? Share them in the comments below!


3 Replies to “Budget Breakdown: Iceland”

  1. Thank you so much! Hearing about your experience makes me want to get up and just take that dive. You truly are an inspiration and somehow it makes me happy that you are doing what you love!

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