Are you traveling to Iceland soon and wondering what is the best way to stay connected on your trip to Iceland? Get ready to be blown away by the sheer beauty of this country, but don't let high roaming charges or slow overseas data roaming plans ruin your trip. This is the ultimate guide for finding the best sim card for traveling to Iceland in 2024.
In this guide you will find everything you need know about buying a sim card for Iceland with up to date prices as per January 2024, the best 4G/5G network in Iceland, where to buy a prepaid sim card, the best e-sim cards for Iceland, info about buying a sim card at Reykjavik Airport and even info about international sim cards for Iceland.
It took me 106 countries to finally visit Iceland. As expected it turned out to be an epic trip with glaciers, hikes, caves, black sand beaches and even the northern light. Read all about it in my trip report Iceland country no. 106 as part of my series of visiting every country in the world.
Being a full time travel blogger and nomad one of the most important things of planning my next trip abroad is looking for ways to stay connected. Therefore I always compare local prepaid sim cards with e-sim cards and pick my favorite.
Since I like to document all my travel tips you can already find more than 200 sim card guides on Traveltomtom from all over the world: USA, Canada, Mexico, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Dublin, Denmark, Copenhagen, Ireland, Israel, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Thailand, South Africa, Kenya, Europe, Asia, Australia, etc.
So whenever you are planning your next adventure abroad come check out Traveltomtom for the latest prepaid and e-sim card advice. Bookmark me and let me help you save money!
Why buying a sim card in Iceland
Isn't Iceland most famous for its outdoor activities and road trips? So what if you are looking for directions on Google Maps or there is an emergency in your family? You are going to wait for the hotels WiFi? Bars and restaurants in Iceland mostly have free WiFi as well, but since everything is so remote, don't rely on these slow public WiFi connections.
Also reminding you that public WiFi is through an UNSECURED connection. Be sure to protect your data, the use of a VPN in these cases is recommended.
Getting a prepaid sim card or an e-sim card for traveling in Iceland is easy. It is set up fast and you get a good amount of gigabytes for a fair price. For these reasons I always recommend travelers to stay connected when traveling abroad. It simply makes traveling so much easier.
Traveltomtom recommends a Simmin sim card for Iceland as they have the best 4G/LTE network in Iceland. A prepaid sim card with 10 GB data for 1 month will cost you around $23 USD.
This doesn't sound too bad but if you have an e-sim compatible phone then you are lucky because e-sim cards are even cheaper. E-sim cards for Iceland already start from just $4.5 USD. But for $21.90 USD you already get 15 GB plus unlimited calls/sms.
Another great alternative to stay connected on your trip to Iceland is a travel sim card. These international prepaid sim cards with data are valid in multiple countries and I recommend you to check out my article with a comparison of the best global sim cards with data for travelers in 2024. There are some great sim card deals for traveling to Iceland available as physical as well as e-sim cards.
Make sure your phone is unlocked before buying a prepaid sim card in Iceland, an international sim or an e-sim card. If your phone is locked none of these sim cards will work in your phone. If you are unsure about this then ask your mobile internet provider in your home country before your trip to Iceland.
Best e-sim cards for Iceland
There is no easier way to get data on your phone than using an e-sim card when traveling to Iceland in 2024. No more visiting a sim card shop or swapping physical sim cards. Get your e-sim online and arrange everything in just a couple clicks.
You order an e-sim card for Iceland on the internet, you receive a QR code, scan it, follow the simple steps and within less than 2 minutes you have a Iceland e-sim card installed on your phone.
Upon arrival in Iceland it automatically connects you to an available network and you enjoy data on your phone pretty much when the plane lands.
Make sure your phone is e-sim compatible before ordering an e-sim card for Iceland.
Airalo is a reliable e-sim provider and Traveltomtom has used Airalo in more than 50 countries around the world and never faced an issue. Here are the Airalo e-sim card plans for Iceland for 2024:
- 1 GB for 7 days = $4.5 USD
- 2 GB for 15 days = $7.5 USD
- 3 GB for 30 days = $10 USD
- 5 GB for 30 days = $14 USD
- 10 GB for 30 days = $23 USD
- 20 GB for 30 days = $36 USD
Click here for more info or to order an e-sim card for Iceland directly online via Airalo.
The Nenna Mobile e-sims from Airalo are data-only e-sim cards and only valid in Iceland. Incoming and outgoing calls/sms are not supported. Nenna Mobile operates on the 4G/LTE network of Nova.
SimOptions is another reliable e-sim provider that sells e-sim cards for pretty much every country in the world. SimOptions has international e-sim cards for Iceland. These e-sims include calling and texting and free EU roaming data, which means they are valid all over Europe, including Iceland:
- 15 GB data + unlimited calls in Europe for 15 days = $21.90 USD
- 10 GB data (5G ready) + $2 calling credit for 30 days = $24.90 USD
- 12 GB data + 30 minutes international calls + unlimited calls in Europe for 14 days = $29.90 USD
- 30 GB data + unlimited calls in Europe for 30 days = $44.90 USD
- 30 GB data + 120 minutes international calls + unlimited calls in Europe for 14 days = $49.90 USD
- 50 GB data (5G ready) + 120 minutes international calls + unlimited calls in Europe for 28 days = $59.90 USD
Click here for more info or to directly order an international e-sim card for Iceland via SimOptions.
Nomad is another e-sim provider tested and reviewed by Traveltomtom in more than 10 countries around the world. Here are the Nomad e-sim card plans for The Netherlands in 2024:
- 1 GB data for 7 days = $6 USD
- 3 GB data for 30 days = $12 USD
- 5 GB data for 30 days = $14 USD
- 10 GB data for 30 days = $19 USD
- 15 GB data for 30 days = $27 USD
- 20 GB data for 30 days = $33 USD
Click here for more info or to order an e-sim card for Iceland via Nomad.
Before ordering an e-sim card for Iceland make sure your phone is e-sim card compatible. All newer smartphones are e-sim card compatible.
If you like to order a sim card for Iceland online but your phone is not e-sim compatible then you have to look into physical prepaid sim cards that can be used in Iceland. SimOptions has a wide range of physical prepaid sim cards for Iceland.
You can order them online and a physical sim card will be deliverd to your home address before your trip to Iceland. You can already get a sim card with 15 GB data + unlimited calls/text in all of Europe for $21.90 USD.
Iceland sim cards and free roaming in Europe
Since 2017 there are no roaming costs anymore within Europe and since Iceland is part of the EU you can use your Iceland sim card in every other country in Europe at no extra costs. That simply means that you can use the data bundle of your Iceland sim card also in Amsterdam, London, Paris, Rome, Madrid, etc.
When buying a prepaid sim card in Iceland always ask the provider for the EU data roaming restrictions.
There are also designated sim cards for tourists traveling to Europe. In my comparison of the best prepaid and e-sim cards for Europe in 2024 you will find a list of (e)-sim cards that you can directly order online and are valid in all if Europe.
For more info about EU data roaming, Brexit, UK sim cards, etc. check out my complete guide with tips for buying a local prepaid sim card on arrival in Europe in 2024.
Mobile internet operators in Iceland
There are 3 mobile internet providers in Iceland: Vodafone, Siminn and Nova. All of them offer prepaid sim cards for tourists. There are physical prepaid sim cards as well as e-sim cards available for tourists.
However, in reality it is hard to get an e-sim card on arrival in Iceland because they only supply e-sims in official phone stores of Nova, Vodafone or Siminn.
So for example at Reykjavik Airport there are no phone stores of Nova, Vodafone or Siminn, only convenience stores. So you can only buy a physical prepaid sim cards, no e-sims.
Where to buy a sim card for Iceland
Buying a sim card at Reykjavik Airport Keflavik
The most convenient place to buy a prepaid sim card in Iceland is upon arrival at Reykjavik Airport. As soon as you walk out of the Arrivals door on your right hand side you will see a lime green convenient store.
This convenience store is the only place in Reykjavik Airport where you can buy a prepaid sim card. At the convenience store they sell prepaid sim cards for tourists from Vodafone, Siminn and Nova. You can only get a physical prepaid sim card, there are no e-sims for tourists available.
Iceland sim card insider tip: I asked the guy behind the counter which provider had the best network coverage and he was clear in his answer: Siminn! Find more info about the best 4G/5G network in Iceland in 2024 below.
The convenience store is open 24 hours and you can pay by credit card. There is also an Elko store at Reykjavik Airport that sells prepaid sim cards for tourists.
Phone stores Reykjavik city center
Unfortunately in the city center of Reykjavik you can’t find any of the mobile phone stores. The Siminn, Nova and Vodafone store are all located a little outside of the city center. So even more reasons to buy a sim card at Reykjavik Airport when traveling to Iceland and you didn't buy a sim card online.
As part of my research I went to the stores of the official mobile internet providers in Reykjavik and found out that Vodafone, Siminn and Nova sell the exact same Iceland sim cards as you can get at the airport and also at gas stations.
Your best bid for buying a sim card in Iceland if you missed the opportunity at Reykjavik KEF airport is at gas stations. Therefore even more reasons to order your sim card for traveling to Iceland on the internet.
To save precious time on your holiday to Iceland order your sim card online. Forget about the hassle of buying a sim card on arrival in Iceland. There are amazing e-sim cards deals for Iceland on the internet.
Click here for buying a data-only e-sim card for Iceland or here for an international e-sim card for Iceland including calls and texting. Or when your phone is not e-sim card compatible you can buy an international prepaid sim card for traveling to Iceland.
Prices Iceland prepaid sim cards in 2024
All the below sim cards for Iceland can be bought at Reykjavik Airport Keflavik at the lime green convenient store, at official retail stores in Reykjavik and also at gas stations.
All the info below is updated as er January 2024 and prices are in Icelandic Krona: $1 USD = 136.7 ISK and 100 ISK = $0.73 USD.
Vodafone offers a prepaid starter kit for tourists including 1 GB data and 3 GB for your tablet or dongle.
- 1 GB data + unlimited calling + sms for 30 days = 1,790 ISK ($13 USD)
Then you can top up with one of the above packages:
- 1 GB data = 2,190 ISK - $16 USD
- 10 GB data = 3,190 ISK
- 25 GB data = 5,190 ISK - $38 USD
- 50 GB data = 6,190 ISK
- 150 GB data = 8,190 ISK - $60 USD
- 500 GB data = 10,190 ISK
For more info check out the Vodafone Iceland website. But it is a bit of a maze and prices are not displayed very well and different info is provided on different pages. There is also no info if free EU data roaming is included in a prepaid Vodafone Iceland sim card.
- 2 GB data in all of EU + unlimited calling/sms in Iceland = 1,990 ISK - $14.5 USD
- 20 GB data (10 GB in EU) + unlimited calling/sms in Iceland = 2.690 ISK
- 100 data (15 GB in EU) + unlimited calling/sms in Iceland = 3,490 ISK - $25.5 USD
- 250 data (25 GB in EU) + unlimited calling/sms in Iceland = 6,690 ISK
For more info check the Nova Iceland website.
- 10 GB data in all of EU + 50 minutes in all of EU + 50 sms in Iceland = 2,900 ISK - ($21 USD)
- 10 GB data only in all of EU = 2,900 ISK - ($21 USD)
For more info check out the Siminn website.
Best mobile data network in Iceland in 2024
Equally or even more important for finding the best prepaid sim card for Iceland is the mobile internet coverage. Where can you find a signal when traveling in Iceland. Especially in a country with so many remote places to visit it is not easy to stay connected.
Below you can find a comparison of the Iceland 4G/5G coverage maps of Siminn, Vodafone and Nova in order to find the best 4G/5G network in Iceland in 2024.
Is there 5G in Iceland?
Yes, there is 5G in Iceland. However, as per January 2024 it is still pretty much concentrated in areas around the capital Reykjavik. Nova Mobile has the best 5G network in Iceland in 2024. But let's have a closer look below.
Nova Iceland network coverage
Vodafone Iceland network coverage
Siminn Iceland network coverage
Although the above mobile data network coverage maps are updated for 2024 they are not 100% accurate. However, they are a great reference to compare the 4G/5G networks of the mobile internet providers in Iceland in 2024.
From the above 4G/5G coverage maps we can indeed see that Nova has the best 5G network in Iceland, but their overall 4G/LTE network coverage around the country is less compared to Siminn.
We can clearly see that Siminn has the best mobile data internet network in Iceland in 2024 with Vodafone being a good runner up. Especially those tourists who are going all around Iceland and are traveling on the ring road I recommend you buying a Siminn prepaid sim card just because of their extensive 4G/5G network.
Best sim card for Iceland in 2024
Comparing the prepaid sim cards and e-sim cards for Iceland we can actually come to the conclusion that e-sim cards for Iceland are cheaper than local prepaid sim cards in Iceland.
You can order an Iceland e-sim card on the internet before your trip and you are online as soon as the plane lands. But the best thing about e-sim cards for Iceland is that they are cheaper than local prepaid sim cards.
You can already get an e-sim card for Iceland with 15 GB data for just $21.90 USD.
However, if your phone is not e-sim compatible or you rather buy a local prepaid sim card on arrival then Traveltomtom recommends buying a Siminn prepaid sim for traveling in Iceland. Siminn has the most extensive 4G/5G network in Iceland and good prepaid sim card deals for tourists and therefore Siminn is the best prepaid sim card for Iceland in 2024.
The cheapest prepaid sim card for Iceland is actually from Nova. A Nova sim card gives you 20 GB data for around $20 USD and a Siminn sim card only gives you 10 GB for around the same price.
A Vodafone Iceland sim card is much more expensive and the provided info is also very minimalistic and therefore not recommended.
Buy a prepaid sim card for Iceland online
If your phone is not e-sim compatible but you would like to order a sim card for traveling to Iceland online before your trip then check out the following.
Arrive prepared in Iceland with an international prepaid sim card. You order them online and a physical prepaid sim card will be delivered to your home address. You put this sim card in your phone and it automatically connects to an available network upon arrival in Iceland, basically when the plane lands you are instantly online.
SimOptions is the only sim card provider that sells physical prepaid sim cards for Iceland:
1. O2 Go Card - $24.90
- 10 GB data
- $2 calling credit (no top-up)
- valid for 30 days
- valid in 34 countries
2. Three Data Pack - $24.90
- 10 GB data
- Unlimited calls/sms
- Valid 30 days
- Valid in 56 countries
3. Orange Holiday ZEN - $29.90
- 12 GB data
- Unlimited calls/sms in Europe
- 30 minutes worldwide
- 200 sms worldwide
- Valid 14 days
- Valid in 34 countries
4. Bouygues Telecom - $44.90
- 30 GB data
- Unlimited calls/sms in Europe
- Valid 30 days
- Valid in 47 countries
- 30 GB data
- Unlimited calls/sms in Europe
- 120 minutes worldwide
- 1,000 sms worldwide
- Valid 14 days
- Valid in 34 countries
Click here for more info or to order an international prepaid sim card for The Netherlands via SimOptions.
Personally Traveltomtom recommends the Bouygues Telecom or the Orange sim card with 30 GB data. I have used these sim cards a lot in the past and never had an issue.
But as mentioned many times before nowadays when traveling to Europe or The Netherlands I always use an e-sim card. It is just so easy and done fast and as soon as the plane lands you are online. You arrange everything online within just a couple minutes.
Portable WiFi devices for Iceland
Don’t want to change the sim card in your phone? There is an alternative for buying an Iceland sim card.
In front of the convenient store at Keflavik Airport you will also find a Hotspot.rent machine to order a portable WiFi device for Iceland. It will let you connect up to 10 devices at the same time while it gives unlimited 3G/4G. The price per day is 1,300 ISK ($9.50 USD). You have to rent the device for minimal 3 days.
You can print out your voucher and pick up your portable WiFi device around the corner. Fairly easy. As I didn’t try it out myself I don’t know about the battery life of the portable wifi device and the speed if you connect with more than 1 person, but keep in mind that you all share the same line and that data speed will significantly drop if you are using the portable wifi device with multiple people at the same time.
May be an option for those who are traveling to Iceland with kids, but not my preferred way to stay connected.
I hope all the above tips for buying a sim card for Iceland. If there is anything I can still help you with don’t hesitate to leave me a comment below or reach out to me on social media.
Curious what the life of a full time nomad and travel blogger who is aiming to travel to every country in the world looks like? Check out my Instagram profile @traveltomtom. As per January 2024 I have been to more than 155 countries.
Some links in this article about the best ways to stay connected when traveling to Iceland are affiliate links. If you buy any of the products after using an affiliate link I earn a small commission. Don’t worry this is at absolutely no extra costs to you.