Cost of Study and Living in Iceland

Iceland is an economical study destination and has lot to offer. Read the post to know about the cost of study & living in Iceland-accommodation, tuition fees, transportation, health Insurance, work permit, and more..

Tuition Fees

Tuition fees for higher education institutions in Iceland vary depending upon the course of study, and ownership of institution- state or private. The state owned higher education institutions in Iceland do not charge tuition fees, while the private higher education institutions do charge tuition and registration fees. The students at the state owned higher education institutions are required to pay a registration fee that vary depending upon the institution. The registration fee is non-refundable. Generally, the registration fee is between 100 EUR and 250 EUR. 

The EU pupils have to pay less tuition fee as compared to the non-EU pupils. To know about the fee, contact the concerned higher education institution.

Living Expenses

The living expense for a single student in Iceland is ISK 140,600 to ISK 163,635 per month.  This may vary depending upon the lifestyle who wish to have. To know the breakdown of the living costs in Iceland, click here.

Rent per month-
You can expect to pay between 96,449 ISK and 203,827 ISK per month depending upon the location- city centre or outside city, and number of bedrooms- one or three.

Health Insurance

For European (EU)/EEA Students

The EU pupils must get a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) along with them as it indicates that you are allowed to health insurance at your home country. This card enables the students to take benefits during their stay in Iceland.  During the doctor visit in the country, the EU/EEA countries candidates must carry along the EHIC card, ID number (Kennitala) and a vlaid passport. By carrying along these documents, the EU/EEA country candidates are charged the same amount as the individual insured in Iceland.
To know more about the Icelandic health insurance mechanism, click here.

For Nordic Country Students

Students from Nordic countries if have insurance in another Nordic country are entitled to receive the benefits of insurance in Iceland.

For Non-EU/EEA Country Students

Pupils from non-EU/EEA countries must have a health insurance from an insurance company in their country that is permitted to function in Iceland, or they can also buy medical insurance from an Icelandic insurance company that covers a minimum of 2,000,000 ISK valid for the first 6 months of their stay. The cost of insurance is about 15,000 ISK. Some of the Icelandic insurance companies from where the students can purchase the insurance are as follows: 

Icelandic Social Security 

The Icelandic Social Security system is for individuals who live in Iceland. If the new residents have lived in the country for 6 months, in that case, they are entitled to get the Icelandic social health care. The qualifying duration commences from the date of registration in the National registry (pjoeskra) and after the qualifying duration, i.e. 6 months have been passed, the individuals get the Icelandic social health care and are not required to buy a medical insurance.

Medical Examination

Candidates coming from South and Central America, along with non-EU/EEA country citizens, Africa, Mexico and Asia who need residence permit must go for a medical examination. If the candidate possesses a valid medical certificate from the home country or abroad that has been issued within 3 months, in that case, the candidate need not go for medical tests. 

Candidates coming from the New Zealand, EEA (except Bulgaria and Romania), Canada, Australia, the USA and Switzerland are not required to submit a medical certificate. 

To know more about the medical examination, visit the official website of the Directorate of Health.

Health Care Centres in Reykjavik

Following are the health centres in Reykjavik:
Heilsugaesla Miebaejar 
Vesturgata 7, 101 Reykjavik. 
Tel. 354 5852600354 5852600

Smaratorg, Kopavogur, tel. 1770

Landspitali Haskolasjukrahus / University Hospital
Fossvogur. Tel. 354 543 1000354 543 1000 

Outside of Reykjavik

In Akureyri:
Akureyri Primary Health Care Centre
Address: Hafnarstraeti 99, 3rd to 6th floor
Tel. 354 460 4600354 460 4600 

In Borgarfjoreur (Bifrost/Hvanneyri):
Health Care Centre Borgarnesi
Address: Borgarbraut 65, 
Tel. 354 437 1400354 437 1400

In Isafjoreur:
Isafjoreur Hospital Health Care Centre
Tel. 354 450 4500354 450 4500

In Keflavik:
Health Care Centre Sueurnesja
Skolavegi 6, Keflavik
tel. 354 422 0500354 422 0500
To know more about the health care system or the centres in Iceland, visit the official website of the Intercultural Center.  

Student Accommodation

Following are the student accommodation options available in Iceland:

Guest-house: These are generally in close proximity to the campus. All the necessary amenities are provided.

Youth hostel: These are separate hostels outside the campus, and are inexpensive. This option lets you to stay with people from different regions, and know about their country and culture. 

To get the list of guesthouses or youth hostel available in Iceland, click here or visit the HotelsCombined website.  

Rent a room: Students are required to pay a security deposit, and may also require to sign a contract with the landlord. You can search for flat through the internet or newspaper. Students can share the room, and facilities like kitchen, bathroom, etc. are available. 

On-campus accommodation: There are standard rooms with all the indispensable facilities. 

Accommodation Costs-
For a single room: Students can expect to pay about 70,000 ISK and above per month.

List of rental services in Iceland

Following are the rental services available in Iceland:
Student Rental Agency: No fee is charges for the services offered.
University of Iceland Student housing option- Felagsstofnun studenta  

Housing certificate: Pupils coming from non-EEA must apply for a resident permit and must submit a housing certificate within a fortnight of arrival in Iceland. The housing certificate must be signed by the owner of the house and witnessed by 2 adults.


The public transport in Iceland is limited. 

Get Around by Bus

Travelling by bus in Iceland is easy and economical. You must pay the fare to the bus driver. Discount cards or student bus cards can also be used to get the benefits. 
The bus services in different regions of Iceland are:
  •  Straeto bsoperates bus services in Reykjavik
  • Straetisvagnar Akureyrar in the northern area of Akureyri

Driving in Iceland

The legal age of driving in Iceland is 17. To know about the driving license and other related things, click here.

Work Permit

Students must possess a valid work permit in order to work in Iceland. The EU/EEA nationals do not need a special work permit. The non-EU/EEA nationals are required to get a work permit for Iceland before arriving the country. 
 To know about the work permit, visit the official website of the Icelandic Directorate of Immigration or the Directorate of Labour.  

Upon Arrival Information

  • Apply for an Icelandic social security number or ID number- kennitala
  • Register their residence in Iceland

Things to Remember

Carry the following along with you:
  • A valid passport
  • Letter of acceptance issued from the higher education institution in Iceland
  • Insurance documents
  • Tickets

Emergency Number

For police, fire or ambulance emergency in Iceland- Call 112. 
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