You might be wondering how to save money while traveling in Iceland, then you have come to the right place. With a cheap car rental, you will be saving loads of money.
Iceland is becoming increasingly more popular and is usually ranked very high as a non-budget-friendly country. You might have done some research and came to the conclusion, that Iceland is super expensive. Please, do not let that stop you from coming, there are always ways to save money if you are smart about it.
I will try my best to give you the best budget tip s, to survive the cheapest in Iceland.
You are perhaps on a tight budget, thinking a rental car is not worth investing in, however, it is cheaper than traveling on a tour bus. With a cheap car rental, you can cover a lot more of Iceland's circumference in contrast to tour busses. And with the added bonus, you have the flexibility to spend the night nearby and continue on further. Taking a tour bus, you would be restricted to only the area of the chosen tour.
Contradicting that, if you are not looking to drive a lot yourself, there are numerous cheap day tour alternatives. Let us take The Golden Circle as an example. It is by far the most popular and well-known tour in Iceland which means that you can either choose between staying there for a full day or half a day. However, with a rental car, you will be able to do some more paid activity. Have that in mind.
Now, of course, with a cheap rental car, you also need to pay for gasoline. Luckily, you are one Google click away, to find out which gas station provides the cheapest gas. The absolute cheapest ones are only to be found in the Reykjavik area, so it would not be a bad idea to stock up on gas. Otherwise, in the rest of the country, the price difference is about 20 ISK more per liter compared.
Traveling in Iceland does not have to be expensive, you might just need a little help.
There are plenty of options for cheap apartments on Airbnb, that will stay inside your budget. A hostel is also a good alternative, just make sure you do your research to find the perfect place for you to stay at.
Camping can also be cheap, the campsites spread across the country do not charge a lot for the night: The more people, the cheaper the cost will be if you split it. Budget tip: If you have your own camping gear, I recommend bringing that as a way to save more money.
If you know anything about Iceland, you must have heard about The Blue Lagoon and it might be out of your budget range. No worries! There are plenty of other hot springs to come by. Just to mention a few, we have The Secret Lagoon (located an hour and a half from downtown Reykjavik), Mývatn Nature Baths (about 6 hours from Reykjavik, located in Northern Iceland).
Downtown Reykjavik is filled with different museums with no entrance fee that you can explore, such as Reykjavik Museum of Photos, Reykjavik Maritime Museum, and Saga Museum.
You can go see the magnificent church, Hallgrímskirkja, located in the heart of Reykjavik. There is a small fee of 1000 ISK to go to the top of the church for an amazing 360° view of the amazing and colorful Reykjavik and it is very recommended. Fun fact, it is the second tallest piece of architecture in Iceland.
When it comes to food, it definitely matters where you buy it, if you want to save as much money as possible. When searching for a grocery store, there are many to choose from. Some a lot more expensive than the other. The two cheapest grocery stores around, are Bonus and Kronan. They both have that distinctive color yellow as their logo so it should not be hard to find. Otherwise, Google will always be your number one guide.
I recommend cooking as much food at the place you are staying at, as a budget tip, if circumstances allow it, due to the fact that many restaurants overcharge for the most part. Which kind of brings me to the next part. I highly recommend you bring your own water bottle as some can charge 4 euros for bottled water you otherwise can get for free on tap.
Alcohol is, in general, expensive but a lot of the bars downtown have happy hour, and even at different times, which is a great way on how to save money. There is an app called "Appy Hour", which tells you exactly what bar has the cheapest prices! So... Happy "happy hour" hunting!