Iceland Currency: What currency do they use in Iceland?

Wondering what the official Iceland currency is?

You’ve come to the right article as that’s exactly what I’m going to discuss.

Before setting off on a trip to Iceland, many people wonder what the currency is.

Is it Euros? Does it have its own currency? These are questions that need to be answered before you arrive in the country.

Luckily for you, after converting some currency myself and taking a trip to Iceland, I’ve created this ultimate guide with everything you need to know about the currency in Iceland.

So let’s get on with it!

Iceland Currency

To cut to the chase, the official Iceland currency is the Icelandic króna.

The Icelandic króna has been the currency of Iceland since 1918 when it replaced the Danish Krone.

In Icelandic (the language), the currency is called “Íslensk króna”. So it’s a direct translation, as the word for Iceland in Icelandic is Ísland.

If you are interested, the word “króna” translates to “crown” in English.

It’s a currency which grows year on year, strengthening against currencies like the Euro, Pound and Dollar.

In technical terms, it’s an appreciating currency. This is one of the reasons Iceland is expensive– its strong currency.

You will see the Icelandic krona written as ISK as its currency abbreviation. This is the equivalent of USD for American Dollars or GBP for British Pounds.

A picture of a waterfall in Iceland.

The denominations of coins which you can get of Icelandic króna are 5, 10, 50, and 100 krónur. By the way, krónur is the plural of króna. And the banknote denominations are 500, 1000, 2000, 5000 and 10000 Icelandic krónur.

There used to be a subunit of Icelandic króna called aurar. It would have been the equivalent of cents to dollars. However, due to inflation, they are no longer in use and were withdrawn from circulation in 2003.

When in Iceland, you will see “kr.” after the price of things. For example, a bottle of water might cost 287 kr.

I think the Icelandic króna is a pretty cool currency. The coins in particular look and feel a lot like what I imagine Viking money to have been like, which is obviously fitting due to being in Scandinavia.

And this is added to by the fact other Scandinavian countries have “króna” currencies too. I’ve been lucky enough to visit a few countries in the region and get to use all of the different currencies.

If you ask me, it’s worth keeping a few notes and coins as a souvenir from Iceland as the money in itself is cool.

But to summarise, the official Iceland currency is the Icelandic króna. This is the sole legal tender of Iceland, the only official Iceland money, and it is distributed by the Central Bank of Iceland.

Iceland Currency Conversion Rates

Obviously, currency conversion rates are constantly changing, every single day. Especially since the Icelandic króna is a currency which strengthens each year.

But as of September 2023, these are rough exchange rates for the Icelandic króna to give you an idea of how far your money will go during a trip to Iceland.

CurrencyIcelandic Krona
$1 USD136.24 ISK
£1 GBP169.43 ISK
€1 EUR145.29 ISK
¥1 JPY0.92 ISK
$1 AUD87.90 ISK
A picture of a black sand beach in Iceland.

Is Cash or Card better in Iceland?

As things become more modernised and the world moves into a digitalised economy, cash is becoming less favoured in Iceland.

A decade ago, you would use cash pretty much everywhere, and some places wouldn’t even accept cards.

Now, it’s the opposite. Everywhere prefers you to pay by credit or debit card, and some places do not even accept cash. I find this to be most common in tourist attractions or large restaurants.

In fact, Iceland is considered a cashless society. You might even find it hard to spend cash, so I don’t recommend converting any before a trip to Iceland.

Instead, I suggest getting a card which has no currency exchange fees, like Revolut. I use it everywhere I go and I save so much money by not having to pay my main bank fees for paying in a different currency.

English is spoken really well in Iceland so if you have any problems, I’m sure the cashier or server would be happy to help.

A picture of a countryside terrain in Iceland.

Do they use Euros in Iceland?

No, Euros are not used in Iceland.

Iceland is not part of the EU, and therefore, cannot use Euros as its currency.

You might find some places that accept Euros in Iceland, but not many. And the currency exchange rate will be ridiculous. It’s always best the use the official currency, which is Icelandic króna.

A picture of some Euro coins on a table. The official Iceland currency is Icelandic krona.

If you book things online like Blue Lagoon tickets, winter day trips from Reykjavik, Northern Lights tours, and things like that, then you can pay in your home currency.

Other Krónas

As I mentioned earlier, there are other króna currencies throughout Scandinavia and even into Central Europe.

“Króna” is actually one of the most common currency unit names in the world.

Other “crown” currencies include the Danish Krone, the Norwegian Krone, the Swedish Krona, and even the Czech Koruna of the Czech Republic.

I’ve visited a most of these countries and one thing the crown currencies have in common is that they are the currency of expensive countries, except the Czech Republic- it’s a very affordable country to visit.

Copenhagen was expensive when I visited. Despite there being a lot of Danish Krone in return for British Pounds, I found that Denmark was really expensive.

And again, Stockholm I found to be expensive, despite having a similar return for Pounds to Krona. The common denominator isn’t the currency, it’s the location. Scandinavia is just an expensive place to visit.

A picture of a mix of Danish and Swedish currencies. The official Iceland currency is Icelandic krona.
A mix of Danish Krone and Swedish Krona.

Iceland Currency: FAQ

Below are some questions related to Iceland’s currency along with my answers to each.

What is the best currency to bring to Iceland?

The best currency to bring to Iceland is the Icelandic Krona (ISK), as it is the official currency of Iceland. While card is widely accepted for transactions within the country, it’s recommended to have some on hand for convenience.

How much is 1 GBP to 1 ISK?

As of September 2023, £1 GBP is equivalent to 169.43 ISK, but exchange rates fluctuate. Make sure to check a reliable source for the current GBP to ISK conversion rate before your trip.

Should I take any cash to Iceland?

Having some cash on hand is advisable for small expenses, but debit and credit cards are widely accepted in Iceland. In fact, many people consider Iceland a cashless country.

Is US currency accepted in Iceland?

While some places may accept US dollars in Iceland, it’s generally not recommended to bring any. It’s best to use Icelandic Krona (ISK) or credit cards for smoother transactions during your visit.

Does Iceland have its own currency?

Yes, Iceland has its own currency, the Icelandic Krona (ISK), which is used for all transactions within the country. Both cash and cards are widely accepted.

Conclusion: Iceland Currency

And there you have it, a complete guide to the official Iceland currency.

Remember, the currency in Iceland is the Icelandic Krona.

Iceland is a pretty cashless country, so make sure to have a card with good conversion fees with you.

Enjoy your trip to Iceland, it’s an incredible country!