Rent a car in Iceland
The Best Rental Car Prices in Iceland
Reviews from around the web
What people are saying about us
We are proud of our standards of quality and service and those standards are reflected in what our users have to say about us. Book your rental car or day tour with Northbound and rest assured that a strong team of travel advisors is prepared to assist with any of your questions or concerns both before or after your Adventure.
What type of Car is best for Iceland?
Iceland is a bigger place than many travelers realize and the Icelandic weather is about as random as it gets. What type of car hire you need ultimately falls down to when you’re traveling to Iceland and where you need that rental car to take you.
In winter, it might be ideal to rent a 4x4 car in case that Iceland gets blanketed with snow while you’re here. Some areas around the ring road get more snowfall than others, so having a 4x4 vehicle with decent ground clearance can make a huge difference when traversing through snow-covered roads.
In summer, a 4x4 car is only needed if you intend to head to the highlands for some adventure on the Icelandic F-roads. These roads are rougher than the ones found along the ring road and often require you to cross rivers, making them accessible only to 4x4 vehicles.
If you only intend to drive the ring road around Iceland, making stops at the popular attractions found along the way, then a perfectly suitable option might be a small economy car rental or anything else a bit friendlier to your budget.
We're not the biggest, but we are the best
Northbound is one of the largest marketplaces for rental cars in Iceland, with over 300 curated options for you to choose from and over 8.000+ verified reviews to help your decision. Our best price guarantee will ensure you will always get the best prices from the car rental and we do not add any fees on top of that price.
Best Service Guaranteed
We believe in forming long-term relationships with our users, which is why we only partner with local Iceland car rentals that provide the best possible service. From beginning to end, your journey shall be spectacular.
Easy to Use
The Northbound platform is designed by us from the ground up with user experience in mind so that you may find everything you need to assemble the perfect holiday in Iceland with the simple click of a button. Your Iceland rental car is waiting.
All bookings are reserved and confirmed immediately, leaving you with peace of mind and security in knowing that your Icelandic journey is waiting for you to arrive as you rent a car or book a tour in Iceland.
You'll find these cars while searching on Northbound
Our Icelandic Rental Cars
Quick and agile cars for those tight Reykjavík city streets. The hatchback is perfect for those looking for cheap car rental options.See More
Comfortable to drive with spacious cabins, these larger rental cars are a great means of traveling through Iceland with plenty of bootspace for all of your luggage.See More
The ultimate road trip vehicles. Experiencing Iceland behind the wheel of a 4x4 rental car is an experience unlike any other.See More
Minivans & Busses
Renting a car for a group of people can be tricky, but our selection of affordable minivans and passenger cars is the cheapest solution.See More
The freedom and mobility that comes with traveling Iceland in your affordable camper rental car is unmatched by anything.See More
With endless landscapes to explore, Iceland provides an extraordinary opportunity for adventure and there's no greater sense of freedom than hitting route 1 behind the wheel of a motorhome.See More
Real Reviews from Real Customers
Our customer written reviews
Car rental companies in Iceland can be incredibly different from one another which is why reading the reviews and hearing what others have to say about them is probably the most important thing youll do before you settle on a car. Visit our review center to compare over 8.000+ testimonials from verified travelers.
Rented a hatchback in May 2022
The car was perfect for our trip around the Ring Road! Pickup and dropoff were easy and smooth and communication was great with both Northbound and MYCAR.
Rented a 4x4 in March 2022
My experience with MyCar and northbound rental company was excellent. From the moment we walked into the location, we were treated with utmost care. Car was brand new and exactly what we asked for. All the documentation was in order and we did not h...
Rented a hatchback in April 2022
What a service, great customer service, The car was excellent and communication with Northbound is excellent and all my queries and questions were answered almost immediately were professional. The procedure for hiring and returning the car is very f...
Rented a 4x4 in April 2022
Booking through Northbound was flawelss and without any complications. The car itself could use some maintenance, but nothing serious, so overall it was a very good experience :)
Rented a 4x4 in April 2022
Awesome experience with Lava Car Rental. They were helpful and everything went well.
We will visit again in 2 years and for sure will rent an electric car. If Lava / Northbound could provide it by then, we will use yout services again.
Rented a 4x4 in April 2022
I have used Northbound twice and the second time was twice as good! This company gets 5 out of 5 from me!
Rented a 4x4 in March 2022
Smooth experience with Lava, booked via Northbound. We were easily able to amend our booking via email when we wanted to upgrade our insurance and add wifi. We were collected at the airport and after a short wait driven to the rental location. Car...
Rented a camper in March 2022
Une découverte pour nous de voyager en van et une expérience super . Tout était bien . Le seule point négatif c'est que nous avions pas pris l'assurance gravillon sur le van nous avons croisé un camion sur la route 1 qui nous as projeté un cailloux s...
Rented a 4x4 in February 2022
Northbound was a terrific company to use for your car rental. They made everything easy, the car was waiting for us when we arrived and it was easy to drive. The return was even easier. I wish the States could be as efficient with car rentals. Well d...
Rented a 4x4 in February 2022
Everything worked very well. The car was instantly available, no problems with the shuttle service, very nice shuttle driver. The car was clean and the tires seemed to be completely new. All in all an excellent experience!
I can recommend nor...
Comparing prices for rental cars in iceland
What to know before renting a car in Iceland
There are a lot of things to keep in mind before booking your rental car like; what insurances to purchase, which car rental to choose, what type of car is ideal, the pick-up procedures available, which reviews to trust and all the things you should familiarize yourself with.
Frequently Asked Questions
A few tips on driving in Iceland on any type of vehicle
- Where can I pick up my rental car?
- Normally, you can pick up your car hire at your hotel in Keflavik or Reykjavik, get it directly from the car rental office or have it delivered to you right at KEF Airport when you arrive.
- What are the best car rentals in Iceland?
- In 2017, we chose Lava Car Rental as our Car Rental of the Year and in 2018 the recipient was Star Car Rental. You can find vehicles from both of these rentals when you compare prices on Northbound.
- Are rental cars in Iceland expensive?
The average price for a 4x4 car hire in August 2019 was 869 EUR with no optional extras added. The average 4x4 price in December was 502 EUR.
See a full breakdown of the cheapest and most expensive times to visit Iceland in our Definitive Guide to Iceland Car Rentals.
- Iceland Car Rental Reviews
- The most important thing to check before booking your rental car is what other people are saying about the car rental. Make sure to read Google, Facebook and of course the Verified Reviews on Northbound.
- Icelandic Traffic Rules
Depending on where in the world you’re coming from, the traffic laws in Iceland might be different to what you expect. In Iceland, we drive on the right side of the road and the speed limits are 80-90 km/h outside towns and cities while 50-70 within cities. The speed limit is marked on each road.
Read more about Icelandic Traffic Rules here.
- International Driver’s License in Iceland
- In Iceland, you do not need an international driver’s license unless your domestic license may be hard to understand by the rental agents in Iceland. For example, if your license is written in simplified Chinese, Arabic or any other non-roman alphabet, then you will need to procure either an English version or an International license.
- Unlimited Mileage
- Most, if not all, car rentals in Iceland come with unlimited mileage included in the price. That means you’re free to drive the open road wherever it may take you, to explore everything Iceland has to offer. Keep in mind though, you are not permitted to leave the country with the rental car.
- Is fuel expensive in Iceland?
- In Iceland, the prices for petrol and diesel are very high and can take a toll on your budget if you don’t plan accordingly. Consider the fuel consumption of the rental car you choose and do some research to find the cheapest fuel prices in Iceland.
- What do I need to rent a car in Iceland?
To book your rental car, all you need is a credit card. When you arrive to claim the car you'll need:
- Your Northbound voucher / eVoucher, as proof of the chosen payment.
- The main driver's full, valid driving license which they've held for at least 6 months.
- Your passport and any other ID the car rental company needs to see.
- Any valid credit card in the driver’s name for excess/deposit purposes. Pre-paid credit cards are generally not accepted.
Conditions vary from individual car rental agencies so please make sure to read the car's terms and conditions.
- Do I need a 4x4 rental car in Iceland?
- That depends entirely on what you intend to do while you’re in Iceland. If you’re coming during winter then a 4x4 is the safest and most comfortable choice for handling the snow. It’s also a comfortable choice as you roam through the Icelandic roads, some of which are not paved and may prove a challenge for smaller vehicles.
- Are all fees and taxes included in the rental price?
- Yes. Mandatory insurances such as Collision Damage Waiver and Third Party Liability are always included in the rental price. All airport fees, road fees or local taxes are also included in the rental price. Some car rentals may even choose to include additional insurances or extras.
- Can I collect the rental car if I don’t have a credit card?
In most cases, no. The rental agency requires a valid credit card in the main driver’s name for excess/deposit purposes. This deposit ensures that the customer can cover any damage to the vehicle and / or equipment. Some rentals offer the alternative of placing up a deposit fee. Contact us and we’ll direct you to the right cars.
Please note that companies do not accept pre-paid credit cards on arrival for insurance purposes.
- Do rentals cars in Iceland have A/C?
- Most cars in Iceland do not have an AC in the traditional sense, simply because it’s not needed. Every car does come equipped with a heater, however, and you can adjust the temperature on that heater as suits you from the car’s dashboard.
- Can I book a rental car for someone else?
- Yes, as long as they meet all of the requirements made.
- Are there any additional charges that I must pay when I pick up my rental car?
If you have opted to pay the minimum deposit with Northbound then you will be charged the remaining amount when you arrive to pick up your car. Any extra items or insurances you add to the booking after you have arrived will then be charged along with the remaining amount.
If you have opted to pay the total price of the rental (100%) through the Northbound booking site then you will not have to pay for anything when you arrive to pick up your car, with the exception of anything you decide to add to your booking upon arrival. There will not be any hidden fees waiting for you when you arrive.
Frequently Asked Questions
Insurances for rental cars in Iceland explained
- What insurances should I get?
Every rental car in Iceland comes with the standard CDW and Third Party Liability insurance included. These insurances can carry a self-risk of up to 3,000 EUR which can be a lot of liability for someone to carry. In this case, you may like to upgrade the CDW insurance to a Super CDW, therefore lowering your self-risk amount significantly.
Other specialized insurances such as Gravel Protection or Sand and Ash Protection could also be great additions to protect against special circumstances such as gravel bombarding the car or even a sudden sandstorm raging through.
Read more about Gravel Protection or Sand and Ash Protection.
- Gravel Protection
Most of the roads in Iceland, outside of towns, are not paved. Even Route 1, Iceland’s longest and most driven road, isn’t fully paved. The Gravel Protection usually covers damages from gravel roads to the body of the car, the headlights, and the front windscreen.
- Sand and Ash Protection
We all remember the Eyjafjallajökull eruption. The fact is, loose ash and fine sand still cover much of the terrain in certain areas of Iceland. As the wind blows, the ash and sand may whirl up and blow towards anything and anyone unlucky enough to be in its path. This may cause serious damages to the car and gives it an undesired, matte finish. Icelandic insurance companies do not cover damages such as this in the regular CDW policies, which is why this protection is offered as an optional damage waiver, covering sand and ash damage to your rental car.
- Theft Protection
Iceland may be one of the safest countries in the world but, believe it or not, crime still happens here. The theft protection lowers the lessee’s self-risk down to 0 EUR in the case of vehicle theft. It may be worth it for the added peace of mind. Bear in mind though, in the case of gross negligence this protection may be void.
- Super Collision Damage Waiver
An upgrade to the standard Collision Damage Waiver, lowering the self-risk of the lessee considerably. Note: amounts may vary depending on which car rental you choose.
- Gravel Protection
- What is the cancellation policy?
Bookings can be cancelled free of charge for a full refund up to 48 hours before the start of the rental period. Bookings cancelled with less than 48 hours advance are subject to a cancellation fee equal to 15 - 20% of the total price, depending on the minimum required deposit for the rental.
For motorhome bookings, the following cancellation policy applies: Filling out our cancellation form and submitting a notice of cancellation with 30 days or more until your booking begins, will make you eligible for a full refund of your booking. Cancelling with less than 30 days until your booking begins will render your deposit nonrefundable.
If the vehicle cannot be picked up due to any of the following:
- Insufficient documentation
- Failure to provide a valid credit card containing sufficient funds to cover the deposit amount.
- Failure to collect the car at the specified time/date.
Frequently Asked Questions
F-Roads are special roads in Iceland that usually lead through the highlands
- F-roads in Iceland
The highland F-roads of Iceland have become increasingly popular throughout the years for those travelers that seek a bit of uncharted adventure and to escape the crowds of the more popular sights found along the ring road. Traveling an F-road can be demanding and even dangerous if you’re not properly prepared and behind the wheel of a suitable car.
Car rentals in Iceland will not permit you to take your regular car on F-roads but most will allow you to take a 4x4 rental there with the exception of a few of the more challenging roads like F249 to Þórsmörk.
Read our Guide to F-Roads in Iceland.
- Which F-Roads can I drive?
The highland F-roads in Iceland are many and varied. While some, like the F35, can be driven in any small 4x4 SUV others will involve deep rivers or rocky terrain and may thus require a bigger, more capable vehicle such as a Land Cruiser or a Ford Expedition. The best way to get familiar with which roads are suited to your vehicle would be asking beforehand or upon pick-up
Smaller 4x4's are generally suited for roads like F35 or Kaldidalur while the F206 and F26 will require a bit more firepower.
Whichever F-road you do venture on, remember to drive carefully and don't underestimate the rivers or roads.
Read our comprehensive F-roads Guide
- Can I drive highland roads with my rental car?
- If your vehicle is a 4x4 then in all likelihood it is Highland Capable, but some smaller 4x4’s are forbidden on F-roads. Certain roads, such as F249 in Þórsmörk, are usually forbidden to drive no matter what rental car you have chosen.
- Difference between F-road and off-road
F-roads are not off-road. Driving off-road is illegal in Iceland as you would be damaging terrain and landscape that can take several hundred years to grow back to its former state. Off-road driving can result in extremely high fines if caught. As F-roads are actual roads, only with more treacherous terrain than normal roads, they can be driven as long as you have the suitable vehicle necessary for them.
Read more about the differences between F-roads and going off-road.
- Can I drive off-road?
- No. Off-road driving is illegal in Iceland and will result in a fine, issued by police, of up to 100.000 ISK.
- Can I cross rivers and fords in my 4x4?
- This depends on which 4x4 you have chosen, which road you are taking and what rental you have rented from. The conditions vary, but if you contact us we may able to help you find the answers you seek.
- Still have questions?
- Visit our Help Center for answers to any questions you may have.