It’s expensive here, and it’s going to get even more expensive. The Icelandic government will introduce new fees to reduce inflation and the impact of tourism on wildlife.
To fight inflation, the Icelandic government plans to raise further taxes in the near future. According to plans, all the changes introduced are expected to improve the state treasury’s results by over 36 billion crowns next year. Some of the fees introduced will concern tourism. Taxes are intended to repair the budget and protect nature from excessive exploitation.
More and more tourists enjoying Icelandic nature
“Tourism in Iceland has grown almost exponentially over the last decade, and that has a significant impact on the climate,” Icelandic Prime Minister Katrin Jakobsdottir said in a Wednesday interview with Bloomberg Television from New York. Most foreign visitors visit Iceland’s untouched nature, which puts pressure on the authorities to act. One of the planned options to deal with the climate impact of increased travel is to increase taxes on visitors. Their height is not yet known, but it is known that initially they should not be too large. The speech includes: about the additional fee for cruise ships. According to Finance Minister Bjarni Benediktsson, the government should also consider the tourist tax for accommodation, which will be collected from each tourist, and the mandatory airport fee.
At a meeting of the Green council, the head of the council of ministers, Katrín Jakobsdóttir, announced that work on creating a national park on glaciers on public lands in the mountains will be accelerated as much as possible. The current government is halfway through the election period, so it is important that the creation of a national park is included in the program as soon as possible.
The new fees will improve the budget
Fighting inflation means for the Icelandic government giving up many planned expenses and looking for ways to plug the financial hole. The new fees are intended to help improve the state treasury’s performance. According to the Minister of Finance, the state wants to protect people at the bottom of the income ladder, where inflation hits the hardest.
Iceland is not the cheapest destination. A common way to visit its natural attractions is to rent a car or a camper and sleep in local guesthouses or tents. High prices of accommodation, food and paid attractions do not discourage tourists whose main goal is to commune with nature. It remains completely free for now, but perhaps not forever.