Complete Guide for Tolls in Iceland

In principle, none of us object to the advantages toll roads bring. In some countries, opting to drive on toll roads rather than the back roads is a way of beating the traffic and reaching your destination much more quickly. But for travellers, navigating a new system of revenue collection can be a minefield. No one wants their holiday to be spoiled by a notification of a fine, so it’s best to be well prepared before getting behind the wheel of your rental camper in iceland. You certainly don’t want to wait until you see a toll booth to think about how you need to pay. Here’s what you need to know about tolls in Iceland.

car paying at a toll boot - tolls in Iceland

Do I need to pay a toll to use the ring road?

There’s an easy answer to this: no. As of the time of writing, there isn’t a single toll road in Iceland, meaning you can drive on any road toll-free. That’s not just the ring road, popular with visitors who rent a car, but also the country’s rugged F roads that criss cross the mountainous interior. The nation’s road authority, the Icelandic Road and Coastal Administration (IRCA), is responsible for a network of about 13000 km of roads, but doesn’t choose to recoup some of its expenditure on construction or maintenance via a toll system. That’s great news not only for locals but also for tourists who are planning an Icelandic road trip.

But there’s a catch

Unfortunately, there is one place in the country where you’ll need to pay a toll, and that’s in the north just east of Akureyri. The Vaðlaheiðargöng tunnel complements a stretch of road that traverses the Vaðlaheiði mountain pass. Instead of being forced to take the mountain pass road, drivers can now travel beneath Mount Vaðlaheiði rather than over it if they wish. Given Iceland’s propensity for inclement weather, road closures and delays while snowfalls were cleared used to be common.

Although, if you wish to pass through the Vaðlaheiðargöng tunnel and cut 16 km off the route that follows the ring road, it will cost you. This controversial civil engineering project ran considerably over budget and opened later than planned when it went opened in December 2018. The tolls went live at the start of January 2019.