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COVID Testing Experience Returning from Iceland to the U.S

COVID Testing before returning to the U.S.

There has been a lot of discussion about COVID testing before returning to the U.S. We just returned to the States yesterday, July 17, and I thought I would share our experience. Your experience may differ and rules are changing constantly, but I know a lot of people have questions about the process.

We spent 12 days in Iceland driving the Ring Road. Eight days prior to leaving Iceland we went to and clicked on Order a Test. This testing site is only available in the city of Reykjavik and you can select a test and time slot up to one week in advance. (You can also get a test near the airport in Keflavik, but I don’t know about that process.)

Once you verify your email or phone number, you fill out your information and select either the PCR or Rapid Test. The Rapid Test is accepted in the United States and there is no need to do the PCR test which takes up to 24 hours for results. I just looked on my VISA and the Rapid test cost us $32.00 for each person.

The location of the test is at Sudurlandsbraut 34 in Reykjavik and is only about a 5 to 10 minute drive from downtown. We arrived about 30 minutes before our time slot and there was a very long line, but the line moved fast. When you get to the door you show a person the barcode that was emailed to you and they send you in one direction for a PCR test and another direction for the Rapid test. We were in and out in about 15 minutes. Our results we sent to us via email in about an hour.

When we arrived at the airport to check in, the agent asked us to show them this certificate which we presented on our phone. That was it. A few minutes before our plane landed in Seattle the flight attendant said we needed to show the results again as we left the plane, but this never happened. We just cleared customs and no one asked for the negative test.

I hope this helps.

Posted by
226 posts

Thanks so much for the info! I'm heading to Iceland in November with friends, and having the website will surely keep us up to date with the current requirements just prior to our trip.

Posted by
847 posts

Thank you for posting this info. It's very useful for those of us considering travel now to hear about other's experiences, even if they are constantly changing things.

Posted by
8 posts

This was my experience as well. In and out in 10-15 minutes despite line into the parking lot. Showed bar code. Got an email thirty minutes that all was clear. Iceland has it together.

Posted by
4272 posts

Adding that while the site recommends that foreigners select to pay in euros, the price in euros works out to be $35-36. Choose 4000 ISK for the lower $31-32 price.

Posted by
14 posts

Thanks for sharing this! I’m going to Iceland and been wondering about the rapid test coming back to US. This is very helpful.

Posted by
23 posts

Thank you for the information. We got our tests this morning (antigen). Like you said, there was quite a long line but it moved very fast and we were in and out in less than 15 minutes. Now we are all set to fly back in to Seattle tomorrow, which may be colder than Reykjavík!

Posted by
31025 posts

So the information from July is still current in December? Wow...