As the pandemic winds down, travel restrictions are finally being lifted, meaning your chance to travel the world once more is right around the corner. The most recent country to open up is Iceland, which will start allowing visitors from all over the world—including Americans—into the country starting today, March 18. The caveat: you need to prove that you've been fully vaccinated.
But the good news is if you have been vaccinated, you'll now be completely exempt from any testing or quarantine requirements. Previously, Iceland only admitted visitors from the European Union (EU) and European Economic Area (EEA), and they had to either prove that they had been vaccinated, prove that they had already contracted and recovered from COVID-19, or undergo testing and quarantine procedures.
“The world has been through a lot in the past twelve months, and we are all hoping for a slow and safe return to normalcy. This also includes the resumption of the opportunity to travel, which is valuable to culture, trade, and enterprise," Icelandic Prime Minister Katrín Jakobsdóttir said in a statement. "The decision to apply border exemptions for vaccinated individuals to countries outside the EU/EEA area is a logical extension of our current policy."
Iceland joins a small, but growing number of countries permitting entry to vaccinated travelers, regardless of where they're from. "When people are protected against the same disease, with the same vaccines that are produced by the same companies, there is no medical reason to discriminate on the basis of the location where the jab is administered," said Thórólfur Gudnason, Iceland's chief epidemiologist. "Our experience shows that the risk of infection from vaccinated individuals is very small or negligible."
Even if you're not vaccinated quite yet, you can still visit Iceland from May 1, as long as you present a negative PCR test upon arrival. You might also have to quarantine for five days, depending on whether or not you're coming from a low-risk country. In either case, it's time to dust off your passport and get ready to go!