Iceland is a beautiful travel destination.
However, it is not known for being a cheap place to be.
One way to keep your costs low is by using a travel eSIM because international roaming can be crazy expensive.
So, how much do Icelandic (travel) eSIMs cost?
You can get an eSIM for Iceland for as low as 4.50 USD up to 99 USD from Airalo (with Nenna Mobile), Holafly & Nomad, offering between 1 GB and truly unlimited data.
There are some mobile operators who will charge you 100 USD for only 100 MB of roaming data, so these travel eSIM offers are much better than most international roaming deals.
In this guide, I will go over the eSIM options offered by the Icelandic mobile operators (if available), Airalo, Holafly & Nomad. Let's get started.
Original publication: 17th of August 2022. Last updated: 29th of November 2022.
Table of Contents
eSIMs offered by the Icelandic Mobile Operators
In order to get the best performance out there, it is often recommended to go directly with the local mobile operators because you will get a higher priority on the network compared to roaming.
Unfortunately, none of the mobile operators offer eSIMs to prepaid customers in Iceland (yet).
Travel eSIM providers Airalo (with Nenna Mobile), Holafly & Nomad offer attractive eSIMs for Iceland, allowing them to be set up before arriving in Iceland and activating them as soon as you land.
Very convenient, right? And I have used eSIMs from Airalo, Holafly & Nomad before, and I can assure you they work well!
So let's check out all the options, shall we?
Airalo eSIMs for Iceland (Nenna Mobile)
Airalo eSIMs are my favorite travel eSIMs out there because they are always good value for money compared to other travel eSIM providers (especially travel eSIMs not mentioned in this guide).
And the same can be said for the Nenna Mobile eSIM – 5 GB of data is available for only 13 USD.
The Nenna Mobile eSIM uses the Nova Iceland network.
So even if you go to some remote Icelandic town, although all of Iceland is remote anyway 🤪, you will still have reception with the Nenna Mobile eSIM.
Alright, you have three Icelandic Nenna Mobile eSIM options:
- Iceland/Nenna Mobile 1 GB eSIM for 7 days, costing 4.50 USD
- Iceland/Nenna Mobile 3 GB eSIM for 30 days, costing 9 USD – very popular with Phone Travel Wiz readers
- Iceland/Nenna Mobile 5 GB eSIM for 30 days, costing 13 USD – most popular with Phone Travel Wiz readers
When I say that the 3 GB & 5 GB variants are loved by Phone Travel Wiz readers, all readers get either the 3 GB or 5 GB variants.
So yeah, they are really popular.
The Airalo links will automatically get you the available Phone Travel Wiz exclusive offers – a code is unnecessary.
- Check out my Airalo eSIM reviews
Honestly, the Nenna Mobile eSIM gives you the best bang for your buck, and it is the eSIM I recommend the most for Iceland.
Airalo Nenna Mobile eSIM Pros
So, why should you get the Nenna Mobile eSIMs? Well, because of the following:
- You can purchase and set up your Nenna Mobile eSIM before arriving in Iceland (and activate it upon landing)
- You get full (up to 4G/LTE) access to Nova Iceland
- The eSIMs are affordable and have generous data allowances
- You can avoid expensive international roaming fees
But it is not all good news with Airalo though – there are some disadvantages.
Airalo Nenna Mobile eSIM Cons
So, why should you not get the Nenna Mobile eSIM?
- The Icelandic mobile operators have much more generous data allowances
- While you get access to Nova Iceland's network, your speeds will not be as fast as going with Nova Iceland itself because you will be roaming on their networks (and not be a native customer)
- There is no 5G NR access with the Nenna Mobile eSIM
- You cannot call or text with the Nenna Mobile eSIM (nor can you receive them – you get no (local) phone number)
- You cannot get in-person support (Airalo gets back to you by email fast, but you cannot visit an Airalo store because there are none)
Airalo Nenna Mobile eSIM Overall Thoughts
Overall, the Airalo Nenna Mobile eSIM is a great eSIM offering a lot for the money you pay (especially compared to many non-EU countries).
You get fast speeds and access to Nova Iceland without standing in queues or dealing with SIM card registration bureaucracy.
But if making actual phone calls and sending real text messages are important to you (so not through an app like WhatsApp), you may want to buy an Icelandic SIM card instead.
Holafly eSIMs for Iceland
The second eSIM provider I recommend is Holafly.
It started something revolutionary in June 2022.
Holafly offers unlimited data plans for Iceland, many other European Union member states & a few other countries.
From what I know, Holafly is the first to offer unlimited data plans for so many countries WITHOUT a Fair-Use Policy.
And that is super exciting!
Now, I have to say that the unlimited data plans offered by Holafly are more expensive than the Airalo Nenna Mobile eSIM or the eSIMs sold by Nomad.
But if you do not want to worry about data allowances, Holafly is the one to go for.
The Holafly eSIMs use the Sínimm & Nova Iceland network (as well).
If you remember from the Nenna Mobile section, you know you do not have to worry about Nova Iceland's network reception or speeds.
You have the following seven options with Holafly:
- Iceland unlimited data eSIM for 5 days, costing 19 USD/19 EUR/19 GBP/27 AUD/24 CAD
- Iceland unlimited data eSIM for 10 days, costing 34 USD/34 EUR/29 GBP/49 AUD/44 CAD
- Iceland unlimited data eSIM for 15 days, costing 47 USD/47 EUR/44 GBP/67 AUD/55 CAD
- Iceland unlimited data eSIM for 20 days, costing 54 USD/57 EUR/49 GBP/84 AUD/74 CAD
- Iceland unlimited data eSIM for 30 days, costing 64 USD/69 EUR/59 GBP/99 AUD/89 CAD
- Iceland unlimited data eSIM for 60 days, costing 84 USD/87 EUR/77 GBP/127 AUD/114 CAD
- Iceland unlimited data eSIM for 90 days, costing 99 USD/99 EUR/87 GBP/144 AUD/129 CAD
While I do not know which variant Phone Travel Wiz readers go with, I can tell you that the Holafly eSIMs are popular with those who simply do not want to worry about data caps.
And based on the emails I have received, the 20-, 30- & 60-day plans are popular because those who buy Holafly eSIMs tend to stay in Iceland for a prolonged period to explore the country.
As I recently started my collaboration with Holafly, it offers 5% off each purchase whenever you use code PHONETRAVELWIZ – how cool is that?
- Check out my Holafly reviews
Of course, there are some pros and cons with going with Holafly, so let's go over them.
Holafly Iceland eSIM Pros
So, why should you get the Holafly eSIMs? Well, because of the following:
- You can purchase and set up your Holafly Iceland eSIM before arriving in Iceland (and activate it upon landing)
- You get full (up to 4G/LTE) access on the Sínimm and Nova Iceland networks
- You do not have to deal with data caps because you get unlimited data (45 GB – here I come!)
- You can avoid expensive international roaming fees
But it is not all good news with Holafly though – there are some disadvantages.
Holafly Iceland eSIM eSIM Cons
So, why should you not get a Holafly Iceland eSIM?
- While the Icelandic mobile operators do not offer unlimited data plans (yet), their plans are much cheaper than Holafly
- While you get access to the Sínimm and Nova Iceland networks – your speeds will not be as fast as going with Sínimm and Nova Iceland itself because you will be roaming on their networks (and not be a native customer)
- There is no 5G NR access with the Holafly eSIM
- You cannot call or text with the Holafly eSIM (nor can you receive them – you get no (local) phone number)
- You cannot get in-person support (Holafly gets back to you by email fast, but you cannot visit an Holafly store because there are none)
- Holafly is the most expensive travel eSIM provider in this guide
Holafly Iceland eSIM Overall Thoughts
Overall, the Holafly Iceland eSIM is an excellent eSIM for those who hate data caps and just want to use data the way they want.
You get fast speeds and access to the Sínimm & Nova Iceland networks.
However, Holafly is the most expensive option in this guide and may not be the best for budget travelers.
Luckily, we still have one more Iceland-specific travel eSIM to go through, which is cheaper than Holafly.
Nomad eSIMs for Iceland
The last eSIM provider I recommend is Nomad.
Nomad is just in the middle.
But that does not mean Nomad is bad – not at all.
The Nomad Iceland eSIM uses the Truphone network, which is active in any country you can think of.
In Iceland, it uses a combination of networks, allowing your eSIM to switch to the network with the best reception automatically.
This way, you will always be connected!
Nomad is a bit more expensive than Airalo's Nenna Mobile eSIM but cheaper than Holafly.
That is because, unlike the other two eSIM providers, the Nomad Iceland eSIM uses a combination of several Icelandic networks (Sínimm, Nova Iceland & Vodafone Iceland), allowing you access to the best network at your location.
And for this feature, you pay a little more than Airalo, which only uses Nova Iceland.
You have the following four options with Nomad:
- Iceland 1 GB eSIM for 7 days, costing 6 USD/6 EUR/5 GBP/8 CAD
- Iceland 3 GB eSIM for 30 days, costing 12 USD/12 EUR/10 GBP/15.50 CAD – very popular with Phone Travel Wiz readers
- Iceland 5 GB eSIM for 30 days, costing 15 USD/15 EUR/12.50 GBP/19.50 CAD – most popular with Phone Travel Wiz readers
- Iceland 10 GB eSIM for 30 days, costing 26 USD/26 EUR/22 GBP/33.50 CAD
By the way, you can get 3 USD off of your first Nomad purchase by using code ADU123 – how cool is that?
- Check out my Nomad reviews
Of course, going with Nomad has some pros and cons, so let's go over them.
Nomad Iceland eSIM Pros
So, why should you get the Nomad eSIMs? Well, because of the following:
- You can purchase and set up your Nomad Iceland eSIM before arriving in Iceland (and activate it upon landing)
- You get full (up to 4G/LTE) access on all Icelandic networks, allowing you to have the best reception at all times
- The eSIMs are affordable and have generous data allowances
- You can avoid expensive international roaming fees
But it is not all good news with Nomad though – there are some disadvantages.
Nomad Iceland eSIM Cons
So, why should you not get a Nomad Iceland eSIM?
- While you get access to four networks, your speeds will not be as fast as going with the Icelandic mobile operators themselves because you will be roaming on their networks (and not be a native customer)
- There is no 5G NR access with the Nomad Iceland eSIM
- You cannot call or text with the Nomad Iceland eSIM (nor can you receive them – you get no (local) phone number)
- You cannot get in-person support (Nomad gets back to you by email fast, but you cannot visit a Nomad store because there are none)
- Airalo is cheaper than Nomad with all variants
Nomad Iceland eSIM Overall Thoughts
Overall, the Nomad eSIM is a great premium eSIM offering.
You will always have the best reception because the Nomad because it automatically switches to the best network at your location.
Moreover, the Nomad Iceland eSIMs will be cheaper than getting the SIM cards of the three Icelandic mobile operators.
However, just like the other travel eSIMs mentioned in this guide, you do not get a (local) phone number with the Nomad Iceland eSIM.
Moreover, Nomad is not the cheapest option out there (that would be Airalo).
Best eSIMs for in Europe (not just Iceland)
So what if you plan to visit neighboring Faroe Islands? Greenland? United Kingdom? Or any other country in the European Union?
Unfortunately, you cannot use your Airalo Nenna Mobile, Holafly Iceland, or Nomad Iceland eSIMs in any country than Iceland.
However, the three eSIM providers do have eSIMs covering all of the European Union and European Economic area + some other countries.
I highly recommend these Europe eSIMs if you plan to visit multiple European countries to save money!
The Eurolink eSIM is the most popular Airalo eSIM, per Phone Travel Wiz readers.
Most readers tend to visit multiple European countries, so they would rather have a travel eSIM covering multiple countries than just one (like Iceland).
The Eurolink eSIM can be used in 39 countries in Europe, including all nations in the European Union (EU).
The eSIM can be used from Iceland to Ukraine and Norway to Spain.
Below is a complete overview of countries the Eurolink eSIM works in:
- Austria 2
- Belgium 2
- Bulgaria 2
- Croatia 2
- Cyprus 2
- Denmark 2
- Estonia 2
- Finland 2
- Gibraltar 1
- Greece 2
- Ireland 2
- Italy 2
- Latvia 2
- Luxembourg 2
- Malta 2
- Poland 2
- Romania 2
- Spain 2
- Sweden 2
- Switzerland 2
- United Kingdom 2
1 on 3G only
2 (limited) 5G NR availability at no additional cost!
With the Eurolink eSIM, you can save a lot of money by skipping the initial SIM card costs per country you visit – averaging 10.78 USD/country in Europe (and get 5G NR access at no additional cost)!
Below is an overview of how much each Eurolink eSIM costs:
- Europe/Eurolink 1 GB eSIM for 7 day, costing 5 USD
- Europe/Eurolink 3 GB eSIM for 30 days, costing 13 USD – very popular with Phone Travel Wiz readers
- Europe/Eurolink 5 GB eSIM for 30 days, costing 20 USD – most popular with Phone Travel Wiz readers
- Europe/Eurolink 10 GB eSIM for 30 days, costing 37 USD – very popular with Phone Travel Wiz readers
- Europe/Eurolink 50 GB eSIM for 90 days, costing 100 USD
- Europe/Eurolink 100 GB eSIM for 180 days, costing 185 USD
Honestly, the Eurolink eSIM is my favorite Europe travel eSIM out there. Affordable, extensive & good value for your money.
I also used it during my 1-month tour throughout Europe in 12 countries.
- Check out my Airalo Eurolink eSIM review (tested in Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Hungary, Greece, Italy, Malta, the Netherlands, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia & Spain)
So yeah, you can say I have some experience with the Eurolink eSIM 😏.
Holafly & Nomad eSIMs for Europe
Holafly and Nomad also have eSIMs covering all of the European Union (and more).
But honestly, the Eurolink eSIM is superior (but you can consider the Holafly Europe eSIM if you want unlimited data in 30+ countries – just do not forget about code PHONETRAVELWIZ if you go with Holafly).
Overview of the Best eSIMs for Iceland (Airalo vs. Holafly vs. Nomad)
Unfortunately, none of the Icelandic mobile operators offer eSIMs to prepaid customers.
But that is fine – we discussed several other options in this guide!
In terms of the travel eSIMs, this would be my recommendation order:
- Airalo's Nenna Mobile Iceland eSIM (best value for money)
- Airalo's Eurolink Europe eSIM (best value for money when also visiting other European countries)
- Holafly Iceland eSIM (truly unlimited data plans at premium prices)
- Nomad Iceland eSIM (switches to the best network, allowing for excellent reception at all times)
- Holafly Europe eSIM (truly unlimited data plans when also visiting other European countries at premium prices)
- Nomad Europe eSIM (the best of both worlds in terms of pricing and performance)
Remember to use code PHONETRAVELWIZ for Holafly eSIMs and code ADU123 for Nomad eSIMs – a code is not necessary for Airalo eSIM purchases.
Buying a SIM Card in Iceland
Want to just use a SIM card but not your current one because roaming will be criminally expensive?
Consider getting an Icelandic SIM card instead – local SIM cards are the cheapest way to stay connected abroad.
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