As with many countries, Iceland has seen a lot of change to the attitudes and laws towards smoking cigarettes since the beginning of the 21st century. If you are someone who enjoys smoking, you might want to understand more about the laws and etiquette for smoking in Reykjavik so that you are respectful towards the culture of the locals.
You might be interested to know that Iceland is the nation with the fewest smokers. A recent study found that less than 10% of Icelanders consider themselves to be daily smokers. A further 3% stated that they smoke on social occasions only. Iceland is similar to many other countries where a better lifestyle has affected peoples’ choice to not smoke, and the availability of vaping is giving Icelanders an alternative way to enjoy a similar act to smoking.
Here, we’ll tell you everything you need to know about smoking in Reykjavik.
Smoking Laws in Iceland
Smoking cigarettes is legal in Iceland. However, there are several laws concerning where people can smoke cigarettes which came into effect in June of 2007. Like many countries, in Iceland it is no longer legal to smoke inside any public buildings. This includes offices, shops, restaurants, bars, schools (including the grounds outdoors) and other similar buildings – basically anywhere that is not in the comfort of someone’s private home and where you may expose others to the effects of second-hand smoke.
To purchase cigarettes, you must be 18 years or older. Cigarettes can typically be found in grocery stores and newsagents, and sometimes at bars. Tobacco products are not allowed to be on display within Iceland, unless within a speciality tobacco store. Many popular brands of cigarettes are available, like Marlboro and Lucky Strikes, as well as many other brands, and they cost roughly 1050 ISK, or $10/£8 for a pack of 20.
In many cases, places like bars and restaurants have designated smoking areas outdoors where people who wish to smoke a cigarette can go. These areas typically have some sort of shelter and a way to dispose of cigarette butts so that they are not left on the ground – something nobody wants to see happen!
While smoking is becoming a smaller and smaller part of Icelandic life and culture, most locals are tolerant of smoking visitors so long as you do so respectfully. Here are a few tips to help you make sure you stay respectful while smoking in Iceland include:
-If you are in a busy outdoor area move away from people or ask them if they mind you smoking if it’s not possible to get away
-When in a restaurant or bar, ask the staff where the designated smoking area is located
-Avoid smoking in cars. Not only is this a distraction if you are driving, but it can disturb other passengers or make the car smell.
-Make sure to dispose of your cigarette butts in a respectful way. In Reykjavik, there are plenty of cigarette disposal bins where you can dispose of them.