Cheap Student Accommodations in Iceland

women sharing headphone in a shared student housing

Embarking on a study journey is an exhilarating adventure. Iceland stands out as an extraordinary destination for students seeking unique educational opportunities. However, the expenses associated with living in a country can feel overwhelming especially when considering cheap student accommodation options.

Hence, this article aims to assist you in finding cheap student accommodations specifically tailored to student needs in Iceland ensuring that your academic experience is both accessible and enjoyable.

Why Study in Iceland?

Iceland boasts an environment with renowned universities amidst breath-taking natural landscapes. Hence, the nation’s commitment to education, innovation and sustainability attracts students from around the globe. To fully embrace this opportunity, it becomes paramount to secure affordable housing options.

The Importance of Cheap Accommodations

Cheap is not about saving money; it also includes creating a conducive living environment that enhances your academic endeavors. By availing priced accommodations, you can focus on your studies while exploring the wonders of Iceland without strain.

Types of Cheap Student Accommodations in Iceland 

1. University residence halls (on campus)

Many students choose to live in an on-campus dormitory, often called a dormitory or residence hall. On this note, many universities in Iceland offer residencies on their campuses that give students a sense of community.

However, many students choose to live in an on-campus dormitory, frequently called a dormitory or residence hall. More so, many universities in Iceland offer occupancies on their premises that give students a sense of community.  Each corridor of the hostel has ten to fifteen single apartments, which are mostly equipped with a television room and kitchen facilities.

Some apartments have erected- in bathrooms, while others have shared facilities in the hallway. It should be noted that male and female students can live in the same corridor.  

It’s important to note that university accommodation in Iceland is ‌administered by external agencies or foundations, with the minimum involvement of universities in their operations, except in certain cases where accommodation is needed for international students.  

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2. Shared Housing 

The house- sharing approach offers a life option for those who want to live more in the community and a little more privacy. These apartment- style units can have two to four bedrooms. In these groups, scholars share a living space, kitchen, and restroom. 

In addition, one-bedroom studio apartments are available for students who value their privacy.  Although utilities and maintenance costs are covered by students, laundry facilities are frequently provided free.

3. Off-Campus Student Housing

Some students settle for off-campus accommodation due to certain preferences or the limited space of on-campus housing. Still, this choice can be demanding, especially for beginners who may encounter waiting periods.  

In Iceland, house rentals are eased by technical agents who operate on a first- come, first- served basis. These agents act as intermediaries between landlords and tenants, handling all contractual and legal aspects.  

To expedite the process, students frequently lease apartments from existing contract holders, creating sub-contracts under the pre-existing residency agreements. This practice helps reduce long waiting periods, which can extend for weeks or even months.  

Rental fees include various utilities, including internet, water, electricity, and heating, depending on the terms agreed upon with the landlord.  

4. Homestays 

You can also arrange living with a family to enable you save costs and also immerse yourself in the original culture.  

5. Temporary Accommodation 

While searching for a housing option you can also consider temporary housing like Airbnb or guesthouses.

Rental Prices and Utility Costs

Monthly rental fees vary across different towns and cities in Iceland. You can anticipate rent for student housing or a single room in student accommodation to range from 2,500 ISK to 6,500 ISK.  

Smaller communities tend to offer more affordable options, but it’s important to seek housing close to your school. It is important also to note that Iceland’s winters are dark and frigid, lasting for months. This contributes to a lengthy commute, particularly during this period.  

How to Find Cheap Student Accommodations in Iceland

  • University Resources: Don’t forget to explore the housing options and resources provided by your university.
  • Local Websites and Forums: Websites like, and forums like Reddit can help you find private housing openings.
  • Networking with Fellow Students: Connect with fellow students who might be looking for roommates or have housing leads.
  • Work with a housing agency or real estate agency

What to Consider When Choosing Cheap Student Accommodations in Iceland

  • Location Considerations: Proximity to your university and essential amenities is pivotal.
  • Safety and Security: Ensure that your chosen accommodation provides a safe living environment.
  • Facilities and Utilities: Assess the included facilities and utilities to determine if they meet your requirement.

Process for Applying for Student Accommodations

  • Application Deadlines: Be aware of housing application deadlines, which may vary by university.
  • Required Documentation: Prepare necessary documents such as identification, evidence of registration/enrolment and financial statements.
  • University Acceptance Letter: You may need an acceptance letter from your university to secure accommodation.
  • Application Process: Familiarise yourself with the specific application process of your chosen accommodation.

Tips for Finding Cheap Student Accommodations in Iceland

  • Start your hunt beforehand to increase your chances of choosing suitable housing
  • Consider your budget precisely and prioritise your requirements/needs. 
  • Use social media and networking platforms to connect with other students.
  • Do not hesitate to reach out to university housing services for guidance.
  • Ensure open communication by regularly inquiring about the cost breakdown and any additional services included in your payment.

Challenges in Finding Cheap Student Accommodations in Iceland

As earlier mentioned, Iceland is a beautiful and unique country, but it can also be a very expensive place to live. This is especially true for students who are often on a tight budget. Hence, finding cheap student accommodation in Iceland can be a big challenge, but, it is possible with some planning and research.

Here are some challenges that students face when finding cheap accommodation in Iceland:

  • Limited supply: There is a limited supply of student accommodation in Iceland, especially in Reykjavik, the capital city. This means that there is often a lot of competition for places, and rents can be high. This therefore explains why student housing in Reykjavik and other top areas in Iceland are expensive.
  • High cost of living: The cost of living in Iceland is ‌high, and this includes housing. Even student accommodation can be expensive, especially if you are looking for a private room or apartment.
  • Language barrier: Icelandic is the official language of Iceland, and many landlords and rental agencies do not speak English. This can make it difficult for international students to find and secure accommodation.

Despite these challenges, there are a number of things that students can do to find cheap accommodation in Iceland. Here are some tips:

  • Start your search early
  • Be flexible with your location
  • Consider shared accommodation

Conclusion on Cheap Student Accommodations in Iceland

Studying in Iceland is a satisfying experience, and with the right approach, you can find cheap student accommodations that fit your budget and lifestyle. By planning ahead, networking, and considering your options, you can embark on your academic journey in Iceland with confidence.

FAQs on Cheap Student Accommodations in Iceland

1. Are there scholarships available to help with accommodation costs in Iceland?

Yes, some universities and organizations offer scholarships that may cover accommodation expenses. Check with your university’s financial aid office and explore external scholarship openings.

2. Can I work part-time in Iceland to support my accommodation costs?

Yes, as an international student, you can ‌work part-time in Iceland. However, it’s essential to understand the specific regulations and limitations obligatory by your visa.

3. How do I secure accommodation before arriving in Iceland as an international student?

Start your accommodation hunt beforehand, use online resources, and communicate with your university’s housing services. Secure housing before your arrival to ensure a smooth transition.

3. Are there any cultural norms I should be aware of when sharing accommodations with Icelandic students?

Respect for personal space and quiet hours is important. It’s a good idea to discuss prospects and boundaries with your roommates to ensure a harmonious living arrangement.

4. What are some popular websites to search for student accommodation in Iceland?

Some popular websites for finding student accommodation in Iceland include,, and Facebook groups dedicated to housing for students in Iceland.


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