Going From Keflavik Airport To Reykjavik Is Pretty Simple!
Are you planning a trip to Iceland and wondering how to get from the airport to the city centre? You are definitely not alone. With Keflavik Airport (KEF) being the main international airport and the capital – Reykjavik – being about 45 minutes apart driving, you need to have a think aout how you will get between the two!
Luckily, thanks to the Iceland stopover flight we’ve visited Iceland numerous times over the years and have pretty good knowledge on the subject. For those looking for the best transfer from Keflavik Airport to Reykjavik, that will depend on when you land, who you are with, your plans in Iceland, and your budget – since Iceland is a very expensive country.
So, our guide outlines the different transport options from buses and taxis to private hire and rental cars. Whether you are looking for the cheapest bus from the airport or the popular transfer with Reykjavik Excursions, there are only so many transfer choices. It should be easy to pick the right one for you once you know the options!
If you’re travelling to Iceland (specifically, Reykjavik), here are some other posts to help you plan:
Table of Contents
Keflavik Airport To Reykjavik By Car
One of the simplest ways to get from Keflavik Airport to Reykjavik (and to your accommodation) is by car. Reykjavik is located about a 45-50 minute drive to the northeast from Keflavik Airport. The distance to drive is around 50 kilometres so not that far but also not super close.
Keflavik Airport to Reykjavik Self Drive
If you are hopping in a rental car, you basically just drive on Highway 41 most of the way from the airport. You can then take Highway 40 to 49 to head into the south end of downtown Reykjavik or stay on 41 for a slightly more scenic drive.
Highway 41 loops around/behind the city centre and comes back into it along the north end of downtown (driving along the water and ending up at the harbour).
Once you arrive, you can find public parking and/or park at your accommodation. Street parking is free after 6 pm and on Sundays. Other times (mainly throughout the normal day) you have to pay. If you plan to just park at your accommodation, be sure to double-check that your Reykjavik accommodation has parking available if you are renting a car!
Speaking of car rentals, the industry around car rentals is pretty robust now thanks to the tourism boom that started years ago. You can check here to compare rental car prices in Iceland.
Keflavik Airport to Reykjavik Rideshare
If you don’t want to rent a car and want to potentially find a cheaper option, you might think about requesting a rideshare. Since there are no formal companies (like Lyft or Uber) in Iceland, you can look on the local ride-sharing site Samferda to coordinate a ride. We’ve never used it but it’s the recommended way for locals so keep that as an option.
Keflavik Airport to Reykjavik Taxi/Private Transfer
If you are looking for convenience and don’t care too much about the costs (because you have a larger group or the budget to spend), then you might consider booking a private airport transfer to Reykjavik. There are two major ways to book this kind of private transfer: taxi or private company.
As you might already know, Iceland is an expensive country – and taxis are no exception to that rule. You can check out the official airport website for taxi companies and look at their airport transfer rates ahead of time.
There are a number of companies – like Hreyfill – which you can book in advance online or through their app. For reference, some taxi fares from Keflavik Airport to Reykjavik go for around 16,000 ISK (approx 103 Euro or 110 USD) one way and are usually for 1 to 4 people.
The downside to taxis is that they are significantly more expensive than buses but the upside is that they know when you land and can take you right to your place compared to some buses (see below).
If you don’t want to call for a cab, you can also rely on a number of private companies that specialize in airport transfers and other transfers around Reykjavik. One of the known ones is Private Hire Iceland which is well-regarded for its route offering, day trips, and overall quality of service. Their price is also only slightly more expensive than some of the taxis.
You can check here for a Private Hire transfer to Reykjavik from Keflavik Airport. If Private Hire’s regular service wasn’t enough, you can book their luxury airport transfer service here. It’s in a Mercedes-Benz, in case that matters to you.
Keflavik Airport To Reykjavik By Bus/Shuttle
One of the most popular ways to get from Keflavik Airport to Reykjavik is on a coach bus. This is partially because the large volumes of people visiting (with the tourism boom) needed an efficient and relatively affordable option to get from the airport to the city.
This is what Eric has done a number of times (with Flybus) and it worked well each time. These days, there are a number of companies you can book with to get you there and back. However, there are some differences between them that you need to consider when booking:
- All of the included coach transfers are from the airport to another main bus terminal (somewhere in Reykjavik). There is more than one bus terminal and you will end up at the terminal that is home to the bus company you book. Depending on where that location is, you can then walk from there or you can pay for a transfer (with the same company) on a smaller bus to be taken closer to your hotel/accommodation. We will break down where the specific companies drop you off and which prices are with and without this extra transfer to make it clear.
- If you are paying for a “to your door” transfer, be sure to read the fine print about where you can/will be dropped off. Once upon a time, buses used to go into the heart of Reykjavik for pick-up and drop-offs at hotels but it caused too many traffic headaches and backups for locals and visitors alike. So, as of a few years ago, buses can no longer stop/pick-up in the heart of the city. Instead, there are a number of specific bus stops around the city centre where they can stop. Additionally, buses can still pick-up/drop-off at a number of specific accommodations that are outside the heart of the city centre (and thus outside this “bus exclusion zone”).
Having said all of that, we’ll outline the different companies available, where they will drop you off, and how to book the extra transfer to your specific stop if possible.
Keflavik Airport to Reykjavik Bus Transfer with Flybus/Reykjavik Excursions
Arguably the most established of the coach transfers is with RE (Reykjavik Excursions) and their specific service Flybus. This is the company Eric has gone with and never had any problems in the past.
The difference for them is that they have a large fleet so there are many, many buses departing the airport all through the day. If your flight is delayed – which they often can be due to weather – you can just get on the next bus leaving. Not only that, but they also time their buses with the arrivals so it’s pretty reliable.
It’s advised to book in advance online but you can also walk up to the booth in the Arrivals Hall and buy a ticket on the spot. Eric did this once and it was great – but can see it being a long line in the busy season. As soon as you walk outside the coaches are right in front of you so it’s easy to hop on. Oh, and the coaches are nice and modern with Wifi to stay connected/check things on the fly.
After a 45 minute drive through the Icelandic countryside, you will arrive at their specific bus terminal: BSÍ Bus Terminal. This is a very popular terminal located just south of the city centre. You will be just a 10-minute walk from the massive church (Hallgrimskirkja) and thus close to downtown.
Address of BSÍ Bus Terminal: Vatnsmýrarvegur 10, 101 Reykjavík
If you purchase your Flybus ticket with accommodation transfer to your hotel/ accommodation, then you will be brought to the BSI Terminal above and switch to a minibus which will bring you to the closest bus stop or to your accommodation if possible. As with all the companies here, be sure to read the fine print for where exactly you can/will be dropped off in the city!
The transfer is usually pretty simple with various mini-buses/shuttles ready to grab people coming from the bigger coaches as soon as they pull in.
Keflavik Airport to Reykjavik Transfer with Airport Direct
Another company you can choose to book your airport transfer with is Airport Direct. They pride themselves on being a more premium company with a smaller fleet – and you cannot miss their buses because they are bright orange.
Similar to Flybus, the trip is about 45 minutes driving to Reykjavik. Airport Direct also has a coach option that brings you to their bus terminal which is not the same terminal as Flybus. From this terminal – also located in the south end of the city – you could walk in about 15 minutes to Hallgrimskirkja (the church close to downtown) or use the city bus to get to your accommodation.
Address of Airport Direct Bus Terminal: Skógarhlíð 10, 105 Reykjavík, Iceland
The other option with Airport Direct is to purchase a direct transfer from the airport to your accommodation or to the closest bus stop (if it is in the bus restricted area downtown). They use a smaller shuttle for these runs that have a maximum capacity of 8 people.
Understandably this option is a tad more expensive but if you do not want to have to transfer from large bus to small bus (like you would with Flybus) then this might be the transfer for you. Just be sure to read the fine print for where exactly you can/will be dropped off in the city!
Keflavik Airport to Reykjavik Transfer with Gray Line
The other company you can make the transfer with is Gray Line. If you know anything about Icelandic travel and tours, you’ll know that Gray Line is one of the main operators (and a good one, at that) that also offers an airport transfer service.
Gray Line basically does the same thing as the above companies but with the difference being that their main terminal is not the BSI Terminal nor the terminal for Airport Direct (both of which are relatively close to one another). The Gray Line Bus Terminal is in a different area in the northeast end of the city close-ish to downtown.
Address Gray Line Terminal: Klettagarðar 4, 104, Reykjavík, Iceland
From this terminal, depending on where you accommodation is located you could choose to walk, take a taxi, or take the city bus. Like the other companies, you could also pay for a direct transfer option to specific bus stops in the city or to accommodations if they are allowed.
⇒ Check here for a transfer with Gray Line to your accommodation/bus stop (choose the hotels option).
Again, just read the fine print for their specific drop-off/pick-up locations. Don’t assume it’s the same as for the other companies!
Keflavik Airport to Reykjavik Transfer On The City Bus
Likely the cheapest and a reliable option to get from Keflavik Airport to Reykjavik is on the city/country bus system. It is called Strætó and they have a great website in English for planning routes, checking prices, stops, and more.
To use the public bus (which Eric has ridden before and it was just like any other simple and reliable bus in any other European country), you follow Route #55. You can find the bus number 55 timetable here.
The bus stop is outside the Keflavik terminal in the rental car parking lot. The total time on the bus it a little slower than the above coaches at 1 hour 15 minutes.
You will arrive at BSI Bus Terminal and from there you can walk towards downtown. The big church (Hallgrimskirkja) is only 10 minutes from here. Overall, the price is more affordable than the options above at 1,920 ISk (around 12.30 Euro at the time of writing).
Address of BSÍ Bus Terminal: Vatnsmýrarvegur 10, 101 Reykjavík
And there you have it – a pretty detailed post on how to get from Keflavik Airport to Reykjavik. Again, there are lots of different options for all budgets so we’re confident you’ll find the one that works best for you and your trip purposes! Have fun in Iceland!
As always, Happy Keflavik to Reykjavik Waddlin’,
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