Coming from outside of the EEA/EFTA region

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EU/EFTA citizens are nationals of one of the member states of The European Union (EU)  or the European Free Trade Association (EFTA).


The member states are the following:


Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland.


Information for British citizens.

Accordion Content

Owing to international agreements, those who are not EEA/EFTA nationals must apply for a residence permit if they intend to stay in Iceland for longer than three months.  The Directorate of Immigrants issues the residence permit.


A permanent residence permit entails the right to a permanent stay in Iceland. As a general rule an applicant must have stayed in Iceland for four (4) years on grounds of a residence permit to be able to apply for a permanent residence permit.


Read more about resident permits and other things of concern for those coming from outside the EEA/EFTA region here.

If you intend to stay in Iceland longer than three months and you are a citizen of a country that is not an EEA/EFTA member state, you need a residence permit.  The Directorate of Immigrants issues the residence permit.


A necessary requirement for residence permit based on work is that a work permit has been granted by the Directorate of Labor.


More about working in Iceland here.

A residence permit based on family reunification is granted to the closest relative of a person residing in Iceland. The requirements and the rights of residence permits on grounds of family reunification can differ, depending on the kind of residence permit applied for.


Further information about residence permit based on family reunification can be found here.

Student’s residence permits are granted to the following:


  • Individuals intending to engage in full time studies at a University in Iceland.
  • Post graduate students from foreign Universities collaborating with an Icelandic University.
  • Exchange students from acknowledged exchange-student organizations. 
  • Interns.
  • Students in technical studies and recognized workplace studies at higher-education level.
  • Graduate looking for employment


More information for those who intend to study in Iceland here.

Do you have other reasons for moving to Iceland, maybe one of the following?


  • Special ties
  • Au pair
  • Volunteer
  • Missionary
  • Legitimate and special purpose


More information regarding this here.

A foreign citizen who has been domiciled in Iceland for a certain period of time and fulfills the requirements of the  Icelandic Nationality Act (No. 100/1952) / Lög um íslenskan ríkisborgararétt can submit an application for Icelandic citizenship.


More information Icelandic citizenship here.

All persons not holding valid Schengen visa in their travel document must apply for a visa at the applicable embassy/consulate before travelling to the Schengen area


More about this here.

Persons who are subject to persecution in their home country or face the risk of capital punishment, torture or inhumane or degrading treatment or penalty have the right to asylum as refugees in Iceland. An asylum seeker, who is not deemed to be a refugee, may be granted residence permit on humanitarian grounds provided strong arguments recommend this, such as serious illness or difficult circumstances in the home country.


More about seeking asylum in Iceland.


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