Iceland Wants to Promote Sustainable Tourism by Encouraging Fewer Visitors to Take Longer Trips


The Icelandic authorities have said that the country wants to promote sustainable travel by encouraging slow tourism.

According to the official travel website of Iceland, Visit Iceland, sustainability is of prime importance when it comes to the global as well as the local welfare of ecosystems, communities, and cultures.

Thus, the country wants to encourage fewer people to take longer trips in the country and cool mass tourism trends, reports.

“With tourism being a fast-growing industry in Iceland, it’s crucial to encourage sustainable travel. Therefore, sustainability is a serious matter, but it doesn’t mean we have to stop doing fun things or enjoying life while travelling,” the statement of Visit Iceland reads.

Commenting on the matter, the Head of Visit Iceland, Sigríður Dögg Guðmundsdóttir, stressed that the country currently has an ongoing campaign called the ‘Icelandic Pledge’, which aims to encourage all visitors to travel responsibly while in Iceland.

Guðmundsdóttir further pointed out that among many others, the pledge includes a commitment to leave the places that visitors visit as they found them.

Apart from encouraging sustainable tourism, Iceland also plans to cut its carbon emission by 55 per cent by 2030 as well as aims to reach carbon neutrality no later than 2040.

While in the country, Visit Iceland, recommends that all visitors chose a sustainable means of transportation so that they compensate for their unavoidable emissions. In addition, the same encourages everyone to calculate their carbon footprint and to agree to be responsible tourists.

Previously, reported that Iceland registered a record-breaking number of tourist overnight stays in the first nine months of this year. Data provided by the Icelandic authorities show that the country registered a total of 7.1 million overnight stays from January until the end of September 2022.

Commenting on the figures, the Executive Director of the Tourism Association of Iceland, Jóhannes Þór Skúlasyn, said that the country had never before registered such a high number of overnight stays as in September. In September 2022, a total of 11,677 rooms were occupied.

In addition, the director emphasised that the country has noticed new tourism patterns this year compared to 2021 when stays in Iceland were longer. Moreover, he pointed out that the length of overnight stays by tourists is expected to decrease due to the economic situation in Europe and further in the world.

A total of 1.7 million tourists are anticipated to reach Iceland by the end of this year. As for 2023, the country predicts that it will welcome over 2.3 million tourists.

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