Children and Pets

FamilyIceland is a prime place to raise children. Not only is it a relatively save country but also do authorities support families with children. Child benefits are paid for children up to the age of 18 years.

More information on child benefits.

Application for child benefits.

Womens participation rate at the job market is high and all municipalities subsidize child care.

All primary schools in Iceland are free of charge.

The City of Reykjavik and some other municipalities offer Leisure Activies Card, to subsidize sport and leisure for children.

Secondary schools are inexpensive and university study is almost free, only registration fee needs to paid. The amount varies between universities.

The Educational System in Iceland

The Icelandic school system consists of four stages: preschools/kindergartens, elementary/primary school, high school/secondary school and university. Of these, elementary/primary school is compulsory and free of charge. Further information can be found on the Ministry of Education‘s website.

Day parents provide care of children as young as six months old in private homes. Many parents choose this option for their children until they are old enough to attend preschool. Day parents are private operators who decide their own rates. Municipal authorities subsidise part of the cost if the day parent is licensed to operate by the authority. For more information, contact your local municipal office.

Further information and applications - Day Care Services in City of Reykjavik

Preschool  Children can attend preschool from 18 months of age until they start primary school at age 6. Some preschools accept children as young as 6 months. Municipalities subsidise part of the cost. Often there is a waiting list for a place at preschool; therefore parents are advised to apply as soon as possible. Applications can be submitted without the child's Icelandic ID number.

Further information and applications -  Preschools in City of Reykjavik

Preschool at the University of Iceland Campus

University of Iceland staff have access to one of the three preschools designated for students only. Mánagarður preschool at Eggertsgata 34 welcomes applications from staff as well, for children age 2-6.

Applications and more information.

Primary schools  By law, all children must attend primary school from age 6-16, or from grades 1 through 10. Primary schools are free of charge. Children are enrolled in the school nearest to their permanent residence, but parents may choose to have their children attend another school.

Further information and applications - Compulsory Schools in City of Reykjavik

Information on activities for kids, music lessons, recreational centres etc. can be found on City of Reykjavik website.

Leisure Activities Card offered by City of Reykjavik for all parents who have legal residency in Reykjavík. They will receive 35.000 ISK subsidy per child for their children's practice fees, aged 6-18 years This subsidy is called the Leisure Activities Card (Frístundakortið) and is designed to encourage participation of children and youngsters in recreational activities regardless of socio- or economic background.

Secondary school  Everyone who has completed a primary school education (or equivalent) may attend upper secondary school, usually from age 16-20. Attendance is not compulsory but students must pay a fee to attend, which can vary from school to school.

International Baccalaureate Studies in Iceland

Menntaskólinn við Hamrahlíð (MH) is a member school of the International Baccalaureate Organization (IBO) and offers a comprehensive pre-university curriculum that is taught in English and recognized by universities worldwide.

More information on MH IB Program can be found on the schools site.

University  Students wishing to attend university in Iceland must have an upper secondary school education or equivalent. There are seven institutions in Iceland that offer university-level education, including the University of Iceland. Fees vary between universities as some charge tuition fees while others charge only registration fees.

Further information on higher education in Iceland.

International Primary Schools in Reykjavik Area

One international primary school is operating in Reykjavik and one in Garðabær:

International Department of Landakotsskóli

Is a Camebridge accreditated school for children from the age five to sixteen.

Further information on the school, staff, accreditation can be found on the school webpage.


International School of Iceland

Is located in Garðabær, a municipality in the outskirt of Reykjavik. The school is a privately operated school that offers an international educational program to children from age six to 12 years. All imperative information can be found on the school webpage.


Bringing your Pets to Iceland

Iceland holds strong regulations on bringing pets to the country. All imperative information on it can be found at Pet Travel and Icelandic Food and Veterinary Authority.

Please notice, make an appointment in advance as the waiting list is long.



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