That Was Then, This Is Now
While cleaning out some of the archives, I came across some receipts from my first Iceland trip, in March of 2000. The package for two was $1200, pretty close to what you would pay now just for airfare. The 3 nights lodging was part of the package, with an additional upcharge of $156 for the fancy Hotel Borg, whose lowest-priced room is currently $545 a night!
The restaurant tab for a mid-priced meal for 2 with beer came to about $70, maybe a little high then, but about half of what it would cost now. We also ate at a fancy place, about $150 for two (with wine), that would be at least double that today. Figuring all our expenses, the cost of that 2000 trip was about $250 per person per day.
My last solo trip, in 2015, with some scrimping on food (made up for by concert, film and theater tickets) came in around $2,000 for six nights, or about $330 per day. After considering inflation that figure isn't much different than 2000. Recently, the Icelandic Kroner has jumped in value (after its currency controls were lifted) so that it is worth about 30% more than 2015, so the per day cost would be closer to $400.
While it is hard to compare prices over the span of 17 years, it is obvious that the biggest increase in the cost of a trip to Iceland is in lodging, which makes sense—there is an acute housing crisis in Reykjavík right now. My once-every-three year timing for trips to the “rock” looks like it will be disrupted next year although I’d love to go back—if only to to sit in the hot pots every the day and to see plays every night.