Reykjavík’s public transportation system offers a quick and inexpensive way to get around town. Since there are no trains or metro systems in Iceland, you only have to figure out how the city buses work. City buses are run by company Strætó and are easy to spot with their yellow colour. In this article, we will tell you everything you need to know about taking the bus in Reykjavík.
How to pay for the bus
If you want to make use of the bus, you need to have valid admission. In November 2021, Strætó introduced the KLAPP payment system in their buses. You have three ways to pay with KLAPP:
- With a top up KLAPP card. Top up your KLAPP card through your “My pages access” on klappid.is.
- With the KLAPP app. There’s Wi-Fi on city buses, so you don’t have to worry about your connectivity.
- With KLAPP ten, a ten ticket cardboard bus pass with code.
You can buy KLAPP cards and KLAPP ten at selected gas stations, convenience stores, museums, and swimming pools. For more information, go to klappid.is/en/sales.
A single ticket is valid for 75 minutes after the KLAPP card is validated on the bus. If you validate the card in another bus within 75 minutes, you will not be charged again.
You can also still pay the bus fare cash in the bus, but bus drivers can’t give change so make sure you have the exact amount. If you are planning to transfer to another bus and are not using KLAPP, you have to ask the driver for a transfer ticket which is valid for 75 minutes. In city buses you cannot pay with credit card or debit card.
You will be able to pay with old paper Strætó tickets on board Strætó buses until March 1, 2022. If you want to exchange old tickets for credit in the KLAPP system, you have until March 16, 2022 to do so.
Tips for going with the bus
Have your bus pass, card, or exact amount of cash ready. Signal the driver when you see the bus coming, so they know they have to stop. Food consumption is not allowed on board the bus, but you can bring drinks in closed containers. Bikes are permitted on board, as long as there is room on the bus, baby carriages and wheelchairs have priority over bikes. Use the back doors of the bus when leaving.
Where to find bus timetables
How to get around town at night
Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in Iceland, night buses have stopped running in Reykjavík and there are no plans to start them up again in the near future. If you need to get from A to B at night, taking a taxi is your best (and only) option. If you’re downtown, there are queues for taxis at Ingólfstorg and Lækjartorg squares. You can also stop them in the street if you see one with their lights on. Outside the city centre, it’s best to call a car. Taxis in Iceland are well regulated and clearly marked (with lights on top).
Buses that go out of town
Strætó has routes outside of the city, with destinations such as Akureyri, Hveragerði, Vík, and Jökulsárlón lagoon. Prices differ, depending on where you’re going, and buses going out of the city accept credit cards next to bus tickets and cash. It is generally not possible to reserve a seat, except for route 83 and 84. A Wi-Fi network and electrical sockets are available in buses driving in the countryside.
Unlimited bus travel in the capital area is included in the Reykjavík City Card
If you’re in Reykjavík and can’t wait to explore this amazing city, the first thing you should do is get yourself a Reykjavík City Card. The Reykjavík City Card offers free entry to some of the best museums and galleries in the city. Additionally, it includes access to Reykjavík’s thermal pools. The Reykjavík City Card also gives you free access to all city buses in Reykjavík. Purchase your Reykjavik City card online and pick it up at the What’s On tourist information office. The card is available for 24, 48, or 72 hours.