The number of overnight stays in Iceland in July 2021 increased by 26% compared with the same month last year. Thereof, overnight stays in hotels increased by 67%, in guesthouses by 28% and in other types of accommodation (campsites, cottages, etc.) by 14%. Compared with July 2019, there has been a 30% decrease in overnight stays. Thereof, there was a 26% decrease in hotels, 13% decrease in guesthouses, and 11% decrease in other types of accommodation.

Overnight stays in all accommodation in July 2021 were 1,095,000 compared with 869,000 in July the previous year. Icelanders accounted for 48% of all overnight stays, or 523,000, whereas foreign visitors accounted for 52%, or 572,000 stays. Overnight stays in hotels and guesthouses were 561,000 (thereof 378,000 in hotels), and 534.000 overnight stays were in other types of accommodation.

The number of hotel bedrooms increased by 15% in July 2021 compared with July the year before. Occupancy rate for hotel rooms was 69.4% in July 2021, which is an increase of 21.9 percentage points from July 2020.

There were 378,000 overnight stays in hotels in July and their number increased in all regions from July 2020. The greatest increase was in the Southwest, where overnight stays almost tripled, and in the Capital region where there was a 146% increase.

Overnight stays, supply and occupancy in hotels
  July August - July
Overnight stays in hotels20202021%2019-20202020-2021%
Capital region59,781147,123146%1,729,142433,713-75%
West and Westfjords27,36133,67923%192,205116,941-39%
Northwest and Northeast51,47255,5318%257,864193,206-25%
Foreign visitors94,225255,041171%2,649,335557,524-79%
  Number of hotel rooms in July Room occupancy rate in July
Supply and occupancy rates of hotel rooms20202021%20202021 pp
Capital region3,1843,99425%34.6%67.8%33.2
West and Westfjords8669125%54.1%64.2%10.1
Northwest and Northeast1,2131,2211%74.5%79.8%5.3

Overnight stays of Icelanders in hotels were 123,000, or 33% of overnight stays in hotels, whereas overnight stays of foreign tourists were 255,000 or 67%. There was a 171% increase in foreign overnight stays between years, whereas Icelandic overnight stays decreased by 7%.

In the 12-month period from August 2020 to July 2021, the number of overnight stays in hotels was 1,167,000, which is a 63% decrease from the prior 12-month period. The greatest decrease was in the Capital region, or 75%.

Data collection for the border study managed by Statistics Iceland and the Icelandic Tourist Board began again in June after a break due to Covid-19. Methodology for estimating unpaid overnight stays and overnight stays in home accommodation through peer-to-peer websites is currently under review and is expected to be reintroduced in the coming winter.

All numbers for 2021 are preliminary, except for hotel data which is preliminary for July 2021. Due to abrupt changes in supply and occupancy rates, estimation for other types of accommodation than hotels is currently subject to a higher degree of uncertainty than usual and should therefore be taken with a special precaution until final numbers are available.