Quality Tourism Services

Vakinn's primary objective has consistently been to enhance quality, safety, and environmental consciousness within Icelandic tourism, while also fostering a culture of social responsibility among tourism enterprises. This focus aligns closely with the principles of sustainable tourism, which are deemed paramount in the industry

General quality criteria and activity specific criteria

The certification for tourism services other than accommodation is based on the following:

  1. General quality criteria applicable to all tourism providers.
  2. Specific quality criteria for each activity. A total of 30 sets of criteria exist, including criteria for guided walks in populated areas, criteria for riding tours and horse rentals, criteria for snowmobile tours and criteria for restaurants and cafés, to name a few. 


Sustainability is a crucial matter for Icelandic tourism. Implementing a quality and environmental certification can result in a competitive advantage in terms of sustainability.

Certified companies are audited once a year.

Quality and Sustainability matters

Success in tourism is often based on vigorous marketing activities. Little is to be gained by such efforts, however, if the guests actual experiences fall short of expectations. The internet, with social media, interactive venues and travel websites such as TripAdvisor, Facebook and Twitter has revolutionized the marketing landscape, providing consumers with rapidly expanding opportunities to voice their perspectives. When people make travel-related decisions they look increasingly for comments made by earlier visitors. What were their experiences? Did the trip live up to their expectations? Sustainability and quality matters are therefore important factors for the reputation of Icelandic tourism and Vakinn quality and environmental certification is an important tool when it comes to increasing quality. Quality and Environmental certification can also create a competitive advantage for companies.


  61% of foreign tourists in Iceland claim that it is important to their choice of tourist service company that the company has a recognised quality certification. 72% claim that an environmental certification is important or very important*

* A survey from the Icelandic Tourist Board among foreign tourist in Iceland during the winter of 2017-2018