Iceland Here We Come!

At long last, we’ve done it. After booking, cancelling, rebooking, cancelling again, rebooking a third time and cancelling a third time, we’ve decided to change destinations for our long awaited next trip overseas. So, instead of discovering my wife’s family’s Austrian roots this year, we’re jetting off to Iceland in September. Given that Iceland now admits Americans who can show proof of vaccination from Covid-19, and we can, we’re comfortable that this trip will actually materialize.

Clearly, we have nothing to complain about with the delayed vacation planning. While we know a lot of people who have suffered from the virus, as well as a few whose lives were cut short, we have not been directly impacted healthwise and are thankful for that.

I’m finding that despite a 35-year career in the travel industry working in marketing and sales for several airlines and tour operators, that my travel planning skills have become a bit rusty. And it definitely doesn’t help that the Icelandic language is incredibly difficult to comprehend. Yes, English is widely spoken as the island country relies on visitors to fill their hotels and restaurants, as well as rent thousands of cars for personal exploration, but when I travel I attempt to speak as much of the local language as possible. It’s appreciated by the residents, is lots of fun to try, and helps make at least some Americans less “ugly”.

It will surely be interesting asking for directions to Kirkjubaejarklaustur, Jokulsargljufur or Tindfjallajokull, but that’s one of the joys of exploring the world.

Living in the Twin Cities, we are extremely fortunate to have a major Delta Air Lines hub just a 20 minute drive from home at the Minneapolis-St Paul International Airport (MSP). For virtually anywhere you’d like to fly to domestically, and to many international destinations including Tokyo, Amsterdam and Paris, we are just a single flight away from our destination. And Keflavik International Airport (KEF) which serves Iceland’s capital city of Reykjavik, is no exception.

Delta recently announced the return of daily 757-200 nonstops from MSP to KEF beginning the last week of May. Delta’s New York (JFK) to Iceland nonstops resumed this past weekend, and new Boston Logan International (BOS) flights will be added this month as well. Flight time from the Twin Cities is just over six hours, so the evening departure at 7:30 p.m. will arrive at Keflavik at 6:30 the next morning.

While I’m in the planning stages of what sites to see and hikes to experience, I’m open to any and all suggestions. Volcanoes, mud boils, geothermal streams and baths, whales, puffins….you name it, we’re interested. Thanks in advance for your input.

Published by iFlyMSP

After a 35-year travel industry career, the time has come to kick back and relax. Well, not exactly, but it is time to travel without a business schedule dictating where and when. Over the years I've traveled extensively by air for work, both domestically and internationally. I've been to some incredibly exciting and beautiful destinations, and some others, not so much. So now it's my turn (and hopefully yours), to explore the world at a more leisurely pace. Whether you want to discover the U.S. or another continent, the Minneapolis/St. Paul International Airport is a great starting point. And that's what this blog is all about. I'm not here to assist the rich and famous in figuring out how to best earn and utilize their millions of airline miles and hotel points. Instead, my focus will be on the average Joe and Josephine. Hard-working people (like you!) who have saved up over time for their once or twice a year escape from reality. So if you're contemplating a getaway from MSP or the Upper Midwest via the Twin Cities, you've come to the right place. Happy trails!

5 thoughts on “Iceland Here We Come!

  1. Congratulations! It’s going to be a great trip. I look forward to reading your post(s) about it. I wonder if Iceland still has that promotion whereby US travelers to Europe who take Iceland Air and connect in Iceland’s capital can have free nights if they extend the layover (I think that’s how it went). COVID may have changed all that.

    Listening to your philosophy about learning the local language (I concur) and seeing the complexity of Icelandic, I just have to share a post I wrote when I was trying to learn Welsh. I think you’ll be able to relate!

    Prepping for Travel: Learning Welsh

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes I can relate. I’ve been trying Portuguese for three years now with Duolingo. I can read it well enough to get the gist, but speaking it is another story. Thanks for sharing. I teach English to Chinese youngsters online several days each week. They know the language better than kids born here.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Thanks for following my blog Common Sense and Whiskey and good luck getting back in the air soon. I spend a lot of time on Iceland in my book about Arctic travel called Out in the Cold. A little history, a little travelogue. Happy travels!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. You also teach ESL! As you can see, I am waaaay behind on looking at emails, comments, etc. While I get some comments on the W site, most of what I receive comes via Twitter, where I post my blog articles to close to 5000 “followers”. Some get a handful of comments and others too many to deal with, but I do try to respond eventually, if deserved of course.

    Yes, I teach to Chinese kids at o’dark-30 my time…..typically 0530-0800 this time of year, and 0500-0700 during the dark months. They are so damned cute, and know more English at 5-8 years than our teenagers do. It’s sad but not surprising given their extreme focus on education. I am volunteer for a two hour weekly ESL class for Spanish speakers who have moved to Minnesota and want to better know the language. Adults in this case, and it’s a lot of fun. Hopefully it’ll go back to in-person classes this fall.

    When/where do you teach, and for how long?

    Liked by 1 person

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