Dating in Iceland
The dating life in Iceland has long been a heated discussion, but what is really true about the things people say about it? Where do people meet in Iceland and what are the dating rules in the country of ice and fire?
Find out about Icelandic Women: Do you get paid to marry them? What about gender equality? Who are some of the most famous Icelandic women? What is it like dating in Iceland? And so much more.
As an Icelandic woman myself, I can say that I have pretty much heard it all. The main truths, myths, or whatever you might like to call them, have to do with Icelandic women’s looks, their sexual behavior, or their equality. It isn’t so long ago that an airline I will not mention here advertised “Dirty Weekends in Iceland with a guaranteed one-night stand,” followed by flocks of bachelor groups and other interested travelers worldwide.
Some would say, of course, and you can’t blame them. I mean, Iceland has had four winners of the Miss World Competition and a world-renowned reputation for supermodel-looking beauty queens. Still, Icelandic women have gotten pretty sick of this passionate attention. Drunk tourists claiming their rights to a one-night stand with them and being utterly surprised when being turned down seems to be going on every weekend, every night even, and it has got to stop. Here is the real story of Icelandic women:
Iceland is a small country known for its feminist movements and strong justice seekers who are unafraid to beat the drums and march for their rights. When a movement is born, a new example being “Free the Nipple,” the wave hits Iceland quickly and efficiently. This can be positive in that it reaches a lot of attention fast but also negative in that things tend to be over abruptly, lost, and forgotten. To help remember, I will list a few memorable dates in the Icelandic Female History, the Icelandic Herstory.
The Icelandic naming system is quite fascinating. The majority of names today can be found in other countries, especially those who came with the Vikings or come from the bible but then there are others who were simply made after the arrival to Iceland. Some of those names are even popular like Ragnheiður and Þorgerður.
The most common first names in Iceland are:
The most common middle names for Icelandic women are:
Dating a woman from Iceland is often very laid back. You might have found each other at a bar, on Tinder, Instagram or sent her a message on any social media platform and started chatting. Don’t start by sending her a love poem or being too aggressive. Icelandic women are much more into getting to know someone on a more friendly basis and then deciding if it’s worth meeting up. Chill dates like grabbing a coffee, going for some jazz, sitting down with a beer and deck of cards, or having ice cream work perfectly.
The need to be independent is deeply encrypted into the Icelandic women’s psyche and persona. Maybe it was formed during the Viking Age, or maybe it is from the time that their men were all out at sea and they needed to take control, but no matter the reason, it is still, today, very present. So my advice to you, a person looking to date an Icelandic woman, is, “Be equal, be friendly, make them laugh, and don’t try to push anything.”
More about Dating in Iceland.
I am not sure where the stubborn tale originated, but it is, in all senses, not true. There is no shortage of men in Iceland, and no need to pay anyone to marry. Our social affairs are well in order, and no need for the government to step in. So, for once and for all, The Icelandic government is not under any circumstances paying men to marry women!
Iceland has time and again been chosen as the leading country for women in this world. It is very safe, has a low crime rate, offers equal pay for men and women, offers long maternity leaves for both parents and has had women in almost every leading role.
Still, it is not perfect, and there are victories to be won and wrongs that need to be made right.
The Icelandic nation has always been very open to women having authority and responsibility. In the Icelandic sagas, you can see female warriors and sailors, the most famous being Auður Djúpauðga, who sailed the open seas with her husband and slaves and settled in Iceland. She was the leader, the commander in chief, and there is no doubt about it when reading her tales.
Icelandic women are known for their fighter spirit, as is the whole nation who fought to survive on this isolated island in the north, and this spirit is not easily broken. As you can see on the timeline above, there have been many victories and even more not listed.
But as happens in most fights, there is a backlash at some point, and unfortunately, that has been true to the Icelandic equality movement. In 2018, the wage gap was measured at 11%, which was a big hit for the Icelandic nation and for the pride the Icelanders have had in their equal status. Fortunately, this was not something Icelanders would let slide, and have now pledged to eliminate the gender gap once and for all before 2022. Let’s hope it works!
Icelandic women are a blend of the past and the present. We're proud of our history, but we're also forward-looking. We value our traditions, but they do not bind us. We're fighters, thinkers, leaders, and, most importantly, we're women. So, the next time you think of Icelandic women, remember we're not just a stereotype but a legacy.
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Your questions answered. From the common misconceptions to the hard truths, here's everything you wanted to know about Icelandic women.
On average, Icelandic women are of medium height.
No, the gender ratio is roughly equal, with a slight male majority.
Dating culture in Iceland is casual, but people often date within their social circles. Learn more in our guide to dating in Iceland.
Icelanders have diverse looks, but many have fair skin, blue eyes, and blonde or light brown hair.
Yes, Icelandic women are known for their strong independence and have been pioneers in feminism.
Icelandic women value natural beauty and often prefer minimal makeup.
Yes, Icelandic women have been politically active, with the country having one of the world's first female presidents.
Iceland is a frontrunner in gender equality, and Icelandic women actively participate in movements and policies promoting equal men and women’s rights.