Importation by individuals of medicinal products for personal use

General rules

All imports of medicinal products for personal use must be according to Regulation No. 212/1998 on importation by individuals of medicinal products for personal use, with later additions. It is the individual's responsibility to familiarize him/herself with the rules that apply for the import of medicines for personal use.

Importation by individuals from EEA States

What is permitted?

Individuals may import medicines for their own use in luggage and through the mail from European Economic Area (EEA) states if certain conditions are met.

Individuals may bring in their luggage medicinal products for his/her personal use in a quantity equivalent to no more than 100 days‘ use, this applies to medicinal products not classified as psychotropics, narcotics, anabolic steroids (and similar substances) or growth hormones (and similar substances).

Individuals traveling from countries within the Schengen Treaty may bring in their luggage equivalent to up to 30 days‘ use of medicinal products covered by the provisions of the Act and Regulations on Habit Forming and Narcotic Substances, and which are included on lists NI-NIV and PI-PIII of the International Convention on Psychotropic Substances of 1971 to which Iceland is a party. Individuals traveling from countries outside the Schengen Treaty may only take along medicinal products for 14 days‘ use

Medicinal products of the anabolic steroid type (anabolica) and similar substances, or pituitary and hypothalamic hormones, i.e. growth hormones and comparable substances, may be imported either as personal baggage or by mail in the quantity required by an individual for a maximum of 30 days.

Individuals planning to import medicinal products for personal use from EEA states must be able to produce a physician‘s certificate, a prescription or other written declaration, together with instructions for use, which provide satisfactory proof that the medicinal products have been acquired by legitimate means and that they are necessary to the individual in the amount specified.

The information stated above can be found in Articles 2, 3, 5 and 6 of the Regulation on importation by individuals of medicinal products for personal use, No. 212/1998 as amended by Regulation No. 233/2001.

What is not permitted?

Medicinal products covered by the provisions of the Act and Regulations on Habit Forming and Narcotic Substances, and which are included on lists NI-NIV and PI-PIII of the International Convention on Psychotropic Substances of 1971 to which Iceland is a party, cannot be imported to Iceland through the post.


The information stated above can be found in Article 5 of the Regulation on importation by individuals of medicinal products for personal use, No. 212/1998 as amended by Regulation No. 233/2001.

Supporting documents that may be needed

Individuals planning to import medicinal products for personal use from EEA states must be able to produce a physician‘s certificate, a prescription or other written declaration, together with instructions for use, which provide satisfactory proof that the medicinal products have been acquired by legitimate means and that they are necessary to the individual in the amount specified. The information stated above can be found in Article 2 of the Regulation on importation by individuals of medicinal products for personal use, No. 212/1998.

Importation by individuals from non-EEA States

What is permitted?

Individuals may import medicines for their own use in luggage from non-EEA states if certain conditions are met.


Individuals may bring in their luggage medicinal products for his/her personal use in a quantity equivalent to no more than 100 days‘ use, this applies to medicinal products not classified as psychotropics, narcotics, anabolic steroids (and similar substances) and growth hormones (and similar substances).

Individuals traveling from countries within the Schengen Treaty may bring in their luggage equivalent to up to 30 days‘ use of medicinal products covered by the provisions of the Act and Regulations on Habit Forming and Narcotic Substances, and which are included on lists NI-NIV and PI-PIII of the International Convention on Psychotropic Substances of 1971 to which Iceland is a party.
If individuals are traveling from countries outside the Schengen Treaty they may only take along medicinal products for 14 days‘ use.

Medicinal products of the anabolic steroid type (anabolica) and similar substances, or pituitary and hypothalamic hormones, i.e. growth hormones and comparable substances, may be imported as personal baggage in the quantity required by an individual for a maximum of 30 days.

Individuals planning to import medicinal products for personal use from EEA states must be able to produce a physician‘s certificate, a prescription or other written declaration, together with instructions for use, which provide satisfactory proof that the medicinal products have been acquired by legitimate means and that they are necessary to the individual in the amount specified.

The information stated above can be found in Articles 2, 4, 5, and 6 of the Regulation on importation by individuals of medicinal products for personal use, No. 212/1998 as amended by Regulation No. 233/2001.

What is not permitted?

Medicinal products cannot be imported through the post from non-EEA states.

The information stated above can be found in Article 4 of the Regulation on importation by individuals of medicinal products for personal use, No. 212/1998.

Supporting documents that may be needed.

Individuals planning to import medicinal products for personal use from non-EEA states must be able to produce a physician‘s certificate, a prescription or other written declaration, together with instructions for use, which provide satisfactory proof that the medicinal products have been acquired by legitimate means and that they are necessary to the individual in the amount specified.
The information stated above can be found in Article 2 of the Regulation on importation by individuals of medicinal products for personal use, No. 212/1998.

Exemption allowances

Exemptions

The Icelandic Medicines Agency has in exceptional circumstances, where life and health of an individual is deemed to be at risk, the authority to grant exemptions from Articles 3 – 5 of the Regulation.

What is covered by the exemption?

If a shipment containing medicines is held by customs and physician believes an individual‘s life will be at risk should they not receive the shipment, the individual can apply for an exemption from Articles 3 – 5 of the Regulation on importation by individuals of medicinal products for personal use, No. 212/1998.


These Articles apply to imports by post from countries outside the EEA, and imports of psychotropic and narcotic drugs by post.

The information stated above can be found in Article 6. of the Regulation on importation by individuals of medicinal products for personal use, No. 212/1998.

No exemptions can be made for the following:

Providing proof that the medicinal product was acquired by legitimate means.


Providing proof that these medicinal products are necessary to the individual in the quantity specified, e.g. by means of a physician‘s certificate. 

Providing instructions for use of the medicine, through written declaration or physician‘s certificate.

Import of medicinal products of the anabolic steroid type (anabolica) and similar substances, or pituitary and hypothalamic hormones, i.e. growth hormones and comparable substances in quantities greater than stated in Article 6 of the Regulation.

The information stated above can be found in Article 2. of the Regulation on importation by individuals of medicinal products for personal use, No. 212/1998.

How to apply for exemptions?

Applications for exemptions must be sent via email to [email protected], along with a physician's certificate with instructions for use, which provides satisfactory proof that the life and health of the person is at risk should they not receive the medicinal product in question. 

The IMA reserves the right to perform an independent evaluation of the validity of any physician's certificate it receives.

Before applying for exemptions measures should be taken to obtain the medicines through other means. Each exemption request will be individually evaluated by the IMA.

Regulations referenced above:

Article 2
Individuals may import medicinal products for their personal use, provided these medicinal products have been acquired by legitimate means for human use. An individual must be able to produce a physician‘s certificate, a prescription or other written declaration, together with instructions for use, which provide satisfactory proof that the medicinal products have been acquired by legitimate means and that they are necessary to the individual in the amount specified.


Article 3
An individual may take along, when entering Iceland, or import through the mail from European Economic Area (EEA) states, medicinal products for his/her personal use in a quantity equivalent to no more than 100 days‘ use.


Article 4
An individual may take along, when entering Iceland from states outside the EEA, medicinal products for his/her personal use in a quantity equivalent to no more than 100 days‘ use. Medicinal products may not be imported through the mail from states outside the EEA.


Article 5
[In the case of medicinal products covered by the provisions of the Act and Regulations on Habit Forming and Narcotic Substances, and which are included on lists N-I, N-II, N-III and N-IV of the Convention on Narcotic Drugs of 1961 and lists P-I, P-II and P-III of the International Convention on Psychotropic Substances of 1971 to which Iceland is a party, the following shall apply to their importation. An individual who is resident in a country which is a member of the Schengen Treaty may take along medicinal products, cf. paragraph 1, for personal use and which have been prescribed in a legitimate manner, equivalent to up to 30 days‘ use, in accordance with provisions of Article 75 of the Schengen Treaty, cf. also the provisions of the currently applicable Regulation on Habit Forming and Narcotic Substances and other substances subject to surveillance. 2 The same shall apply to individuals resident outside the Schengen area, except that they may only take along medicinal products for 14 days‘ use. Medicinal products covered by these provisions may not be imported through the mail.] 1) 1) Regulation No. 233/2001, Article 1.

 
Article 6
Medicinal products of the anabolic steroid type (anabolica) and similar substances covered by item c of the International Olympic Committee‘s list, or pituitary and hypothalamic hormones, i.e. growth hormones and comparable substances covered by item f in the International Olympic Committee‘s list of medicinal products which are prohibited in sports, may not be imported either as personal baggage or by other means in excess of the quantity required by an individual for a maximum of 30 days. Customs authorities may demand that an individual in possession of medicinal products covered by paragraph 1 produce satisfactory proof that these medicinal products are necessary to the individual in the quantity specified, e.g. by means of a physician‘s certificate.

Exemptions.
The Icelandic Medicines Control Agency may grant exemptions from the provisions of Articles 3. – 5., due to special circumstances, provided proof that a person's health or life is at risk.

EEA member states
The European Economic Area, abbreviated as EEA, consists of the Member States of the European Union (EU) (Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and The Netherlands) and three countries of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) (Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway).


Schengen countries
Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and The Netherlands.