Restaurant Waiter Work in Iceland 

You can work as a waiter in a restaurant or a hotel. Bartenders also can use this article for information. Thanks to my friends for helping me to write this article.

Restaurants in Iceland

The majority of the restaurants are located in Reykjavik, Kopavogur, Hafnarfjordur and Keflavik.

Work Schedule

Most of the work in the Iceland restaurant industry is 2-3-2 full-time jobs or it can be different from place to place. The worker has every right to see the shift plan.


Most of the restaurants are running in the evening from 17:00 to 22:00. If called on emergency, minimum of four hour work should be provided if you are on shift.

Waiter’s Unions in Iceland

If you are planning to work as a waiter, your union would be MATVIS or you would be under the EFLING UNION. Efling is the second biggest union in Iceland.

Salary Chart and Concept:


Winter vacation

Employees who work shifts, earn 12 winter holidays compared to annual work, for large county days and other holidays falling on Monday to Friday.

If the workplace is closed on the above days or vacation is taken, the corresponding number of days from the extra dips, except for an employee who owns an acquired shift.

Winter holidays shall be granted during the period from 1 October to 1 May. The deposit of winter days is based on October to October.

The employee may be granted an agreement and an employee to pay in place in question, 8 hours. In daytime work for each day off based on a full-time job. Personnel receives the acquired winter holidays up with retirement or contract termination whichever comes first.

Consumption break-in shift work at hotels and restaurants

Staff on an 8 hours shift should receive two coffee breaks totaling at least 35 minutes, which are considered working hours. Longer shifts should, in addition, receive coffee breakers, corresponding to 5 minutes. For each hour, and shall be admitted with one continuous coffee break.

Food break during a job in Iceland

Food should be provided one time during the working hours depending on the shift. Almost all of the restaurants are giving food before the shift starts. 

Bus/ Taxi

In case of public transport not working, restaurants should provide a Taxi for their staff.

Notice Period

The notice period on the general market:

During the first two weeks of work, there is no notice period.

After a two-week continuous job at the same employer: 12 calendar days.

After 3 months continuously in the work of the same employer: 1 month M.V. month.

After 2 years continuously in the work of the same employer: 2 months M.V. month

After 3 years continuously in the work of the same employer: 3 months M.V. month.

Explanation: If an employee who has worked with the employer continuously for two years, for example, has been terminated on March 12, then he has both the right and obligation to work for two months from the month of March / April, with his last working day on 31 May.

After 10 years of work with the same company, an employee will receive;

55 years of age – 4-month notice period M.V. month.

60 years of age – 5-month notice period M.V. month.

63 years of age – 6-month notice period M.V. month.

An employee may, however, cancel their work with three months’ notice.

Reforms shall be in writing.

The employer should pay acquired unpaid leave and this is usually done at the end of the notice period. The employer also needs to pay holiday and make decisions in accordance with the period of employment and employment during the year.

Sickness rights/sickness rights v. children

In the first year of business at the same employer, two days are paid on the substitutes for each requested month.

After a one-year continuous job at the same employer, one month will be paid with the substitutes.

After a two-year continuous job at the same employer, one month is paid with the substitutes and one month during the daytime.

After a three-year continuous job at the same employer, one month will be paid with the substitutes and two months on the daytime salary.

After a five-year continuous job at the same employer, one month will be paid by the deputy, one month with a full day of work (i.e. daytime work, bonuses, and shift layers), and two months per daytime salary.

Note. After 5 years of work with the same company, employees hold part of their sick leave, although they go to other jobs.

Sick law is the right of every 12-month period.

Sickness Law Because of Children

The first 6 months of work: 2 days for each processed month.

After 6 months of work: 12 days during each 12 month period.

Children’s illness is based on children under 13 years of age. Also applies to children under the age of 16 who need to be in hospital for one day or longer.

Vacation Rights on the General Market

Minimum leave is 24 business days. Vacation is 10.17% of all wages.

After 5 years in the same company or 10 years in the same profession, an employee shall have a 25-day vacation, and the vacation salary shall be 10.64%.

After 10 years in the same company, an employee shall have 30 days of vacation, and vacation pay shall be 13.04%.

Vacation rights are calculated from May 1 to April 30 each year. The summer vacation period is from May 2 to September 30.

Acquired right due to work in the same company is renewed after a three-year job with a new company.


It should be provided by the restaurant for the work. Most of the hotels are cleaning it for their staff.

Where to find a restaurant job in Iceland?




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About Author

Abhi Chauhan

The Restaurant Academy Professor. My studies in hospitality and experience of working in locations such as the USA, Switzerland, India and Iceland has equipped me with extensive knowledge concerning the restaurant industry and provision of the very best customer service. I have over 12 years of experience in the restaurant industry.

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