From Iceland — Well, You Asked: A German, To Other Germans

Well, You Asked: A German, To Other Germans

Published August 5, 2021

Well, You Asked: A German, To Other Germans
Alina Maurer
Photo by
Art Bicnick

A German answers some questions from Germans. Stupid questions call for stupid answers. But well, you asked…

I’m a German tourist and currently in Iceland. I don’t want it to be obvious that I’m not from here. How can I fit in?

Well, just the fact that you’re of German descent is going to make it difficult. Not sure if it’s a certain look or behaviour, but recognizing us is quite easy. It’s all about the money for German creatures, so the first step to blend in is not being cheap. I know it’s hard. But Iceland is not a Turkish haggle market; you cannot succeed. Icelanders are sneaky enough to rip you off, while making you believe you made a good deal. One more thing, don’t you dare smuggle your own German food just to save some pennies. Broaden your Pretzel-horizon and try something new—you can have your wurst at home. Here we eat pylsur.

Step two for passing as an Icelander: Stop using tissues and start snorting mucus up your nose—best if it comes with a distinct sound. Also, always start your sentences with “Heyrðu” and loudly blurt out “Ha” if you didn’t quite catch something. It’ll convince even the toughest Viking.

Lastly, no hiking attire is allowed on Laugavegur. To be clear, the one downtown. There will be no avalanches or heavy river crossings on the main shopping street. Leave your “Jack Wolfskin” outfit at home—it is neither cool, nor stylish and never will be.

Why do I need to shower naked at the Icelandic pools? I don’t like being naked around strangers. What if they can see my privates?

Toughen up. Nobody is gonna look at you because everybody is too busy dealing with their own insecurities. Get over it and just freaking clean yourself. Nobody wants to sit in the same hot tub as you, when you’re crusty and haven’t cleaned your butt in a few days. If you still try to disobey, the pool shower guard might find you as they check for naughty tourists. They will yell at you, while Icelanders look with a disapproving look. It’s not worth it, buddy.

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