Icelandic smokers spend a total of 14 billion ISK per year on tobacco products, and the average salary-earner who smokes a pack a day spends a month’s salary every year on cigarettes, Vísir reports.
A pack of cigarettes costs 900 ISK. Documents from the State Alcohol and Tobacco Store (ÁTVR) show that 14 million packs of cigarettes were sold last year. This adds up to 14 billion ISK spent on cigarettes alone – apart from pipe tobacco, cigars, and self-rolled cigarettes.
In context, it would be possible to run the police, the coast guard, the courts and the prisons on the amount of money spent just on cigarettes.
Those who smoke a pack a day spend 330,000 ISK each year. This is about a month’s salary for a well-paid salary earner.
About 37,000 Icelanders – just over 10% of the nation – call themselves smokers. This is a significant decrease from just 20 years ago, when about a third of the nation smoked. It is also beneath the national average in the US, where just under 20% of Americans smoke, according to figures from 2008.