Iceland is one of the top choices when it comes to offshore hosting locations. The country has become a popular place for data centers because of its stable Internet connection, privacy protection laws, and well-known support for net neutrality. On top of that, Iceland’s naturally cool environment is particularly useful when it comes to maintaining high-performance servers. Some of the biggest brands in the world have already invested in their own Iceland data centers — like Apple, Facebook, and Google, to name a few.
As a result, the data center industry in Iceland has been growing exponentially and is now responsible for almost 1% of the country’s GDP. However, if you are looking for an Iceland hosting provider for your business, you need to keep a few things in mind.
Iceland has a corporate income tax of 20% for LLC companies and 37.6% for other types of legal entities. Such high taxes mean that Iceland hosting providers may not be the most competitive in terms of pricing. If you’re looking for more affordable pricing options, you may want to look into other offshore locations, but more on that later.
When it comes to Iceland hosting providers, there are only a handful of reputable companies that offer high-quality services at competitive pricing.
Overall, while Iceland is a great place for offshore hosting, there are arguably better options out there. Later on in the article, we will provide you with our top picks for alternative offshore hosting locations. For now, let’s take a look at the factors that make Iceland a good location for offshore hosting.
Iceland’s Internet Is Outstanding
Iceland is the world leader in terms of fiber Internet deployment and usage. Almost everyone in the country enjoys a stable, high-speed Internet. Also, it is connected directly to both North America and the rest of Europe via submarine cables and fiber optics. Consequently, the ping from Iceland to New York City is exceptionally low.
In addition, it has strict privacy protection laws and strong views on freedom of expression. For most companies, Iceland acts as an offshore hosting haven.
Least but not last, Iceland’s unique location near the Arctic means that the country has low temperatures around the year. While this might not seem like a particularly important thing for most businesses, it’s an essential factor behind the growth of the Iceland hosting industry.
Lower temperatures mean that the data centers need to use less energy to power their servers. Coupled with the Iceland’s renewable power plants, the country’s hosting industry can pride itself as being one of the greenest industries in the world, with a minimal carbon footprint.
Privacy Protection & Censorship in Iceland
Iceland is one of the biggest supporters of net neutrality and online privacy for both its citizens and companies that choose to host their business there. A key piece of legislation called the Data Protection Act guarantees the safety of all personal data. Furthermore, the Equal Access to the Internet resolution of 2015 defines access to the Internet as a civil right. In addition, it partially prohibits censorship of online content.
Freedom of speech and expression is another field in which Iceland excels. The goal of the Modern Media Initiative of 2010 was to turn Iceland into a “haven for freedom of information, freedom of expression and of speech.” What it did, essentially, was turn the country into the perfect place for hosting online content that governments within the EU might want to shut down.
What Are the Best Iceland Hosting Providers?
Our team has done the needed research and came up with a list of the best Iceland hosting providers on the market right now. In contrast to other similar lists that aim to cram as many providers as possible, we took our time and hand-picked only the companies that stand out when it comes to quality of service and reliability.
You might remember that our 2020 list of best Iceland hosting providers had 10 entries. However, most of the companies we picked last year either went out of business or failed to meet our requirements to be included in the 2021 list. Our updated list for the new year contains only 3 Iceland hosting providers — according to our research, they are the best options that the market has to offer.
Here are the criteria we used to examine and rank our picks for the best Iceland offshore hosting companies in 2021:
- Server uptime
- Technical support
- Customer service & billing
- Bandwidth and network speed
- Price & value for money
Without further ado, let’s take a closer look at the Iceland hosting companies on our list and examine what each of them has to offer.
The Best Alternatives to Iceland for Offshore Hosting
Moving your website to an offshore hosting comes with a lot of benefits — data protection and anonymity, going around DMCA restrictions, and uploading the content you want without worrying about government censorship. Also, offshore hosting can save you some money on taxes and be quite cost-efficient in the long run. As we already mentioned, Iceland is only one of many countries that are perfect for offshore hosting companies. Other notable examples include Switzerland, the Netherlands, and Russia.
The Netherlands, for example, has some of the best data centers in the world and has strong free speech and data protection laws. On top of that, the Amsterdam Internet Exchange (AMS-IX) helps keep optimal levels of bandwidth, latency, and costs. For those and many other reasons, we can safely say that the Netherlands is a better offshore hosting location than Iceland.
In the next paragraphs, we will present you with our top picks for offshore hosting providers in general. Even though Iceland is an excellent option, take a look at the companies below — maybe you will reconsider your choice of location.
Pick Your Iceland Hosting Provider Today and Move Your Site Offshore
Hosting your website at an offshore location comes with many benefits. It allows you to host almost any type of content you wish, without having to worry about restrictions or laws in the EU or the USA. On top of that, offshore hosting usually comes with great speed, stability, customer support, and security. The providers we picked for our list have affordable plans that will be able to fit within every budget.
However, shared hosting is only suitable for smaller websites that do not require a lot of disk space or bandwidth. If your website is larger and generates a lot of traffic, we recommend you go with a VPS solution. It will provide you with better infrastructure and features that allow you to handle large amounts of incoming traffic. Check out our list of the best offshore hosting providers to see which companies we recommend.
This sums up our list of the best hosting providers in Iceland and other great offshore locations. If you are interested in learning more about what each company offers, we encourage you to check out the in-depth reviews we have on them. You will also find some insightful reviews from actual customers.