Transatlantic airline Icelandair is bringing a new Buddy Hotline service to passengers that will connect interested parties with Buddy-worthy personalized travel recommendations. The service aims to support travelers during their trip to Iceland or in the planning of their trip by providing trusted advice from locals.

Travelers can directly connect with a Buddy by phone or via an online messenger, to receive the ultimate “insider” advice to make the most of their time in Iceland. From where to find the best fish restaurant in town, to where to discover a beautiful hidden spot for a picnic or enjoy a secluded geothermal hot pool, Icelandair's Buddies will have the answers and the solutions.
All Buddies are members of the Icelandair team. They have proved knowledgeable and passionate about promoting responsible tourism in the country.  

As many passengers polled noted a feeling of being overwhelmed by the travel planning process, and admitted feeling anxious, stressed, or even confused about what they should see or do during their trip, the Buddy concept seemed a natural fit. Those feelings are further exacerbated with trust in social media reviews standing at a new low.

From discovering hidden gems to experiencing authentic local culture, there is a growing appetite among travelers to explore the “real” location they're visiting. Travelers surveyed expressed interest in having direct access to local knowledge for a more authentic experience. In addition to seeking advice from locals, many want to feel like a native while in another country, with 49% wanting advice on shopping locally and 40% wanting insight in how to eat like a local in an attempt to travel more sustainably.      

"We know travelers are seeking more unique experiences guided by advice from trusted local sources,” said Bogi Nils Bogason, President & CEO Icelandair Group. “Our new Buddy Hotline service feeds this consumer appetite for 'insider' knowledge and is a great fit with our staff who, as Icelanders, have such a passion for warmly welcoming and hosting travelers from across the world."

A sample of recommendations by passionate Icelandair Buddies might include:

•Have an appetite for adventure? Guðlaug, a project manager, loves to get outdoors for a morning hike and can tell you where to enjoy some of Iceland's breathtaking landscapes

•In search of authentic Icelandic cuisine? Auður, a travel consultant, has his finger on the pulse of the hottest new spots to eat in town

•In need of some peace and tranquility? Sigríður, a flight attendant, is excited to share some of her favorite geothermal pools for passengers to relax and re-energize the Icelandic way

•Want to immerse yourself in Icelandic culture? Edda, a customer service supervisor, loves to discuss traditional Icelandic culture, partaking in knitting lopapeysa (a traditional Icelandic sweater) in her spare time

The Buddy Hotline is available to all Icelandair passengers to enjoy from April 10 – May 8, 2019. Contact: icelandair.com/BuddyHotline.