One of the oldest Camper and Motor Home rental brands of Iceland
Camper Iceland is a well known brand in Iceland. My name is Daniel Johnson, and I am the founder of the brand Camper Iceland, owner of both Mjollnir GmbH and Camper Iceland Ehf. On this page, I want to tell you our story that lead to the brand Camper Iceland.
It all started with my parents, Regula and Jón Kjartansson. In the late 60ies, my mother worked at a governmental travel agency called “ferðaskrifstofa ríkisins” that translates to travel agency of the Icelandic government. At the same time, my father worked as a guide in Iceland next to studying in England. Needless to say, both my parents had a big knowledge background that allowed them to be excellent travel consultants for the destination Iceland. In 1979 my family moved to Switzerland, where my mother is originally from. When I was about 8 years old, a few smart Icelanders founded one of the first travel agency that specialized in the destination Iceland. They wanted to expand the travel agency brand to Switzerland and because Iceland has such a small population, basically everybody knows everybody, they asked my father if he was interested in joining them. At that time my father was a bank director in Switzerland and my mother had enough time at hand to start a venture. Two years later, in 1987, the first specialized travel agency for Iceland was opened in Switzerland by my parents. At first, it was at our home in a small corner, but quickly needed an own office in our hometown of Rudolfstetten. Back then the Icelandic tourism was almost non-existent and travelers could rent a Lada and sleep in the boarding schools that were closed for students during the summer. Because of the lack of transportation and accommodation, the idea came up to rent campers. In cooperation with family relatives, the first camper rental started in Iceland. During the 90ies, the Icelandic tourism kept growing slowly. After 2000 Iceland became more and more popular, especially thanks to Eyjafjallajökull that everybody seems to know and recall where they were when it erupted.
The rental company never really had an own brand because it operated for the travel agency only and was open from June until August every year. Many travelers enjoyed the Icelandic nature by traveling in one of our campers.
I had been assisting my parents ever since I was a child and of course knew the business very well. However, I had chosen a different path and worked first at the US Embassy as a security supervisor before joining the Swiss Army (Infantry, EOD, Military Police) where I still serve in the militia as a colonel of the military police. In 2005, I was asked to run the Icelandic rental company for two weeks to use my skills as a tactical teacher to evaluate the operation. The company was growing and needed a new perspective in leadership. As a result, I was asked to run the company as a CEO in late 2006. My first task was founding the brand Camper Iceland, and creating the first 4×4 Camper and Motor Home webpage of Iceland called camper.is. The company received badging and the brand name Camper Iceland has been used ever since. It changed from serving the Swiss travel agency to serve international travel agents and B2C. In 2018 Camper Iceland was by far the largest camper rental company with 180 vehicles on the road and over 20 vehicles on sale or reserve. A fleet over 200 vehicles.
During the pandemic, everything changed. We are very lucky and grateful that we managed to stay healthy, and our company was able to use its strength in vehicle import, repair shop and sales to serve the Icelandic market. Never before have we sold as many vehicles, but on the other hand the rental business was much smaller than before.
Today we have e renewed fleet and are happy that the rental market is slowly picking up.
I hope that you enjoyed our short version of the past two decades and invite you to look at our homepage camper.is. Furthermore, it would be my pleasure if our story inspired you to choose a family brand and visit Iceland.
With dearest regards
Dedicated and passionate travel product, for you.
We have tried many vehicle brands and travel products to be accomplish the best service in Iceland. We will continue to trial and error to adapt to a changing market.