Annual and Sustainability Report 2022


Icelandair Group's employees are one of the Company's greatest strategic assets. All employees are part of the same team and the Company's core values – passion, simplicity and responsibility – are the principles that guide the Company to maintain a strong and motivating company culture. Code of Ethics for Icelandair group can be found on Icelandair's website.


Number of employees

Our Icelandair route network is the heart of our business model but in addition we operate both leasing services through our subsidiary Loftleidir Icelandic and cargo services through Icelandair Cargo. These businesses allow us to improve the utilization of our infrastructure, fleet, crew and specialists. The year 2022 was defined by a sucessful ramp-up following the pandemic and around 1000 employees were recruited to the company.

2022 2021 2020 2019
Icelandair 2,853 1,869 2,208 3,451
Icelandair Cargo 83 86 77 91
Fjarvakur - Icelandair Shared Services* 131
Air Iceland Connect** 83 69 100 210
Loftleidir Icelandair 12 12 13 14
VITA 14 16 19 29
Icelandair Hotels (3*) 137 659
Iceland Travel (4*) 35 67 126
Icelandair Group (5*) 4
3,045 2,087 2,621 4,715

Competense development

It is imperative that our employees have and display a growth mindset where they are both willing and able to learn and develop so both may gain. To that end, Icelandair's People & Culture team has taken measures to supply its diverse employee groups with access to market leading learning and development material. By the same token, Icelandair upholds high safety and security standards and has in place detailed action plans designed to achieve these goals with mandatory training carried out for all employees working roles that are designated as part of aviation safety and work environment that is considered risk to occupational health and safety.

Regulatory training

The mandatory training is threefold, consisting of electronic, classroom theoretical, and practical components. The company has invested significant effort into developing e-teaching materials to complement the classroom training. This rigorous preparation helps to ensure that our staff are adequately trained to demonstrate their skills in practical training. The training of our aerodrome and technical employees varies according to their functions and is subject to different regulations.

General training

All new employees go through company orientation training which includes e-learning about the company, health and safety training and a one-day presentation tour to our main locations when they commence their employment with the company.

Approximately 20% of the company´s employees are not covered by air operations regulations. Nonetheless, Icelandair recognizes the importance of providing quality training and education that contributes to improving skills in the workplace. The employees perform a wide range of roles, and the company conducts a detailed needs analysis every year to assess their educational needs. In 2022 more than 80 courses were offered, with over 2,500 employees participating.

Every month, People & Culture present an ambitious training schedule for employees, which includes on-site and electronic courses. We have a wide range of e-courses available through our educational system, and we encourage our employees to use them for both personal and professional growth. Icelandair places great emphasis on excellent customer service and have been offering quality service training for many years.

Our training center provides high quality training, using innovative solutions with a focus on safety. We operate year-round and are proud of having one of the best equipped training centers in the airline industry. Currently, we are going through the most rapid growth in training volume in the history of the company. It is our mission to make sure the training supports our employees and brings new ones up to the expected standard so we can continue bringing the spirit of Iceland to our valued customers.

Sigrún Kolsöe

Director Training Center


Equal rights

Equal rights policy

One of Icelandair’s sustainability focus areas is gender equality. The Company emphasizes equality, diversity and non-discrimination. This focus, which ensures that all employees are provided with equal opportunities and equal rights, is an integral part of the Company's Equal Rights Policy and Equal Rights Plan.

The Company promotes equality by providing equal job opportunities and fairness for employees and job applicants. Rich emphasis is on building diverse teams and any discrimination is not tolerated. Diversity in our leadership team is especially important.

Gender ratio

Reykjavík Global Forum – Women Leaders

The annual Reykjavík Global Forum – Women Leaders is an event that brings together women leaders from all sectors and all continents, with the goal of creating positive, measurable change. As a country that ranks highly for closing the gender gap, Iceland is an ideal location for the forum. Gender equality is one of Icelandair’s core values, and we’re proud to sponsor and participate in such an important event.

Gender equlity objectives for 2025

Achieving gender equality across the Company's operations remains one of the Company's core focus areas when it comes to sustainability. The Company continues its efforts towards its long-term goals in this area. Icelandair Group has set targets in line with IATA's "25by25" equality project about gender equality within management, pilot positions, cabin crew positions and aircraft maintenance.

  • Never less than 40% of either gender in management positions
  • Increase the number of female pilot positions by 25% by 2025 compared to 2021
  • Increase the number of male cabin crew positions by 25% by 2025 compared to 2021
  • Increase the number of female aircraft maintenance technicians by promoting the job and education to girls

Equal opportunities and gender stereotypes

The first step to ensure equal opportunities is to reduce the impact of gender stereotypes by showing strong role models and introduce the jobs to female´s where women are underrepresented and to male´s where men are underrepresented. Icelandair needs to ensure that the roles offered at Icelandair are appealing and available for everyone. In the year 2022 the company added “a clause” to all job advertisements that Icelandair welcomes and encourages people of all genders to apply for all available jobs. Icelandair emphasizes to base decisions of recruitment, work conditions, distribution of work, delegation of working groups, training, and development on neutral and professional work methods, which are not influenced by gender, religion or origin and create diverse teams.

Icelandair has made considerable improvements when it comes to gender equality in recent years. In 2009 only one woman was a part of the Board of Directors and the Executive committe was comprised of only men. Today, women represent 40% of the Board of Directors, 33% of the Executive Management and 41% of overall management positions.

Gender ratio - management

Before Covid, Icelandair was among the airlines that had the highest proportion of female pilots in the world, or 12%, however the effects of Covid-19 changed the landscape for female pilots significantly and the proportion of female pilots had dropped to 5% in 2021 but with the successful ramp-up of Icelandair’s operations following the pandemic the proportion for 2022 is up to 11%.

Male cabin crew members were 5.3% 10 years ago but were up to % in 2019. During 2022 the company was able to continue to hire more men in seasonal cabin crew positions but averaged over the year the proportion was 14%. The gender balance within aircraft maintenance roles has not changed over time and is still over 99% men.

Female Pilots

Male cabin crew

The last commercial flight of the first female pilot

Sigríður Einarsdóttir flew her last flight as an Icelandair captain in December 2022, after 38 years flying for the company. Sigríður is a pioneer and paved the way by being Icelandair’s first female pilot. She started working in Icelandair’s domestic services in 1984, then moved to international flights and became captain in 1996.

For the first years, Sigríður was the only female pilots, but gradually more joined the team and in 2023, around 12-14% of the total number of pilots will be female. We have set ourselves the goal of equalizing the gender ratio as much as possible, and on that journey, it is very important to have role models.

We thank Sigríður for her contribution and for paving the way for other women in this field.


Equal Pay Policy

Icelandair implemented an equal pay policy in 2018. The purpose of the Equal Pay Policy is to ensure gender pay equality within the Company through the implementation of an Equal Pay System. Icelandair commits to ensure that equal wages are paid for jobs of equal value, irrespective of gender. Enforcement of the Policy and ensuring full observance of gender equality in decisions on wages is the responsibility of management. The Executive Board of Icelandair will annually establish equal pay objectives based on measurements derived from a pay analysis. Three companies within Icelandair Group, Icelandair, Icelandair Cargo and Flugfélag Íslands have been certified by a third party and received Equal pay certification in 2022. In 2022 the certification for the companies were combined in one and it was recertified for 2022-2025.


Gender pay ratio - regular earnings

Equal rights policy and plan

According to the Act on Equal Status and Rights Irrespective of Gender no. 150/2020 all companies and institutions that have 25 or more employees must make an Equality Plan or integrate equality matters into their personnel policies. The Company updated their Equality plan in 2022. The Equality Plan contains goals that are defined and a project execution plan where responsibilities and key steps are stated. The equality plan consists of more than 20 actions.


Health and safety

General health and well-being of Icelandair's employees is a priority where the Company is committed to providing an attractive and exciting place to work where people can thrive at their best. The Company has in place a comprehensive Health & Attendance Policy under which – among other things – Icelandair offers various health-related programs and initiatives to further its employee's health and wellbeing. Promoting good health among employees is high on the Company's agenda and initiatives have been launched with the overall aim of improving the well-being of all employees. Further to this the Company has a service agreement with Health Protection Service (Heilsuvernd) on confidential medical services ensuring employee's access to health care. In addition, increased emphasis has been on mental health awareness and to ensure employees´access to psychological services when needed.

Average no. of sick days per FTE

Special preventive arrangements were made to ensure the safety of all employees during the continued pandemic in the first months of 2022. The Company continued to make necessary changes to work schedules to ensure the safety of employees and to ensure that the Company complied with all rules and regulations, with regards to restrictions on gatherings of people, number limits, proximity limits and mask use.


The Company is proud of how its team of people has adapted to new hybrid work model based on the policy Flexible working @ Icelandair. The aim of the policy is to provide employees with the flexibility and opportunity to work remotely when the job does not require them to be onsite. In addition to increased flexibility and good work-life balance for employees, this policy also gives the Company an opportunity to recruit and employ the best talent for the organization irrespective of location and reduce carbon footprint by decreasing unnecessary transportation. The past year the Company continued emphasizing on strong communication and information flow from leadership and necessary support in remote working.

Employees satisfaction

Icelandair measures its working environment and cultural alignment both through regular monthly pulse surveys and also through an annual workplace audits. The 2022 audit showed that 54% of the employees were engaged. This means that the attitude of the majority of the employees was positive both towards their daily job and towards the company. The majority of the employees were therefore more productive and strive to develop themselves and the company. This critical element of the company culture is further supported with a high employee net promoter score of 21 out of 100 (comprised of percentage of promotors less percentage of detractors). These two important measures from the workplace audit both show and reinforce the efficacy and effectiveness of our People & Culture strategy.

Employee age distribution

There was a change in Icelandair's workforce age distribution between 2019 and 2020 caused by the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic as the Company had to let go of more than 2,000 valued employees. The change is most visible in the younger and older age groups. In 2021-2022 the age distribution is moving back to pre-Covid numbers. As the leading airline in Iceland and an important employer, a successful ramp up of its operations is crucial for Icelandic tourism, the economy and society at large. Icelandair transported around 740 thousand tourists to Iceland and recruited around 1,000 employees in 2022, bringing the number of FTEs to about 3,000 at year-end 2022.

At Icelandair, 97% of employees are covered by collective bargaining agreements, the flight operations unions have a tenure contract clause that means that the youngest pilots, cabin crew and aircraft maintenance technicians leave the company first. This deduces that the most senior employees are now working and when the company continues ramping up, employees are hired back in terms of previous tenure at the Company. Therefore, it will take time to reach balance with regards to diversity in the workforce.

Employee age distribution Male / Female 2022

Employee age distribution Male / Female 2021

Employee tenure

As Icelandair has historically been the only international airline operator based in Iceland there are consequently many jobs and roles that are industry specific and thus almost exclusively found in Icelandair. This means that employees in such jobs typically have a longer tenure with the Company than usual in the labour market in Iceland. However, this last year has been a turnaround year for the company after Covid so 50% of the workforce has been working for less than 7 years at the Company.

Employee tenure male/female

Employee turnover rates

The employee turnover rates at 8%, for the group as a whole after the effects of Covid remains very similar to 2021 at 7%.

Employee turnover rates 2021


rate for the group as a whole

Employee turnover rates 2022


rate for the group as a whole