New Icelandic Ad Campaign Trots Out Email Replies While You Horse Around on Vacay

A new ad campaign is likely to have travellers chomping at the bit to visit Iceland. Tourism PR company Inspired by Iceland now invites travellers to “OutHorse” their emails—that is, reign in the common urge to work while on vacation and instead, relax, undistracted and unbothered, while a real Icelandic horse tölts out an email response for you on an enormous, equine keyboard.

Visitors can choose from one of three Icelandic horses, each with their own unique horsenality, to hoof up thoughtful replies. There’s Litla Stjarna (“Types fast, but might take a nap), Hekla, and Hrímnir (“Assertive. Efficient. Shiny hair”). “They are trained in corporate buzzwords,” explains actor Ólafur Darri Ólafsson (Trapped) in voiceover. “Your boss will never know the difference.”

This isn’t Inspired by Iceland’s first rodeo when it comes to employing quirky, zeitgeisty humour to encourage people to travel to Iceland. The company actually grew out of the eponymous 2010 ad campaign that put an ironic and optimist spin on the Eyjafjallajökull volcanic eruption. In 2020, during the global COVID-19 lockdown, they encouraged would-be travellers to “let it out,” and scream out their lockdown frustrations via speakers set up across the country. And, most recently, it skewered Mark Zuckerberg’s Metaverse, inviting visitors to come experience the country’s “immersive, open-world experience.”

If you’d like to join the herd of travellers capitalizing on this “revolutionary service,” gallop over to www.outhorseyouremail.com, and sign up.

Increase in COVID Admissions, But Infections Much Milder

Iceland National Hospital COVID-19

As many as 150 new cases of COVID-19 are being diagnosed every day in Iceland and the number of patients admitted to the hospital for COVID infection is also rising incrementally, RÚV reports. While there are a considerable number infections all throughout Iceland, however, Chief Epidemiologist Þórólfur Guðnason says that fortunately, these cases are much, much milder amongst those who are vaccinated.

Fortunate as well, says Þórólfur, is that the stress on Iceland’s health system is not nearly what it was at the height of the pandemic, when there were 88 patients in the COVID ward at once. There were only two people in Landspítali’s COVID ward at the start of May, which increased to nine patients on Thursday, and 16 on Friday. Admissions are mostly elderly patients and those with underlying conditions, but as the infections are not as acute, none of those currently in the hospital are on ventilators.

“There’s no doubt about it, of course we would have liked for the vaccine to prevent infection,” Þórólfur remarked. “It doesn’t do that, but what it does do, first and foremost, is prevent serious illness. If we didn’t have this widespread vaccination, particularly amongst older age groups, I think we’d have much worse infections and more people in the hospital.”