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International Travel

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Learn About Your Destination

Estonia

Estonia
Republic of Estonia
Exercise normal precautions in Estonia.

Reissued with obsolete COVID-19 page links removed.

Exercise normal precautions in Estonia.

Read the country information page for additional information on travel to Estonia.

If you decide to travel to Estonia:

 

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Embassy Messages

Alerts

Quick Facts

PASSPORT VALIDITY:


Should be valid for at least three months beyond your stay

BLANK PASSPORT PAGES:


One page per entry stamp

TOURIST VISA REQUIRED:


None

VACCINATIONS:


None

CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR ENTRY:


Maximum 10,000 USD

CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR EXIT:


Maximum 10,000 USD

Embassies and Consulates

U.S. Embassy Tallinn

Kentmanni 20
15099 Tallinn
Estonia
Telephone:
 +(372) 668-8128
Emergency After-Hours Telephone:  +(372) 668-8100
Fax: +(372) 668-8267
Email: ACSTallinn@state.gov

Entry, Exit and Visa Requirements

Estonia is a party to the Schengen Agreement.  Visit the Embassy of Estonia website for the most current visa information.

  • Passports should be valid for at least three months beyond the period of your stay.  However, please be advised that some Schengen countries may require six months of validity.  For further details about travel into and within Schengen countries, please see our Schengen fact sheet.
  • If you plan to stay in Estonia more than 90 days, you may apply for a longer term visa from the Consulate General of Estonia in New York (telephone 212-883-0636).  In some instances you may apply for a residency permit as a student once in Estonia.  You can find information on residency permits by visiting the Police & Border Guard’s website and clicking on “Services.”
  • You may also obtain additional information about Estonia from the Embassy of Estonia in Washington, DC (telephone 202-588-0101).

Traveling Through Europe:  If you are planning to visit or travel through European countries, you should be familiar with the requirements of the Schengen Agreement. 

  • Your passport should be valid for at least three months beyond the period of stay if you plan on transiting a Schengen country.  Review our U.S. Travelers in Europe page.    
  • You will need sufficient proof of funds and a return plane ticket.  
  • For additional information about visas for the Schengen area, see the Schengen Visa page.

HIV/AIDS Restrictions:  The U.S. Department of State is unaware of any HIV/AIDS entry restrictions for visitors to or foreign residents of Estonia.

Find information on dual nationalityprevention of international child abduction and customs regulations on our websites.

Safety and Security

Terrorism:  Terrorist groups and those inspired by such organizations are intent on attacking U.S. citizens abroad.  Terrorists are increasingly using less sophisticated methods of attack – including knives, firearms, and vehicles – to more effectively target crowds.  Frequently, their aim is unprotected or vulnerable targets, such as:

  • High-profile public events (sporting contests, political rallies, demonstrations, holiday events, celebratory gatherings, etc.)
  • Hotels, clubs, and restaurants frequented by tourists
  • Places of worship
  • Schools
  • Parks
  • Shopping malls and markets
  • Public transportation systems (including subways, buses, trains, and scheduled commercial flights)

The current Department of State Travel Advisory assesses Estonia at Level 1, indicating travelers should exercise normal precautions when coming to the country.  There is minimal risk from terrorism in Tallinn.  There are no known homegrown terrorist organizations in Estonia, which is not a known base of support/sympathy for terrorists.

Credible information indicates terrorist groups continue plotting possible attacks in Europe.  European governments are taking action to guard against terrorist attacks.  All European countries remain potentially vulnerable to attacks from transnational terrorist organizations. 

For more information, see our Terrorism page.

Crime:  There is minimal risk from crime in Estonia.  Pickpocketing, theft, and petty crime do occur, particularly in crowded areas and areas where tourists and foreigners congregate.  Pickpockets use various diversionary tactics to distract victims; one method involves bumping the victim in an effort to draw their attention to one individual, while another takes their wallet.  Victims should report the crime to the police and cancel their credit cards as soon as possible.

The majority of incidents affecting U.S. citizens involve individuals who are alone and/or intoxicated at night.  Visitors who consume alcohol should exercise moderation and designate a sober member of the group to be in charge of security awareness.  Statistics indicate incidents against individuals based on race, religion, or sexual orientation/gender identity are limited; however the Embassy has received reports of U.S. citizens being harassed due to their race.

Demonstrations:  Large demonstrations occur infrequently.  They may take place in response to political or economic issues, on politically significant holidays, and during international events.  Demonstrations can be unpredictable and U.S. citizens should exercise caution if within the vicinity of any demonstrations.  Check local media for updates and traffic advisories.

International Financial Scams:  See the Department of State and the FBI pages for information.

Internet romance and financial scams are prevalent in Estonia.  Scams are often initiated through Internet postings/profiles or by unsolicited emails and letters.  Scammers almost always pose as U.S. citizens who have no one else to turn to for help.  Common scams include:

  • Romance/Online dating
  • Money transfers
  • Lucrative sales
  • Gold purchase
  • Contracts with promises of large commissions
  • Grandparent/Relative targeting
  • Free Trip/Luggage
  • Lotteries
  • Inheritance notices
  • Work permits/job offers
  • Bank overpayments

Victims of Crime:  U.S. citizen victims of sexual assault are encouraged to contact the U.S. Embassy for assistance.  Report crimes to the local police at 112 and contact the U.S. Embassy at +(372) 668-8128.  Victims of crime may also call 116 006 to contact Estonia’s Social Insurance Board’s Victim Support and Prevention Services Department to speak to a victim support worker.  For social welfare emergencies, such as domestic violence or child abuse, dial 112 (English-speaking operators are sometimes available).  Remember that local authorities are responsible for investigating and prosecuting the crime.

See our webpage on help for U.S. victims of crime overseas.

We can:

  • Help you find appropriate medical care
  • Assist you in reporting a crime to the police
  • Contact relatives or friends with your written consent
  • Provide general information regarding the victim’s role during the local investigation and following its conclusion 
  • Provide a list of local attorneys
  • Provide our information on victim’s compensation programs in the United States
  • Assist you with a list of non-governmental organizations and centers providing a number of programs for victims of crime in Estonia. Please see our website for more information.
  • Provide an emergency loan for repatriation to the United States and/or limited medical support in cases of destitution
  • Help you find accommodation and arrange flights home
  • Replace a stolen or lost passport

The local equivalent to the “911” emergency line for police, ambulance, or fire in Estonia is 112.  Many, but not all, operators speak English.

Domestic Violence:  U.S. citizen victims of domestic violence are encouraged to contact the Embassy for assistance.

Tourism:  The tourism industry is generally regulated and rules [with regards to best practices and safety inspections] are regularly enforced.  Hazardous areas/activities are identified with appropriate signage and professional staff is typically on hand in support of organized activities.  In the event of an injury, appropriate medical treatment is widely available throughout the country.  Outside of a major metropolitan center, it may take more time for first responders and medical professionals to stabilize a patient and provide life-saving assistance.  U.S. citizens are encouraged to purchase medical evacuation insurance.  

Local Laws & Special Circumstances

Criminal Penalties:  You are subject to local laws.  If you violate local laws, even unknowingly, you may be expelled, arrested, or imprisoned.  Individuals establishing a business or practicing a profession that requires additional permits or licensing should seek information from the competent local authorities, prior to practicing or operating a business.

The Estonian legal system takes a zero-tolerance approach to driving under the influence and even one drink can lead to a DUI arrest and could immediately land you in jail.

In Estonia, everyone is required by law to wear small reflectors on clothing when it is dark outside.  Fines for refusing to wear the reflectors range from $50 to $500.

Special Circumstances:  Estonia is part of the Eurozone and only euros are accepted.

  • Bank and currency exchange counters may refuse to accept U.S. currency that is crumpled, torn, discolored, or defaced.
  • ATMs are widely available in Tallinn and in major towns.
  • Contact the Embassy of Estonia in Washington for specific information regarding customs requirements.

Furthermore, some laws are also prosecutable in the United States, regardless of local law.  For examples, see our website on crimes against minors abroad and the Department of Justice website.

Arrest Notification:  If you are arrested, you should ask police or prison officials to notify the U.S. Embassy immediately.  See our webpage for further information.

  • Driving under the influence could land you immediately in jail.  In Estonia, the legal system takes a zero-tolerance approach, and even one drink can lead to a DUI arrest.
  • Your U.S. passport will not help you avoid arrest or prosecution.

Counterfeit and Pirated Goods:  Although counterfeit and pirated goods are prevalent in many countries, they may still be illegal according to local laws.  You may also pay fines or have to give them up if you bring them back to the United States.  See the U.S. Department of Justice website for more information.

Faith-Based Travelers:  See our following webpages for details:

LGBTQI+ Travelers:  There are no legal restrictions on same-sex sexual relations or the organization of LGBTQI+ events in Estonia.  Estonian law prohibits discrimination on the basis of gender, sexual orientation, or other personal characteristics, and the government generally respects these prohibitions.  While the law is not specific regarding the forms of sexual orientation and gender identity covered, in practice all are understood to be included.  However, social acceptance of LGBTQI+ identity in public is not as prevalent as in the United States.

  • LGBTQI+ travelers should consider exercising caution when visiting Estonia, especially when expressing affection in public, as local advocacy groups report incidents of verbal or physical assault based on perceived LGBTQI+ identity.
  • See the English-language website of the Estonian visitor’s bureau for specific information regarding the LGBTQI+ community in Estonia.
  • See our LGBTQI+ Travel Information page and section 6 of our Human Rights report for further details.

Travelers with Disabilities:  The law in Estonia prohibits discrimination against persons with physical, sensory, intellectual or mental disabilities, and the law is enforced.  Social acceptance of persons with disabilities in public is not as prevalent as in the United States.  Expect accessibility to be limited in public transportation, lodging, communication/information, and general infrastructure.

  • Estonia has few English language speaking medical interpreters, personal assistants, etc. as well as limited availability of specialized medical equipment.

Students: See our Students Abroad page and FBI travel tips.

Women Travelers: See our travel tips for Women Travelers.

Health

Medical care in Estonia falls short of Western standards outside the larger cities such as Tallinn, Tartu, and Pärnu.  Many medical professionals in Estonia are highly-trained, but some hospitals and clinics still suffer from a lack of equipment and resources.  Many doctors speak at least some English but most nursing staff speak only Russian or Estonian.

For emergency services in Estonia, dial 112. 

Ambulance services are widely available. 

We do not pay medical bills.  Be aware that U.S. Medicare does not apply overseas.  Most hospitals and doctors overseas do not accept U.S. health insurance. 

Medical Insurance:  Make sure your health insurance plan provides coverage overseas.  Most care providers overseas only accept cash or credit card payments.  See our webpage for more information on insurance coverage overseas.  Visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for more information on type of insurance you should consider before you travel overseas. 

We strongly recommend supplemental insurance to cover medical evacuation.

Always carry your prescription medication in original packaging, along with your doctor’s prescription.  Check with the Estonian Agency of Medicines to ensure the medication is legal in Estonia. 

Vaccinations:  Be up-to-date on all vaccinations recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Further health information:

Air Quality:  Visit AirNow Department of State for information on air quality at U.S. Embassies and Consulates.

The U.S. Embassy maintains a list of doctors and hospitals.  We do not endorse or recommend any specific medical provider or clinic. 

General Health Information:

The following diseases are prevalent:

  • Like much of Europe, outbreaks of measles are frequent in Estonia and travelers should have two documented doses of MMR vaccine prior to traveling.
  • Tick-borne encephalitis (TBE) and Lyme-disease are widespread throughout the country.  Use CDC recommended insect repellents containing either 20% DEET, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus or IR3535 to help diminish bites from ticks and other insects if you intend to visit parks or forested areas (even within parks in Tallinn).  Those who will be camping or have prolonged outdoor exposure should pretreat clothing and equipment with permethrin.
  • There are no vaccines against Lyme disease.

Travel and Transportation

Road Conditions and Safety:  Estonian roads and highways can be icy and dangerous during winter months and some rural roads are unpaved. Falling large icicles from buildings, in addition to slippery roads and sidewalks, can be a potentially deadly problem in winter and spring.

Traffic Laws:  Driving while intoxicated is a very serious offense and carries heavy penalties.  The Estonian legal system takes a zero-tolerance approach, and even one drink can lead to a DUI arrest.

If you plan to drive in Estonia, you must have a valid U.S. driver’s license.  Licenses which do not include a symbol and description of the vehicle category the driver is licensed to operate must be accompanied by a valid International Driving Permit (IDP).  IDPs can be obtained from either the American Automobile Association (AAA) or the American Automobile Touring Alliance before departing the United States.  Details can be found on Estonia’s Road Administration website.  Car rental companies may have additional requirements.

If you have an Estonian residence permit, you must obtain an Estonian driver’s license.  Contact the Estonian Transport Administration (ARK) for information on obtaining an Estonian driver’s license.   

  • You must use your headlights at all times.
  • The use of seatbelts, both front and rear, is mandatory in Estonia, as are car seats for infants.
  • Talking on cell phones while driving is prohibited, except when using a hands-free system.
  • It is illegal to turn right on a red light.
  • Winter tires are required every year from December 1 to March 1.
  • Do not attempt to move the vehicle to the side of the road until the police reach the scene if you are in an accident.  To request roadside assistance or towing service, dial 1888.
  • Pedestrians have the right of way in Estonia and may step out into the road suddenly.

Public Transportation:  Public transportation is generally considered safe, but travelers are encouraged to select well-marked taxis.

See our Road Safety page for more information.  Visit the website of Estonia’s national tourist office and Republic of Estonia Road Administration for road safety. 

Aviation Safety Oversight:  As there is no direct commercial air service to the United States by carriers registered in Estonia, the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has not assessed the Government of Estonia’s Civil Aviation Authority for compliance with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) aviation safety standards.  Further information may be found on the FAA’s safety assessment page.

Maritime Travel:  Mariners planning travel to Estonia should also check for U.S. maritime advisories and alerts.  Information may also be posted to the U.S. Coast Guard homeport website, and the NGA broadcast warnings.

For additional travel information

International Parental Child Abduction

Review information about International Parental Child Abduction in Estonia.  For additional IPCA-related information, please see the International Child Abduction Prevention and Return Act (ICAPRA) report.

Last Updated: July 26, 2023

Travel Advisory Levels

Assistance for U.S. Citizens

U.S. Embassy Tallinn
Kentmanni 20
15099 Tallinn
Estonia
Telephone
+(372) 668-8128
Emergency
+(372) 668-8100
Fax
+(372) 668-8267

Estonia Map