The Department of Foreign Affairs strongly recommends that you obtain comprehensive travel insurance which will cover all overseas medical costs, including medical evacuation, before travelling to Estonia. You should check any exclusions, and that your policy covers you for the activities you want to undertake.
Irish Citizens should note that the Irish Government does not provide funds for emergency medical repatriation or for repatriation of remains.
You should also obtain a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) free of charge which entitles you to emergency medical treatment. This card is NOT a substitute for travel insurance. See www.ehic.ie for further details. The EHIC replaces the Form E111, which is no longer valid.
While most visits to Estonia are trouble-free, normal precautions should be taken. English is widely understood. In winter, warm clothing and sensible footwear are required given the cold weather conditions. The currency of Estonia is the Euro.
Safety and Security
Visitors should be aware of the global risk of indiscriminate terrorist attacks, which could be against civilian targets, including places frequented by foreigners.
Visitors should exercise caution, particularly around any demonstrations.
Theft is of concern in the Tallinn Old Town, particularly during the summer months. Visitors should be aware of the risks of pick-pocketing and muggings around the Old Town, ferry ports and major hotels. Remain vigilant at all times, take sensible precautions and avoid unlit side-streets and parks at night.
Local Laws and Customs
You should not become involved with drugs. Possession of even very small quantities of drugs can lead to imprisonment.
Road traffic accidents are common. Extra care must be taken at all times when driving, particularly after dark and on major highways.
By law, headlights of vehicles must be on at all times, including daylight hours. Winter tyres are a legal requirement from 1 December to 1 March every year, but if there are severe weather conditions outside these dates (likely in most years) the dates will change accordingly. You should therefore check local conditions if driving in Estonia between October and April.
Do not drink and drive. The legal limit is ZERO. Those found over the limit face a fine and possible imprisonment.
Reflectors are mandatory for pedestrians and cyclists at all times.
Natural Disasters and Climate
Estonia is very cold in winter and generally under snow until March. Visitors should therefore bring warm winter clothing as well as appropriate footwear. In the winter months, footpaths in cities and towns, including the Old Town in Tallinn, are extremely dangerous because of impacted ice.
Mosquitoes and horseflys are common in Estonia during the summer months, as are ticks and mites which can spread infection. Insect repellent is a sensible precaution if you intend travelling in Estonia during the summer months, particularly if you intend visiting Estonia’s many forests and bogs.
Additional Country Info
For entry requirements for Estonia, please contact the nearest Embassy or Consulate of Estonia.
English is widely understood in Estonia.
Estonia joined the Eurozone on 1 January 2011 and its currency is now the Euro.
Credit cards can be used in virtually all retail outlets in Tallinn.
It should be noted that if you intend to travel by car, motorbike or other MPV to Estonia, you MUST bring with you the ORIGINAL of your Vehicle Registration Certificate. The vehicle will be refused entry into Estonia if you are not in possession of this document.
You are also obliged to carry a copy of the insurance certificate for the car within the vehicle.
It is advisable to take a number of photocopies of your passport with you. During your stay you should carry a photocopy of your passport at all times.