Estonia Register Travel insurance Destinations
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Estonia - Take normal security precautions
Take normal security precautions in Estonia.
Safety and security
Safety and security
Petty crime such as pickpocketing and purse snatching occur, particularly in Tallinn Old Town and during the summer tourist season. Thieves often work in small groups. They target tourists in airports, train stations and other public areas.
Violent crime occurs rarely, but foreigners are not common targets.
Theft of vehicles or their contents is common.
Harassment of individuals sometimes occurs for reasons of race or foreign-looking appearance.
- Avoid parks, poorly lit streets and certain areas of Tallinn after dark, including Kopli and Lasnamäe
- Don’t show signs of affluence
- Don’t carry large amounts of cash
- Always lock your vehicle
- Always park your vehicle in a guarded parking lot overnight
- Ensure that your personal belongings, including your passport and other travel documents, are secure at all times.
There is a threat of terrorism in Europe. Terrorist attacks have occurred in a number of European cities. There is a potential for other violent incidents.
Targets could include:
- government buildings, including schools
- places of worship
- airports and other transportation hubs and networks
- public areas such as tourist attractions, restaurants, bars, coffee shops, shopping centres, markets, hotels and other sites frequented by foreigners
Always be aware of your surroundings when in public places.
Credit card and ATM fraud occurs.
Young women sometimes approach travellers at reputable bars with invitations to socialize at a nearby bar. Once at the new bar, some travellers fall victim to criminal activity or receive very large bills for drinks and entertainment.
Be careful when using debit or credit cards:
- pay careful attention when your cards are being handled by others
- use ATMs located in well-lit public areas or inside a bank or business
- avoid using card readers with an irregular or unusual feature
- cover the keypad with one hand when entering your PIN
- always confirm prices before ordering.
- check for any unauthorized transactions on your account statements
Demonstrations may occur. Even peaceful demonstrations can turn violent at any time. They can also lead to disruptions to traffic and public transportation.
- Avoid areas where demonstrations and large gatherings are taking place
- Follow the instructions of local authorities
- Monitor local media for information on ongoing demonstrations
Road conditions and road safety can vary greatly throughout the country. Drivers generally respect traffic laws.
Relatively good highways connect Estonia with Latvia and Russia.
Country roads are poorly lit.
Animals sometimes wander onto the road.
Driving conditions may be hazardous during winter and spring.
City buses are reliable but often crowded.
Rail service is usually good but is limited to local connections around Estonia’s main cities.
Use only officially marked taxis. Ensure that the taxi meter is in use and prices are visible.
Call for a taxi instead of hailing one on the street.
We do not make assessments on the compliance of foreign domestic airlines with international safety standards.
Every country or territory decides who can enter or exit through its borders. The Government of Canada cannot intervene on your behalf if you do not meet your destination’s entry or exit requirements.
We have obtained the information on this page from the Estonian authorities. It can, however, change at any time.
Verify this information with foreign diplomatic missions and consulates in Canada.
Estonia is a Schengen area country. Canadian citizens do not need a visa for travel to countries within the Schengen area. However, visa-free travel only applies to stays of up to 90 days in any 180-day period. Stays are cumulative and include visits to any Schengen area country.
If you plan to stay in the Schengen area for a longer period of time, you will need a visa. You must contact the high commission or embassy of the country or countries you are travelling to and obtain the appropriate visa(s) prior to travel.
Entry requirements vary depending on the type of passport you use for travel.
Before you travel, check with your transportation company about passport requirements. Its rules on passport validity may be more stringent than the country’s entry rules.
Regular Canadian passport
Your passport must be valid for at least 3 months beyond the date you expect to leave the Schengen area.
Passport for official travel
Different entry rules may apply.
Other travel documents
Different entry rules may apply when travelling with a temporary passport or an emergency travel document. Before you leave, check with the closest diplomatic mission for your destination.
Tourist visa: not required for stays of fewer than 90 days in any 180-day period*
Transit visa: not required
Business visa: not required for stays of fewer than 90 days in any 180-day period*
* The 90-day period begins upon initial entry into any country of the Schengen area. Stays are cumulative and include visits to any Schengen area country within any 180-day period.
For stays longer than 90 days, customs officials may ask you to show proof of adequate health insurance upon arrival.
Other entry requirements
Customs officials may ask you to show them a proof of sufficient funds to cover your stay.
Children and travel
Learn about travel with children.
Learn about potential entry requirements related to yellow fever (vaccines section).
- Measles in Europe - February 20, 2019
Be sure that your routine vaccines, as per your province or territory, are up-to-date regardless of your travel destination.
Some of these vaccines include: measles-mumps-rubella (MMR), diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, polio, varicella (chickenpox), influenza and others.
Vaccines to Consider
You may be at risk for these vaccine-preventable diseases while travelling in this country. Talk to your travel health professional about which ones are right for you.
Hepatitis A is a disease of the liver spread through contaminated food and water or contact with an infected person. All those travelling to regions with a risk of hepatitis A infection should get vaccinated.
Hepatitis B is a disease of the liver spread through blood or other bodily fluids. Travellers who may be exposed (e.g., through sexual contact, medical treatment, sharing needles, tattooing, acupuncture or occupational exposure) should get vaccinated.
Seasonal influenza occurs worldwide. The flu season usually runs from November to April in the northern hemisphere, between April and October in the southern hemisphere and year round in the tropics. Influenza (flu) is caused by a virus spread from person to person when they cough or sneeze or by touching objects and surfaces that have been contaminated with the virus. Get the flu shot.
Outbreaks of measles are ongoing.
Measles is a highly contagious viral disease that can cause serious complications for some people.
You are at increased risk of measles infection if you have not had the illness or if you are not up to date on your vaccinations.
- Tick-borne encephalitis is present in some areas of this country.
- It is a viral disease that affects the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord).
- It is spread to humans by the bite of infected ticks or when you consume unpasteurized milk products.
- Vaccination should be considered for those who may be exposed to ticks during outdoor activities.
- A vaccine against TBE does exist but is only available in countries where the disease is present.
- Learn more on what you can do to prevent tick-borne encephalitis (TBE)?
Yellow Fever - Country Entry Requirements
Yellow fever is a disease caused by a flavivirus from the bite of an infected mosquito.
Travellers get vaccinated either because it is required to enter a country or because it is recommended for their protection.
- There is no risk of yellow fever in this country.
Country Entry Requirement*
- Proof of vaccination is not required to enter this country.
- Vaccination is not recommended.
About Yellow Fever
Yellow Fever Vaccination Centres in Canada
* It is important to note that country entry requirements may not reflect your risk of yellow fever at your destination. It is recommended that you contact the nearest diplomatic or consular office of the destination(s) you will be visiting to verify any additional entry requirements.
Food and Water-borne Diseases
Travellers to any destination in the world can develop travellers' diarrhea from consuming contaminated water or food.
In some areas in Eastern Europe, food and water can also carry diseases like hepatitis A. Practise safe food and water precautions while travelling in Eastern Europe. When in doubt, remember…boil it, cook it, peel it, or leave it!
Insects and Illness
Travellers are advised to take precautions against bites.
There is no risk of malaria in this country.
Animals and Illness
Travellers are cautioned to avoid contact with animals, including dogs, snakes, rodents, and bats. Certain infections found in Eastern Europe, like rabies, can be shared between humans and animals.
Medical services and facilities
Health care is excellent in Tallinn and Tartu, and comparable to Canadian standards. Quality of care varies greatly throughout the country.
Doctors and hospitals expect travel insurance or payment for health services. Credit cards and money transfers are widely accepted. Cash payments are accepted, but rarely expected.
Medical evacuation can be very expensive, and you may need it in case of serious illness or injury.
Make sure you get travel insurance that includes coverage for medical evacuation and hospital stays.
Keep in Mind...
The decision to travel is the sole responsibility of the traveller. The traveller is also responsible for his or her own personal safety.
Be prepared. Do not expect medical services to be the same as in Canada. Pack a travel health kit, especially if you will be travelling away from major city centres.
Laws and culture
Laws & culture
You must abide by local laws.
Learn about what you should do and how we can help if you are arrested or detained abroad.
Convention on the Transfer of Sentenced Persons
Canada and Estonia are signatories to the Convention on the Transfer of Sentenced Persons. This enables a Canadian imprisoned in Estonia to request a transfer to a Canadian prison to complete a sentence. The transfer requires the agreement of both Canadian and Estonian authorities.
Penalties for possession, use or trafficking of illegal drugs are severe. Convicted offenders can expect jail sentences or heavy fines.
Pedestrians must wear small reflectors from dusk until dawn. You can buy reflectors at most stores. They are usually pinned to coats or bags.
This law is mostly enforced in rural areas, where lack of lighting makes it difficult for drivers to see pedestrians. Pedestrians anywhere in the country, however, could be fined for failure to wear a reflector, particularly if an accident occurs.
You must carry an international driving permit and a valid Canadian driver’s licence to drive in Estonia.
Penalties for drinking and driving are severe. The legal blood alcohol limit is zero. If a police officer suspects you of drinking and driving, they could confiscate your driver’s license on the spot. If you’re convicted, you can expect heavy fines and possible jail time.
In the event of an accident, you must contact police to file an official report.
Police sometimes set up checkpoints on major roads. Foreign motor vehicles are subject to strict regulations. When driving, you should always carry your original registration documents.
You must carry photo identification, such as a passport, as local authorities can ask you to prove your identity. Keep a photocopy of your passport in a safe place, in case it’s lost or confiscated.
Dual citizenship is not legally recognized in Estonia.
If local authorities consider you a citizen of Estonia, they may refuse to grant you access to Canadian consular services. This will prevent us from providing you with those services.
Estonian law prohibits discrimination on the basis of gender and sexual orientation.
However, LGBTQ2 travellers should consider exercising caution, especially in smaller towns, when visiting Estonia. Local advocacy groups report incidents of verbal and physical assault.
The currency in Estonia is the euro (EUR).
When crossing one of the external border control points of the European Union (EU), you must make a declaration to customs if you have at least €10,000, or the equivalent in other currencies.
This includes the sum of cash, cheques, money orders, traveller’s cheques or any other convertible assets.
This does not apply if you are travelling within the EU or in transit to a non-EU country.
Cash controls - European Commission
Natural disasters and climate
Natural disasters & climate
Estonia experiences cold winters and heavy snowfall in cities and rural areas between November and March.
Flooding may occur in spring between March and May.
These conditions can put you at risk and hamper the provision of essential services. If you decide to travel to Estonia during these periods:
- be prepared to change your travel plans on short notice, including cutting short or cancelling your trip
- stay informed of the latest regional weather forecasts
- carry emergency contact information for your airline or tour operator
- follow the advice and instructions of local authorities
Dial 112 for emergency assistance.
Tallinn - Office of the Embassy of Canada
Stockholm - Embassy of Canada
For emergency consular assistance, call the the Office of the Embassy of Canada in Estonia, in Tallinn, and follow the instructions. At any time, you may also contact the Emergency Watch and Response Centre in Ottawa.
The decision to travel is your choice and you are responsible for your personal safety abroad. We take the safety and security of Canadians abroad very seriously and provide credible and timely information in our Travel Advice to enable you to make well-informed decisions regarding your travel abroad.
The content on this page is provided for information only. While we make every effort to give you correct information, it is provided on an "as is" basis without warranty of any kind, express or implied. The Government of Canada does not assume responsibility and will not be liable for any damages in connection to the information provided.
If you need consular assistance while abroad, we will make every effort to help you. However, there may be constraints that will limit the ability of the Government of Canada to provide services.
Learn more about consular services.
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