Emigrating to Estonia: Guide For Expats

Emigrating to Estonia offers a unique opportunity to experience the beauty and innovation of this Baltic gem. With its stunning landscapes, vibrant culture, and advanced digital infrastructure, Estonia has become an attractive destination for individuals seeking new beginnings. The country’s e-residency program provides easy access to online business opportunities, fostering an entrepreneurial spirit.

Why Emigrate to Estonia

Emigrating to Estonia offers a multitude of compelling reasons. Firstly, Estonia is known for its advanced digital infrastructure, making it an ideal destination for tech-savvy individuals and entrepreneurs. The country’s e-residency program allows easy access to online business opportunities. Additionally, Estonia boasts a high standard of living, excellent healthcare and education systems, and a safe and clean environment. Its stunning natural landscapes, vibrant cultural scene, and welcoming society provide a rich and fulfilling lifestyle. Whether it’s the opportunity for professional growth, a high quality of life, or a sense of adventure, Estonia has much to offer to those seeking a fresh start.

Visa and Residency Requirement

Visa and residency requirements in Estonia are relatively straightforward and favorable for many individuals. Citizens of the European Union (EU), European Economic Area (EEA), and Switzerland enjoy freedom of movement and can reside and work in Estonia without a visa or residency permit. Non-EU/EEA citizens, on the other hand, may need to apply for a visa or a long-term residence permit depending on the purpose and duration of their stay. Estonia offers various residency permits, such as the temporary residence permit, which can be obtained through employment, entrepreneurship, studies, or family reunification.

Accomodation in Estonia

Finding accommodation in Estonia is generally manageable, with options ranging from apartments to houses, both for rent and for sale. Major cities like Tallinn, Tartu, and Pärnu offer a variety of housing choices to suit different preferences and budgets. Online platforms, real estate agencies, and classified advertisements are useful resources for finding available properties. Rental agreements typically require a security deposit and may involve signing a lease contract. It is advisable to start the search in advance and consider factors like location, amenities, and transportation accessibility. Overall, with some research and planning, finding suitable accommodation in Estonia can be a smooth process.

Regular Regions for Expats

Estonia has several regions that are popular among expats for their unique charm and amenities. Tallinn, the capital city, is a vibrant hub with a bustling expat community, offering a mix of historical architecture, modern infrastructure, and diverse cultural experiences. Tartu, known for its prestigious university, attracts many international students and academics. Pärnu, a coastal town, appeals to expats seeking a relaxed lifestyle near the beach. Other regions like Haapsalu, Viljandi, and Kuressaare also offer a quieter pace of life and opportunities to immerse in Estonia’s natural beauty. Each region provides its own distinct flavor, catering to different preferences and interests of expats.

Healthcare System in Estonia

Estonia boasts a well-developed and accessible healthcare system. The country provides universal healthcare coverage to its residents, ensuring that essential medical services are available to all. The healthcare system is funded through a combination of social health insurance contributions and general taxation. Estonia prioritizes preventative care, with regular check-ups and screenings encouraged. Public healthcare facilities are widespread and offer a wide range of medical services. Private healthcare options are also available for those seeking additional choices or faster access to specialized care.

Education System in Estonia

Estonia’s education system is highly regarded for its quality and innovation. The country places a strong emphasis on education, offering a comprehensive and inclusive system from early childhood to higher education. The education system promotes a student-centered approach, focusing on creativity, critical thinking, and digital literacy. Estonian schools provide a supportive and nurturing environment, fostering individual growth and holistic development. The country has a well-developed network of public and private schools, including specialized institutions for various fields of study.

Employment Opportunities in Estonia

Estonia offers a range of employment opportunities, particularly in sectors such as information technology, digital services, engineering, finance, and logistics. The country has established itself as a hub for innovation and technology, attracting global companies and startups. Talented professionals, both local and international, have access to a thriving job market with numerous vacancies and career growth prospects. Estonia’s favorable business environment, investment in digital infrastructure, and supportive government policies contribute to a dynamic employment landscape.

Estonia Lifestyle and Culture

Estonia’s lifestyle and culture are deeply rooted in its rich history and natural surroundings. The Estonian people value simplicity, nature, and a strong sense of community. The country offers a balanced lifestyle that embraces both modernity and tradition. Estonians enjoy spending time outdoors, exploring the picturesque landscapes, forests, and lakes. The culture celebrates music, literature, and traditional folk traditions, which are reflected in numerous festivals and events throughout the year. The sauna holds a special place in Estonian culture, fostering relaxation and social bonding.

Cost of Living in Estonia

The cost of living in Estonia is generally moderate compared to other European countries. While the prices can vary depending on the location, overall, Estonia offers a good balance between affordability and quality of life. Housing costs, including rent and utilities, are reasonable, especially outside of major cities. Grocery expenses are typically affordable, and dining out can be a good value for money. Public transportation is efficient and reasonably priced. Healthcare and education are largely subsidized by the government, making them more accessible.

Moving to Estonia Checklist

When planning to move to Estonia, it’s helpful to have a checklist to ensure a smooth transition. Firstly, check visa and residency requirements based on your citizenship and purpose of stay. Research housing options and connect with real estate agents or online platforms for accommodation. Make arrangements for healthcare coverage and ensure you have necessary medical documents. If applicable, arrange for school enrollment for children. Transfer or establish a bank account in Estonia. Notify relevant authorities and service providers about your move and update your address. Familiarize yourself with local customs, language, and cultural nuances to ease integration. Lastly, organize your personal belongings and make travel arrangements to Estonia.


Emigrating to Estonia presents a wealth of opportunities and advantages. Whether it’s the advanced digital infrastructure, vibrant startup ecosystem, high quality of healthcare and education, or the country’s stunning landscapes and rich cultural heritage, Estonia offers a desirable destination for those seeking a fresh start. With a favorable visa and residency system, finding accommodation, exploring various regions, and integrating into the Estonian lifestyle and culture become feasible endeavors. The moderate cost of living, coupled with ample employment prospects, adds to the appeal. Moving to Estonia requires proper planning and organization, but the rewards of this Baltic gem are undoubtedly worth the effort.


What is the official language of Estonia?
  • The official language of Estonia is Estonian. However, many Estonians also speak English, especially in urban areas and among younger generations.
Can I work in Estonia as a non-EU citizen?
  • Yes, it is possible to work in Estonia as a non-EU citizen. You would generally need to secure a work permit or a long-term residence permit based on employment. It is recommended to consult the Estonian authorities or an immigration expert for detailed information and requirements.
Is Estonia a part of the Eurozone?
  • Yes, Estonia has been a member of the Eurozone since 2011. The official currency used in Estonia is the Euro (€).
Are healthcare services in Estonia of good quality?
  • Yes, Estonia has a well-developed healthcare system that provides quality medical services. Both public and private healthcare facilities are available, offering a range of treatments and specialized care. It is important to have valid health insurance coverage when residing in Estonia.
How safe is Estonia for living and visiting?
  • Estonia is generally considered a safe country for both residents and visitors. The crime rates are relatively low, and the country has a well-functioning legal system. As with any destination, it is always advisable to take standard precautions and be aware of your surroundings, especially in crowded tourist areas or during late hours.
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