Crossing the Estonian border

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People who are allowed to enter Estonia:

  • All who hold Estonian citizenship, have a residence permit or a right of residence in Estonia, or a permanent residence in Estonia according to the population register, regardless of whether they have any signs of disease or not.

  • Citizens and residents of the European Union, the European Economic Area countries, the Swiss Confederation, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland or the Principality of Andorra, the Principality of Monaco, the Republic of San Marino, and the Vatican City State (the Holy See), as well as persons holding a long-stay visa who have no symptoms of disease and their family members who have no symptoms of disease.

  • All who arrive to the Republic of Estonia from the European Union or the Schengen Area countries or from the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland if they show no symptoms of disease.

  • Foreign nationals from third countries who arrive in Estonia for work or study if they show no signs of disease.

Self-isolation is mandatory for everyone showing symptoms.

Self-isolation for individuals without any symptoms depends on the country from which they departed or countries through which they transited. People arriving to Estonia from at-risk countries have an obligation to remain in self-isolation for 10 days upon arrival. If they wish to reduce their period of self-isolation, they must get tested not earlier than 72 hours before they arrive in Estonia, and the second test can then be done in Estonia not earlier than on the sixth day after the first test. The self-isolation can be terminated early if the results of both tests are negative. It is also possible to get tested immediately after arrival in Estonia. In this case, it is also possible to reduce the self-isolation period when another test is done no earlier than 6 days after the first test and both of which must be negative. The period of 6 days will be calculated from the day following the first test.

People who have done their first test in another country (i.e. not at the border) must call to the call centre for people crossing the border 678 0000 (Monday to Friday 9pm to 5pm).

Information on the list of countries and self-isolation requirements for arrivals to Estonia is available on the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

If a person who comes to Estonia from a third country to study or to work, and they come from a country or transit through a country that is not listed on the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, or is listed with RED, they must remain in self-isolation, which means that the employer or educational institution ensures the following:

  • the transport of the employee or student and the opportunity to be in self-isolation for 10 days upon arrival in Estonia,

  • testing of the employee or student for COVID-19 immediately upon arrival in Estonia and re-testing no sooner than on day 10 of their stay in Estonia,

  • employees may not take up employment and students may not begin their studies during the first 1 days after arrival in Estonia,

  • employees may start work and students may begin their studies on day 11, provided that their second coronavirus COVID-19 test result is negative.

As an exception, the following persons who do not show any signs of illness may enter Estonia:

  • employees at a foreign diplomatic representation or a consular office in Estonia, their family members, or foreign nationals arriving to Estonia in the framework of international military cooperation,

  • persons who are directly involved with transporting goods or raw materials, including loading of goods or raw materials,

  • person who is a member of a foreign delegation arriving in Estonia at the invitation of the authority of the state or local government entity in order to attend a work-related meeting,

  • providers of healthcare or other services necessary for solving the emergency situation,

  • persons who are directly involved in the international carriage of goods or passengers, including crew members serving on an international means of transport and persons performing repairs, warranty, or maintenance services on a means of transport,

  • persons who provide services to groups of passengers and are directly involved in the provision of passenger transport services,

  • persons whose purpose of arrival in Estonia is to ensure the performance of an essential service,

  • persons whose arrival in Estonia is related to the maintenance, repair, warranty or information and communication technology of equipment of an enterprise operating in Estonia, where this is necessary to ensure the operation of the enterprise,

  • foreign nationals who are immediately passing through the territory of Estonia in order to reach their country of residence,

  • foreign nationals whose direct descendant or ascendant, relative or spouse is an Estonian national, holder of an Estonian residence permit or the right of residence.

  • foreign nationals who have received a special permit to enter the country from the Police and Border Guard Board. The application must be sent to ppa@politsei.ee. The application for permission to cross the border in exceptional circumstances can be found on the website of the Police and Border Guard Board. The purpose of the special application is to allow third-country nationals to apply for crossing the external borders, for the purpose of entering Estonia under special circumstances for family reasons, such as funeral, wedding, illness of a family member, an indispensable meeting with a family member. A foreigner allowed to enter Estonia on the basis of a special application is subject to a general restriction of freedom of movement and must not leave their permanent place of residence or stay within 10 days.

The person arriving in Estonia can complete the electronic health declaration for crossing the border 24 hours before their arrival to Estonia. By doing so, the crossing of the border will be faster, and they do not have to wait in order to fill in a paper declaration.

Last updated: 15.01.2021 17:35

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All symptomatic persons have an obligation to self-isolate. Asymptomatic persons' obligation to self-isolate depends on their country of departure or transit.

Returning to Estonia from the countries at-risk from COVID-19, people have the obligation to self-isolate for 10 days upon arrival. In order to reduce the 10-day self-isolation period need to test for coronavirus no earlier than 72 hours before arrival. The second test can then be taken in Estonia not earlier than the sixth day after the first test. The period of six days will be calculated from the day following the first test. The isolation can end before the 10-day period if the results of both tests are negative.

From 1 January, when travelling to Estonia from the United Kingdom of Great-Britain and Northern Ireland, a SARS-CoV-2 test must be carried out at least 72 hours before the start of the trip or immediately after arrival. The obligation to take the test does not extend to children under 12 years of age. After arrival, people must remain in their residence or permanent place of stay. To reduce the time of self-isolation, the second test must be performed no earlier than on the sixth day after the first test results are returned. If both tests come back negative, the obligation to self-isolate ends. After the first negative test result, it is not possible to fulfil essential work obligations. However, it is possible to attend an unavoidable family event if the first test is negative.

Information about the countries and self-isolation obligations of those arriving in Estonia can be found on the homepage of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs: https://vm.ee/en/information-countries-and-self-isolation-requirements-passengers

Staying in self-isolation means that a person cannot leave their place of residence within 10 days, except at the order of a health care worker or police officer or for essential trips. For example, you can leave your home if your life is in danger or you need medical care, you need to renew food supplies, buy essential goods, purchase medicines, get fresh air while not coming into contact with other people. In all these cases, contacts with other people must be avoided. Therefore, you cannot go to work or go hiking on a populated hiking trail. But you can go outside for a run or ride a bike, for example, if you do it without coming into contact with other people.

Last updated: 15.01.2021 17:35

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The restriction observation on freedom of movement confirmation or obligation to self-isolate is a document that a person entering Estonia signs at the border. The signature is confirmation that the person is:

  • aware of the obligation to restrict their freedom of movement
  • obligated to stay at their residence or place of stay for 10 calendar days.

The person signing the document also includes their personal and contact information, as well as the address of the residence or place of stay. If the address provided at the border changes during the obligation to not leave that address, the Police and Border Control should be notified by e-mail at: ppa@politsei.ee

The restriction of freedom of movement (self-isolation) imposed by the Order of the Government of the Republic applies regardless of whether the confirmation document was signed upon arrival in Estonia.

Last updated: 19.11.2020 17:39

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If you are an Estonian citizen or resident, you will not be turned back from the border even if you have symptoms of the disease. Also, those foreign citizens, whose family members reside in Estonia, will also be allowed to enter the county.

At the border

  • your travel documents will be checked, as well as your reason for entering the country and
  • the state of your health will be visually checked.

Last updated: 22.07.2020 16:33

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Police provides official assistance to the Health Board in monitoring compliance with restrictions on movement. This means that when police officers see the movement restrictions set be the government being violated in the course of their every-day work, they talk with people and explain the risks involved in public gatherings. If the infringement continues, the police inform the Health Board, which may, if necessary, issue a prescriptive order and impose a penalty payment.

Last updated: 06.10.2020 17:06

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The purpose of self-isolation is to prevent possible contacts with other people to prevent the spread of coronavirus. Therefore, a person who has been in close contact with an infected person or a person who has returned from at-risk country should maintain distance with family members.

During the self-isolation period:

  1. Use the opportunities for remote work and learning.

  2. Do not leave your home or place of residence, except (a) on instructions from a health care worker or police officer (b) on instructions of a health care worker to receive health care services or in the event of an emergency that threatens life or health, (c) to obtain the necessary items (d) avoiding any contacts with other people while outdoors (park, forest, etc.).

  3. Follow health safety requirements: (a) wash your hands regularly with soap and warm water and disinfect, if necessary; taking into account that the virus can spread from contaminated objects (b) avoid touching the face, eyes, mouth and nose with your hands; (c) air the rooms regularly (at least twice a day, at least 15 minutes at a time) (d) cover nose and mouth with a tissue or sleeve when coughing or sneezing (the used tissue should be thrown away immediately, and then wash your hands).

  4. If you need to go to a public place in order to purchase the necessary items, wear a mask.

  5. If you or someone in your household develops any symptoms of the disease, then a) contact your family physician or family physician hotline at 1220 as soon as possible; b) provide information whether you have been in close contact with a person infected with COVID-19, or you have returned from an at-risk country c) describe your health status to the family physician and follow the physician´s instructions.

If your health suddenly deteriorates, call the emergency number 112. NB! When making the phone call, please provide information of your contact with an infected person. If you display any symptoms, please do not go to the emergency department or to the family physician yourself, request for treatment advice and instructions via telephone.

Last updated: 24.11.2020 11:14

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Both Estonia and Russia have established restrictions for border crossing.

As of March 18, the Russian border is closed for the citizens of other countries and for stateless persons.

The following people who do not have symptoms of the disease may cross the border:

  • employees of diplomatic representation residing in Russia, and their family members,

  • cargo truck drivers on international routes,

  • crew members of planes and ships,

  • rail transportation workers on international rail transport,

  • members of official delegations,

  • people who hold a diplomatic or service visa, or a regular visa related to a death of a close relative,

  • people permanently residing in the Russian Federation.

Based on the restrictions in force as of March 30:

  • foreign citizens (including Estonian citizens and residents) can leave Russia,

  • Russian citizens who live in Estonia on the basis of a residence permit are allowed to return to Russia, but they can return to Estonia only after the restrictions imposed by Russia have been lifted;

  • Russian citizens and Russian residents whose permanent residence is in Russia are allowed to return to their place of residence;

  • no new changes have been implemented in international freight transport regarding the crossing of the Russian state border.

Additional information is available from the helplines of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs: +7(495) 587 8860, +7(499) 244 1977, +7 (499) 244 1988, +7(499) 244 2847.

Also refer to the Reisi Targalt website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and to the home page of the Estonian Embassy in Moscow.

Applying for a permit to cross the border in exceptional circumstances

The obligation to prove the need to cross the border, provided the person falls in one of the categories under exceptions, lies with the person themselves. The application may also be submitted, and the circumstances can also be proven by the company or employer.

The prior notification of the Police and Border Guard Board is the prerequisite for crossing the border for people involved in the maintenance, repair, warranty or information and communication technologies, and people involved in work-related travel. The notification can be submitted at ppa@politsei.ee and will be answered as soon as possible.

For people who do not qualify for the exceptions specified in the order, it is still possible to get a permit for crossing of border on the basis of a special application which can be sent to ppa@politsei.ee.

Additional information regarding:

Crossing the border takes longer than usual.

Last updated: 15.01.2021 17:35

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No, it is not possible to organise the receipt of the animal this way, as the officials of the Police and Border Guard Board are not allowed to bring any animals across the border. You will therefore have to find another solution or wait for the movement restrictions to be lifted.

The Police and Border Guard Board will allow you to leave Estonia, in case you decide to go to the neighbouring country to get the animal. However, entry into another country may be subject to restrictions. If necessary, contact the border guard of the neighbouring country and apply for a special permit to enter the country. You can also ask a foreign embassy or a foreign representation for further information on entry conditions and applying for a special permit.

If the seller of the animal wishes to come to Estonia, they must apply for a special permit to enter Estonia from the Police and Border Guard Board. You can find more information on the website https://www.politsei.ee/en/instructions/emergency-situation

Last updated: 14.09.2020 10:48

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If you have tested positive for corona virus you will be subject to restrictions on movement and you may not leave your place of residence from when you are diagnosed with the coronavirus until you have fully recovered. You may only leave if your home is told to do so by a healthcare worker or a police officer or for essential reasons if you are life or health are in danger. The families of people who have tested positive are subject to the same restrictions on movement.

Exceptional cases when it is permitted to leave the home if there are no signs of illness are:

  • if a member of the family is a healthcare worker or providing other services that are vital in the emergency
  • to get essential supplies in the immediate local area when there is no other way of getting them. In this case all restrictions on movement and public spaces must be followed
  • if there has been no contact at all within the home with the person who has been diagnosed with coronavirus
  • to spend time outdoors if all the earlier restrictions on movement in public spaces are followed

Last updated: 06.08.2020 12:49

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If a person wishes the Police and Border Guard Board (PBGB) to review the imposition of the restriction of movement, or wishes to change the contact details on the confirmation sheet, they must contact the PBGB. To this end, please send the following to ppa@politsei.ee:

  • your contact details (first and last name, personal identification code, telephone number, address)
  • time and place of border crossing
  • explanation (e.g. justification for an exemption)

Last updated: 06.10.2020 17:09

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Currently it is most prudent to plan direct flights to or from Estonia no more than one week in advance, as beyond that there cannot be full certainty that the infection rate in the given country will not exceed the permitted level. The Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications reviews the infection rates for countries each Friday afternoon and then opens or closes routes accordingly.

Starting from the beginning of this year, it is allowed to open up air routes from Estonia to countries where the coronavirus infection rate per 100,000 residents within the past 14 days is under double the European Union average.

The government has established exceptions for Warsaw, Copenhagen, Frankfurt, Riga, and Helsinki. Flights from Estonia can be operated to these destinations, regardless of the new cases of infection in the country over the last 14 days.

The list of permitted countries is updated every Friday afternoon, which means that the list of countries from which it is possible to take a direct flight to Estonia can change each week. More information on the list of countries can be found here: https://www.mkm.ee/et/uudised/info-lennupiirangute-kohta.

Last updated: 15.01.2021 18:03

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It is currently not possible to visit Finland for tourism.

More information when traveling to Finland https://reisitargalt.vm.ee/riigid/soome/

As of 23. 11. 2020 it is possible to enter Finland under following circumstances:

  • An Estonian citizen living in Finland and their family members. Living in Finland means that a person has a right of residence registered with the Finnish Migration Board,

  • Estonian citizen working in Finland (commuting between Estonia and Finland),

  • in connection with family matters (e.g., family member visit, funeral), study and other unavoidable reasons.

All arrivals in Finland must remain in voluntary self-isolation for 10 days. The exception applies to those who work in Finland but are not Finnish residents (so-called commuters). As of October 1, voluntary self-isolation can be replaced and time can be reduced by testing.

NB! The burden of proof at the border lies with the person crossing the border. The decision on admission is made by the Finnish Border Guard at the border. Border Guard helpline: +358 295 420 100 (Mon-Fri 8.00-16.00) and e-mail: rajavartiolaitos@raja.fi

More information on the new restrictions in Estonian on the website of the Finnish Ministry of Internal Affairs and on the website of the Finnish Border Guard Board.

Transit through Finland to Estonia: Estonian citizens and permanent residents are allowed to transit through Finland from international airports and ports - at the point of departure it is important to have the proof (ferry ticket, plane ticket) available for the airline indicating the final destination of the trip is Estonia.

Through Finnish airports it is possible to travel with scheduled flights to the desired destination in the world if the passenger has the right to enter the destination country. The passenger must remain in the airport transit area and, if there is a long waiting time between two flights, they can stay overnight near the airport. More information: Finnish Airport website.

National restrictions: The Finnish National Board of Health recommends that you wear the mask in public transport and in public places if it is not possible to maintain a safe distance or if you are waiting for the result of your COVID-19 test. It is recommended to wear a mask upon arrival in the country, when you move from a border crossing to a place of residence and when you have to go outside during self-isolation (eg to see a doctor).

As of 30 November, new restrictions were introduced in the capital area, which you can read about in Estonian here.

Additional information: Finnish Border Guard information and the Estonian Embassy in Helsinki

Please note that Finland may change the conditions of entry and stay. If you have additional questions, we recommend that you contact the Finnish Embassy in Tallinn.

When traveling from Finland to Estonia

All Estonian citizens and residents and their family members can travel to Estonia. Estonian citizens and residents are admitted to the country regardless of whether they have symptoms of the disease or not.

When travelling from Finland to Estonia, you do not have to remain in self-isolation if:

  • you have taken a coronavirus test not earlier than 72 hours before arrival in Estonia, the result of which is negative. When traveling from Estonia to Finland and returning to Estonia, the coronavirus test can also be taken in Estonia and in case of a negative result, you can return to everyday life. Self-isolation must be maintained until the test result is returned.

  • the purpose of a person's arrival in Estonia is to work, study, receive health care, family events or transit. For the above reasons, there is no obligation to take a coronavirus test before arriving in Estonia.

When traveling for other reasons and not taking the test, self-isolation must be maintained for 10 days.

Last updated: 15.01.2021 18:02

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From 1 January, when travelling to Estonia from the United Kingdom, a SARS-CoV-2 test must be taken at least 72 hours before the start of the trip. The obligation to test does not extend to children under 12 years of age.

After crossing the border, you must remain in self-isolation for 10 days. The time of self-isolation can be reduced if, in addition to the test performed before arrival in the country, the test is also performed on the sixth day after arrival in Estonia. If both tests are negative, you can return to your regular life. After the first negative test result, it is not possible to perform essential duties, but it is possible to participate in an unavoidable family event.

People who arrive to Estonia from the UK who are unable to test 72 hours before the trip due to a short notice period, can test immediately upon arrival in Estonia. To reduce the period of self-isolation, the second test must be performed no earlier than the sixth day after the first test results are known. Both tests must be negative.

The period of self-isolation is also reduced if the doctor considers the person to be safe from infection. To reduce self-isolation period, testing should also be performed in children under 12 years of age.

A person coming from the United Kingdom may be released from self-isolation on the instructions of a doctor, police, or rescue officer or in the event of an emergency. A person in isolation may also leave home when acquiring the necessities of everyday life, if these cannot be obtained in any other way. It is allowed to be outdoors while avoiding contacts with other people. Regardless of the reason for leaving home or a permanent place of residence, all measures to prevent the spread of coronavirus must be followed.

Exceptions will continue to apply to those people who are not subject to testing or self-isolation restrictions if they do not show any signs of illness. For example, restrictions on military defence co-operation do not extend to those arriving in Estonia, diplomats, emergency responders.

Last updated: 15.01.2021 17:34

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If a person arrives to Estonia for another reason than the listed reasons (studying, health-related, family reasons), then as of January 15, it is possible to be tested for coronavirus up to 72 hours before the arrival in order to be released from the obligation to self-isolate.

Last updated: 15.01.2021 17:36

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If a person is travelling for the abovementioned reasons, then it is not necessary to get tested before returning to Estonia. This applies to both Baltic countries and Finland.

Last updated: 15.01.2021 17:36

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According to the Explanatory Memorandum to the Order of the Government of the Republic:

According to the recommendations of the Scientific Advisory Board and the Health Board, the maximum infection rate limit has been amended so that a person arriving to Estonia after a minimum stay of ten days in a Member State of the European Union, or the Schengen Convention, the European Economic Area, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, or the Principality of Andorra, the Principality of Monaco, the Republic of San Marino and the Vatican City (Holy See) does not have the obligation to self-isolate or to be tested in order to reduce the self-isolation period. The Order establishes that instead of the previous rate of maximum of 50 infected persons per 100 000 inhabitants over the past 14 days, the limit of 150 infected persons per 100 000 inhabitants over the 14 days.

Therefore, if the country´s infection rate is below 150, all people wishing to travel are welcome, regardless of the purpose, and do not have to remain in isolation.

Last updated: 15.01.2021 17:36

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Yes, the obligation to remain in isolation for ten calendar days applies.

It is possible to reduce the self-isolation period by taking a test immediately upon arrival in Estonia, and the second test not earlier than on the sixth day after the first test results have been returned.

In order to reduce self-isolation period, the results of both tests must be negative, or a certificate of health must be provided by a doctor. The latter option is necessary, for example, if a person carries out the SARS-CoV-2 PCR tests to reduce their self-isolation period, and the results are positive due to the recent COVID-19 illness. In this case, the person must contact their family physician who confirms there is no danger of infection.

Last updated: 15.01.2021 17:36

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The rule that applies to arrivals from the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland: a test must be done at least 72h before arrival to the country. If a test has not been done, it must be done immediately after arriving in Estonia. Children under the age of 12 are not required to do these tests.

However, if a child under the age of 12 wishes to shorten the 10 day isolation period required after arrival to the country, she needs to do two tests. So the choice is either testing or a full isolation period.

Last updated: 15.01.2021 18:03

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From third countries the infection rate indicator limit is 16 not 150.

When it comes to transit, then if a person has come through a country where the infection rate indicator is more than 16/150, he needs to do a test. For instance, if the point of departure is a country where the indicator is 14 but then the passenger travels through an airport in a country where the indicator is 160, a test is obligatory, as is staying in self-isolation. The isolation period can be shortened by a second test that can be done no sooner than 6 days after getting the results of the first test.

Last updated: 15.01.2021 18:03

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More information about the coronavirus and restrictions related to it is available calling 1247 (from abroad +372 600 1247).