Life in Estonia

About Estonia

Republic of Estonia

Capital: Tallinn
Area: 45.339 km2
Official language: Estonian

(English, Russian and German are also widely spoken)
Government: Parliamentary republic
Population: 1,311,759 (01.01.2016)
Time zone: GMT +2 in winter, GMT +3 in summer

Currency: Euro (€)

Membership: European Union, NATO, OECD, WTO, Schengen Area
Distances from Tallinn: Helsinki 85 km, Riga 307 km, St. Petersburg 395 km, Stockholm 405 km, Vilnius 605 km
Climate: Annual Weather Averages. July is the hottest month in Tallinn with an average temperature of 18°C (64°F) and the coldest is February at -5°C (23°F). The wettest month is November with an average of 55mm of rain.

Why Estonia?

  • Northern Europe's hub for knowledge and digital business
  • The first country in the world to offer e-residency
  • Most entrepreneurial and startup-friendly country in Europe
  • Fresh Air. Clean Water. Pure Food

About Tallinn

Already in Medieval times, Tallinn was a famous and rich Hanseatic town for trade between East and West. Today, Tallinn is Estonia’s important financial and business center. Half of Estonia’s companies are located in and around the capital, and over half of Estonia’s GDP is generated in Tallinn. Tallinn is also known as a technology-based entrepreneurial environment and provides a place for development centers of international companies and startups to operate.

Good to know

  • Estonia was the first country in the world to use online political voting (NBC News);
  • The Estonian state currently offers 600 e-services to its citizens and 2,400 to businesses (The Economist);
  • Estonia has the world’s first e-residency. It enables foreigners to take advantage of the same e-services (incl. registering companies, and providing digital signatures). So electronically registering a company/start-up takes only a few minutes (Estonian e-Residency);
  • Estonia is considered to be the country with the highest percentage of start-ups per capita (Start up Estonia);
  • As of April 2016, 99,9% of bank transfers were made electronically, 98% of the income declarations for 2015 were submitted through the e-Tax Board, 97% of all prescriptions are written in digital form (Tallinn – facts and figures);
  • Tallinn has over 30 WiFi hotspots for its citizens and visitors, most of which are in the city centre and the Old Town, many are near popular tourist attractions. The network, TallinnWifi, may be connected to for free and it has a download speed of 15Mbps per hotspot (Free for Tourists);
  • Tallinn is home for many companies and organisations. For example European IT agency, the NATO cooperative cyber defence centre of excellence, Transferwise, Skype etc,
  • According to Richard Branson “Tallinn regularly tops the list as one of the most intelligent cities according to the Intelligent Community Forum. After all, it is the city that gave us Skype. But it isn’t just start-up and kooky entrepreneurs that the city uses tech for. It’s everywhere.” (Incorporate in Estonia)

Living costs & arrival


How to arrive in Tallinn?

There are many different travel options – but most international students probably see their first glimpse of Estonia from a plane or ship. Tallinn is accessible from everywhere in the world by plane and, currently, nearly 30 cities have direct connections with Tallinn.


More information about arriving options:


Monthly living costs: €300–€500, depending on the student`s choices


Student accommodation prices in Estonia start from €100 per month in student dormitories. Some universities have student dormitories with single, double and triple rooms. Housing costs largely depend on the location and size of the flat. On average, the prices range from about €100 for a place in a double room in the residence hall to €180–€450 or more for a private flat.

More information about find accommodation: 


Students can usually enjoy a comfortable life with around €200–250 per month for food. Each student can determine food expenses individually, depending on their needs. Every university also has its own cafeteria(s), which offers a nice meal at a reasonable price.

Daily specials in pubs and cafes: €2.50–€4


  • Public transport is available for all students and is free of charge in Tallinn (only for residents of Tallinn, including international students studying in Tallinn). Local public transport in Tartu: €8.63 with a monthly ticket (with student card), a single ticket for a student €0.51 (€1 on the bus). Most universities have everything needed (supermarkets, cafes, shops, pharmacy, gym etc.) located within a short walking distance.
  • Taxi (depending on the company): average starting fee from €1.9, each km from €0.6.
  • Bus ticket from Tallinn to Tartu: €8.10–€10.50

Entertainment and free time

  • Theatre ticket: €12–€18
  • Concert ticket: € 8–€30
  • Nightclub ticket: up to €5–€15 (depends on the club, free entrance or discounts for ladies or students with a student card are common)
  • Movie ticket: €4.5–€5.7 (depending on the cinema or time of the day or day of the week)


  • University sports clubs
  • Group training fees: average €60–€100 per semester or €30–€40 per month (depending on the university)
  • Gym/fitness club: €30–€35 per month.
  • Private sports clubs: €30–€70 per month (depending on the club and training package)

Please find more information from Study in Estonia homepage