WHO DO NOT NEED A VISA TO VISIT ESTONIA?
Nationals of the European Union (EU), the European Economic Area (EEA) and nationals of any third-country holding a residence permit of a Schengen State do not need a visa to enter Estonia. Further information regarding visa exemptions and travel documents is available on the homepage of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Estonia:
Visa exemptions: http://www.vm.ee/?q=en/node/4039
Requirements of travel documents: http://www.vm.ee/?q=en/node/6466
- Where can I apply for a visa?
- Visa types. What is a Schengen uniform visa?
- Applying for a visa
- The processing charge
- Entry to Estonia
- EU citizens family member
- Refusal, annulment and revocation of a visa
CAN I APPLY FOR A VISA IN THE FOREIGN MINISTRY?
No, it is not possible to apply for a visa in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Estonia.
In order to apply for a visa, please submit the visa application in your country of residence to Estonian representations handling visa applications or to other Schengen State representing Estonia in short stay Schengen visa matters.
IS IT POSSIBLE TO APPLY FOR A VISA AT THE BORDER?
Generally, it is not possible to apply for a visa at the border.
On exceptional cases a visa may be applied for and issued at a border checkpoint. The decision regarding exceptional visa issuance at the border is made by the Head of the Border Guard Administration.
WHERE SHOULD I TURN IN ORDER TO APLLY FOR A VISA TO ESTONIA, IF THERE IS NO ESTONIAN REPRESENTATION IN MY COUNTRY OF RESIDENCE?
If you reside in the country, where Estonia has no representation that process visa applications, please turn to the other Schengen State representing Estonia in short stay Schengen visa matters or contact the closest Estonian representation handling visa applications.
For further information please turn directly to the representation where you intend to apply for a visa.
IS IT POSSIBLE TO APPLY FOR A VISA TO ESTONIA AT ANY REPRESENTATION OF SCHENGEN STATE?
If you would like to visit Estonia, a visa application should be submitted in your country of residence to Estonian representation handling visa applications or to other Schengen State representing Estonia in short stay Schengen visa matters.
If your travel destination includes more than one Schengen State (incl. Estonia), the visa application should be submitted at the consulate of the main destionation. The main destination is understood to be the destination where the applicant intends to spend the longest time or where the main purpose of the intended journey is carried out.
If no main destination can be determined, the consulate of the Schengen State whose external border the applicant intends to cross first should deal with the application.
WHAT TYPE OF VISA SHOULD I APPLY FOR? A STUDY VISA? A BUSINESS VISA?
There are only three types of visas – a short term uniform visa (type C), an airport transit visa (type A) and a long-stay national visa (type D). It is not possible to apply for a purpose bounded visa like business visa, study visa or tourist visa.
If the purpose of entry to Estonia is studying, it is advisable to apply for a residence permit for studying. The application for residence permit has to be submitted personally to the Estonian representation aboard.
WHERE CAN I TRAVEL WITH A UNIFORM SCHENGEN VISA?
A uniform Schengen allows access to Schengen States - Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lichtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and to EU Member States that are in the process of joining the Schengen area - Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus and Romania (for specific entry requirements please consult with the nearest representation of Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus and Romania).
WHEN CAN I LODGE A VISA APPLICATION?
A visa application should in principle be lodged at least 15 calendar days before the intended visit and cannot be lodged earlier than three months before the start of the intended visit.
However it is recommended that while you lodge a visa application national holidays of the country of residence and in Estonia should be considered. Please note that during holidays the operation of certain consular services may be reduced.
HOW LONG BEFORE THE START OF THE INTENDED VISIT SHOULD I APPLY?
It is advisable to lodge an application at least 15 calendar days before the intended visit.
However it is also recommended that you lodge your visa application taking into account national holidays of the country of residence and in Estonia. Please note that during holidays the operation of certain consular services may be reduced.
DO I NEED A VISA INVITATION?
Estonia has waived a visa invitation requirement. The waiving of the visa invitation means that those applying for visas at Estonian representations abroad no longer need to present an invitation approved by Estonian Authorities (former name: Citizenship and Migration Board of Estonia).
Other supporting documents will be sufficient to prove the purpose of travel. All other requirements for visa application will remain as before. The consul reserves the right to ask the visa applicant or relevant individual to present oral or written explanations of the need for a visa.
DO I NEED TO BOOK AN APPOINTMENT BEFORE SUBMITTING A VISA APPLICATION?
Applicants may be required to obtain an appointment for the lodging of an application. Please turn to the closest Estonian representation which is handling visa applications or representation of other Schengen State in your country of residence that process short stay Schengen visas on behalf of Estonia.
I AM APPLYING FOR A SCHENGEN VISA FOR THE FIRST TIME AND I WOULD LIKE TO VISIT MY FRIEND IN ESTONIA. WHATKIND OF DOCUMENTS SHOULD I PRESENT?
The most important thing is to present your travel plans honestly and clearly and fill in the visa application form correctly with your actual contact information and primary address of residence in Estonia. It is required to present documents that prove the existence of sufficient means to cover return travel and accommodation while in Estonia. It is also useful for the applicant to indicate his or her connection to Estonia.
WHAT KIND OF DOCUMENTS I HAVE TO SUBMIT WHILE APPLYING FOR A VISA?
- a valid travel document which is issued within previous 10 years, contains at least two blank pages for visas and is valid at least 3 months after the expiration date of the visa;
- a filled in and signed application form. In case several persons (minors or a spouse) are covered by the same travel document, individual application forms must be filled in and signed by the persons concerned, in case of minors signed by the parental authority or the legal guardian. A minor at least 15 years old may lodge and sign a visa application personally;
photo (size 35x45 mm, requirements to a photo);
- Insurance policy valid in Schengen countries with a coverage of at least 30.000 EUR for the entire duration of stay in Schengen area;
• documents indicating the purpose of journey;
• documents in relation to accommodation or proof of sufficient means to cover your accommodation;
• documents indicating that you possess sufficient means of subsistence both for the duration of the intended stay and for the return to your country of origin or residence (64 EUR for each day in Estonia);
• information which enables to assess your intention to leave Schengen area before the expiry of the visa.
- visa fee
WHAT ARE SUPPORTING DOCUMENTS THAT PROVE THE PURPOSE OF TRAVEL, THE EXISTENCE OF ACCOMMODATION, AND SUFFICIENT MEANS TO COVER THE DURATION OF THE STAY IN ESTONIA AS WELL AS DEPARTURE?
This list of supporting documents is non-exhaustive and provides examples of possible supporting documents.
Supporting documents that prove the purpose of travel, means of transportation and return, means of subsistence and existence of accommodation Tourism or personal travel:
- written confirmation from the company organizing the meeting, conference, etc.
- documents that prove the existence of business ties
- invitations/tickets to a fair or seminar
- documents that certify the applicant’s connection to or status in a company
Tourism or personal travel:
- documents confirming accommodation (hotel reservation, a letter or email that confirms that the host will provide accommodation for the visa applicant)
- travel package
- copies of travel tickets
Documents that certify the applicant’s intention to leave the Schengen are upon the expiration of the visa:
- return tickets
- documents that confirm sufficient means of subsistence
- proof of employment
- proof of real estate in the country of residence
- proof of ties with the country of residence (family ties, professional status)
Documents that prove relationship to host
- Documents stating marital or family status (marriage certificate, birth certificate)
- Letter/e-mail written by the host
For more detailed information please turn to the closest Estonian representation which is handling visa applications or representation of other Schengen State in your country of residence process short stay Schengen visas on behalf of Estonia.
LOCAL SCHENGEN COOPERATION AND HARMONIZED LIST OF SUPPORTING DOCUMENTS
According to the EU Visa Code visa applicants are required to present documents indicating among other things the purpose of their journey. In order to ensure a harmonised application of the common visa policy, the EU Visa Code requires the need to complete and harmonise the lists of supporting documents to be assessed within local Schengen cooperation in each jurisdiction in order to take account of local circumstances.
Following local Schengen cooperation in countries where Estonia is processing visa applications has drawn up a harmonised list of supporting documents: Egypt, Turkey, Kazakhstan, China, USA, United Kingdom.
DO I HAVE TO GO THROUGH AN INTERVIEW AT THE CONSULATE?
Please note that during the examination of an application the consulate may call the applicant for an interview.
HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE FOR THE CONSULATE TO DECIDE ON MY APPLICATION?
Applications shall be decided on within 15 calendar days of the date of the lodging of an application which is admissible or according to the Visa Facilitation Agreements.
That period may be extended up to a maximum of 30 calendar days in individual cases, notably when further scrutiny of the application is needed.
Exceptionally, when additional documentation is needed in specific cases, the period may be extended up to a maximum of 60 calendar days.
HOW MUCH DOES A SCHENGEN VISA COST?
Schengen visa costs 60 EUR. Children from the age of six years and below the age of 12 years shall pay a visa fee of 35 EUR. Please note that EU has concluded several visa facilitation agreements which provide that the visa fee to the nationals of these countries is 35 EUR. There are visa facilitation agreements with Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Georgia, Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Russia, Serbia and Ukraine.
APPLICANTS EXEMPTED FROM VISA FEE
The following persons are exempted from paying the visa fee
- Children under 6 years.
- A family member of an Estonian or an EU/ EEA citizen of a third country whose nationals are required to hold a visa for the Schengen area; persons who intend to attend meetings of the United Nations or its organizations, the Council of Europe, the European Union or the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe to be held in Estonia.
- School children, students, post-graduate students and accompanying teachers who undertake trips for the purpose only of study or educational training.
- Researchers coming from third countries travelling in the Community for conducting scientific research with a view to facilitating proceedings carried out by Member States for issuing uniform short-stay visas.
- Persons invited by Parliament or the Estonian Government.
- Anyone who, by virtue of an international convention, is entitled to a visa free of charge.
- Representatives of non-profit organizations aged 25 years or less participating in seminars, conferences, sports, cultural or educational events organized by non-profit organizations.
- Holders of diplomatic and service passports
- According to Visa Facilitation Agreements
DO I HAVE TO PRESENT ANY OTHER DOCUMENT AT THE SCHENGEN EXTERNAL BORDER BESIDES THE SCHENGEN VISA IN MY TRAVEL DOCUMENT?
Possession of a Schengen visa does not grant an automatic right to enter the Schengen area.
At the external border, the visa holder may be requested to produce a travel insurance, documents justifying the purpose and conditions of the intended stay and that they have sufficient means of subsistence, both for the period of the intended stay and for the return to their country of origin or transit to a third state into which they are certain to be admitted, or are in a position to acquire such means lawfully.
DOES A THIRD-COUNTRY NATIONAL HOLDING A RESIDENCE PERMIT TO ESTONIA NEED TO APPLY FOR A VISA IN ORDER TO TRAVEL IN SCHENGEN STATES?
Estonian residence permit entitles an individual with the right to travel in all Schengen States.
WHAT RULES APPLY IF MY FAMILY MEMBERS ARE EU CITIZENS?
EU citizens family members, irrespective of their nationality, have the right to accompany or join EU citizens in a Member State other than that of EU citizens nationality.
Important is that they should arrive in Estonia either accompanying the said person or to the said person.
The following persons are EU citizens family members, as defined by the Directive:
- direct descendants (i.e. children, grand-children) who are under the age of 21 or are dependants and those of your spouse or registered partner;
- dependent direct relatives in the ascending line (i.e. parents, grand-parents) and those of your spouse or registered partner.
The above family members enjoy the rights granted by the Directive when they join or accompany an EU citizen. EU citizens family member apply for entry visa to Schengen under simplified conditions and they do not have to pay any charge for a visa application.
If you think you qualify for visa facilitation you will need to show proof that you meet these criteria when you submit your visa application.
In case the conditions for granting a visa are not fulfilled, the visa is refused. The refusal to issue an entry visa is notified to the applicant in writing.
A visa may be refused on certain grounds mentioned in the EU Visa Code, such as:
- the applicant does not have an approved, valid travel document;
- the applicant is unable to provide proof of the reason and preconditions of the stay;
- the applicant does not provide proof of sufficient means of subsistence;
- the applicant is not entitled to return to the country of origin or to continue to a third country;
- there are reasonable doubts as to the applicant’s intention to leave the territory of the Member State before the expiry of the visa applied for.
The applicant may have an entry ban to Estonia or to some other Schengen country or be considered to be a threat to public policy, internal security of international relations of a Member State. An issued visa is annulled if it becomes evident that the conditions for issuing it were not met at the time when it was issued. A visa is revoked, if it becomes evident that the conditions for issuing it are no longer met.
As of 05.04.2011 a foreign citizen has the right to appeal the decision on refusal, annulment or revocation of a visa.
The refused visa applicant or a visa holder whose visa has been annulled or revoked can turn to the relevant representation by submitting a written application within 30 days.
The fee charged for processing the appeal is 20 EUR.
Bank accounts of the MINISTRY OF FINANCE for collecting the appeal fee are the followin:
- SEB Bank 10220034796011
- Swedbank 221023778606.
Reference number of the MINISTRY OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS:
Review of the appeal – 2900073630
Please note, the fee will be taken for the review of an appeal.