Get travel and medical insurance
- Normal precautions
- High degree of caution
- Avoid non-essential travel
- Do not travel
- Safety and Security
- Local Laws and Customs
- Additional Information
- Embassy Contact
General COVID-19 Travel Advisory in Operation
General advice to avoid non-essential travel and ‘Normal Precautions’ list of exemptions:
In accordance with Government policy, which is based on official public health advice, the Department of Foreign Affairs continues to advise against non-essential travel overseas. This includes Great Britain but does not apply to Northern Ireland. It also includes all travel by cruise ship.
Travel to a very limited set of locations is exempted from this advice. Individuals arriving into Ireland from these locations will not be required to restrict their movements upon entry. These locations currently have a ‘normal precautions’ (“green”) security status rating. As of 4 August 2020, these locations are:
Inclusion on the list is based on the current epidemiological situation and related public health information in each location. The list and related travel advice will be reviewed on a fortnightly basis, based on advice from officials, including public health experts. Any updates or changes will be based on Government decisions. The latest updates will always be uploaded first to this General COVID-19 Travel Advisory. Country-specific tabs will be updated subsequently, and as quickly as possible, but this advisory is the primary source of information for the latest version of the list. The above list was updated on 4 August following the latest review.
If you are considering travelling outside of Ireland:
Irish citizens travelling to locations with a ‘normal precautions’ (“green”) rating are advised to follow the public health guidelines of the local health authorities and to continue to practice physical distancing measures, hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette etc. The security rating for all other locations remains unchanged at either to ‘avoid non-essential travel’ (“orange”) or to ‘do not travel’ (“red”).
The purpose of the Department’s Travel Advice is to provide information to the general public so that individuals can make informed decisions for themselves. The COVID19 pandemic continues to accelerate internationally, and there are significant risks associated with international travel. Citizens should be aware of the possible limitations to any consular assistance that could be provided. Any citizens who are considering travel abroad are advised to monitor closely our travel advice and we recommend that citizens download our TravelWise App and follow us on Twitter. Citizens travelling abroad should also register with their local Irish Embassy or Consulate and regularly check their website and Twitter accounts for details of any local public health measures and travel restrictions.
Should you need to travel for essential reasons, you should inform yourself about any requirements in place in the destination to which you are travelling. Flight restrictions and route cancellations are happening on a daily basis worldwide and there is no guarantee that air routes will continue to operate as scheduled. Testing and restrictions may be imposed or may already be in place in other countries. It is important to check with your insurance provider on coverage at this time.
What to do on entering Ireland from abroad:
The Irish Authorities advise anyone coming into Ireland, apart from Northern Ireland and individuals arriving in Ireland from locations with a security rating of ‘normal precautions’ (“green”), to restrict their movements for 14 days, and this includes citizens and residents returning to Ireland. Restricting your movements means staying indoors in one location and avoiding contact with other people and social situations as much as possible. To ensure that this is being observed all passengers arriving to Ireland from overseas are obliged to complete a mandatory Public Health Passenger Locator Form and to submit it to the relevant authority at their port of entry. For further details please see the Irish Government Advice Page. Exemptions are also in place for providers of essential supply chain services such as hauliers, pilots and maritime staff. Check the Irish Government Advice Page for full information on these requirements and further advice on returning from abroad.
Where to go for more information:
We continue to make updates to our online travel advice for over 200 countries and recommend that you download our TravelWise App and follow us on Twitter. If abroad you should register with your local Irish Embassy or Consulate and regularly check their website and Twitter accounts for details of any local public health measures and travel restrictions.
Take normal precautions.
Security Status Last Updated: 22 July 2020
Latest Travel Alert
The Government of Ireland continues to advise against non-essential travel overseas.
Passengers arriving to Ireland from overseas are obliged to complete a mandatory Public Health Passenger Locator Form and to submit it to the relevant authority at their port of entry.
From June 1, the Estonian government reopened the borders to passengers (with no symptoms) arriving from the EU/EEA, Schengen and the UK. However, anyone arriving from countries that have a coronavirus infection rate above 16 per 100,000 inhabitants will be subject to compulsory quarantine for 14 days. Information on countries and quarantine requirements is updated every Friday and can be found here.
If you are currently in Estonia, you should monitor developments regularly and follow the advice of local authorities. The Estonian Health Board contains information and advice on Coronavirus and is updated regularly. It also contains a link to information on the Family Physician Advisory Line (Ph: 1220 / +372 634 6630).
Information for travellers is available on the following websites:
Be alert to common signs of infection: respiratory problems, fever, cough, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties. Seek medical advice if you experience these symptoms.
HSE medical advice to protect yourself from getting COVID-19 is below.
• wash your hands properly and regularly with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub
• cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve when you cough and sneeze
• put used tissues into a bin and wash your hands
• touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean
Additional information on COVID-19 can be found via the following links:
The best help is often close at hand so if you have problems, try talking to your local contacts, tour operator representative or hotel management.
You can contact the emergency services in Estonia by dialling 112.
Our tips for Safe Travels:
- Purchase comprehensive travel insurance which covers all your intended activities.
- Get a European Health Insurance Card
- Add an alert for your destination within the Travelwise App.
- Register your details with us so that we can contact you quickly if there’s an unforeseen crisis like a natural disaster or a family emergency.
- Follow us on twitter @dfatravelwise for the latest travel updates.
- Read our ‘Know Before You Go’ guide.
Safety and Security
Safety and Security
Safety and security
Although the threat from terrorism in Estonia is low, there is still a global risk of indiscriminate terrorist attacks, which could be against civilian targets, including places frequented by tourists and expatriates.
Crime remains relatively low in Estonia but you should take sensible precautions:
- Don’t carry your credit card, travel tickets and money together - leave spare cash and valuables in a safe place.
- Don’t carry your passport unless absolutely necessary and leave a copy of your passport (and travel and insurance documents) with family or friends at home.
- Pickpocketing and mugging can be a problem in the Tallinn Old Town, ferry ports and major hotels - particularly during the summer months so be careful - take sensible precautions and avoid unlit side-streets and parks at night.
If you’re a victim of a crime while in Estonia, report it to the local police immediately. To call the police, dial 112. You can contact us at the Irish Embassy in Tallinn if you need help.
If you’re planning to drive in Estonia, you should take extra care, particularly when driving after dark and on major highways as road traffic accidents are common. If you want to drive:
- Bring your international driving license and make sure you have adequate and appropriate insurance.
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs is against the law (the legal alcohol limit is zero) and you risk being detained, fined or banned from driving if caught.
- Dimmed headlights and seatbelts are mandatory at all times.
- Your vehicle must have winter tyres from 1 December to 1 March every year. These dates may change if there are severe weather conditions so check local conditions if you’re driving between October and April.
- If you intend to travel by car or motorbike to Estonia, you must bring your original Vehicle Registration Certificate, as your vehicle will be refused entry into Estonia if you can’t produce it. You’re also obliged to carry a copy of your insurance certificate within the vehicle.
Pedestrians and cyclists
Reflectors are mandatory for pedestrians and cyclists at all times.
If you’re hiring a vehicle, we advise you not to hand over your passport as a form of security. If you’re allowing your passport to be photocopied, keep it in your sight at all times.
Check that you have adequate insurance and read the small print of the vehicle hire contract (particularly any waiver that will come into effect if the vehicle is damaged).
Local Laws and Customs
Local Laws and Customs
Local laws and customs
Remember, the local laws apply to you as a visitor and it is your responsibility to follow them. Be sensitive to local customs, traditions and practices as your behaviour may be seen as improper, hostile or even illegal.
Illegal drug use (no matter what the drug) carries stiff penalties, including fines and long prison terms.
Mosquitoes and horseflies
Mosquitoes and horseflies are common in Estonia during the summer months, as are ticks and mites which can spread infection. Insect repellent is a sensible precaution if you plan on visiting during the summer, particularly if you intend going to Estonia’s many forests and bogs.
We can’t pay for emergency medical repatriation, repatriation of remains, or for expenses as a result of a personal emergency while you are abroad. If you buy an appropriate travel insurance policy, these costs will be covered, provided you haven’t broken the terms and conditions.
Buying comprehensive travel insurance can save you and your family a lot of money if something goes wrong. It will also ensure that you get the medical attention you need, when you need it. Hospital bills can quickly run into thousands of euro, and a medical evacuation back to Ireland can cost thousands more.
Not all policies are the same, and the cheapest one might be cheap for a reason. Make sure your policy covers all the activities you plan to do on your trip. Insurance Ireland recommend that you purchase a policy that provides a minimum medical cover of €1 million.
Your policy should cover:
- All medical care abroad, including evacuation by air ambulance, or other emergency procedures, and any other costs associated with an unexpected longer stay.
- Your entire trip, from departure to return. Consider an annual multi-trip policy if you’re making more than one trip in the year.
- 24-hour emergency service and assistance.
- Personal liability cover (in case you’re sued for causing injury or damaging property).
- Lost and stolen possessions.
- Cancellation and curtailment.
- Any extra activities you intend to do that are excluded from standard policies (e.g. water sport activities such as jet skiing or other extreme sports).
Exclusions: You should know most insurance policies will not cover drink or drug-related incidents.
European Health Insurance Card
As an Irish resident you are entitled to get healthcare through the public system in countries of the European Union (EU), European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland if you become ill or injured while on a temporary stay there. Ensure that you get or renew your EHIC (the new name for the E111) before you go, and remember, you need one for every person travelling in your group.
You can apply for your EHIC and find out more information here.
The EHIC is not a substitute for proper travel insurance provided by a reputable insurer. It doesn’t cover medical repatriation, ongoing medical treatment or treatment of a non-urgent nature. Also, some private hospitals may not accept the EHIC, so you should check with the hospital administrator beforehand.
Entry requirements (visa/passport)
Irish citizens don’t need a visa to enter Estonia.
The currency of Estonia is the Euro.
Estonia is very cold in winter and generally under snow until March. If you’re planning to visit, you should bring warm winter clothing as well as appropriate footwear.
In the winter months, footpaths in cities and towns, including the Old Town in Tallinn, are extremely dangerous because of impacted ice.
Outside office hours, in case of a genuine consular emergency for Irish citizens, the Duty Officer is available at: + 372-56-908340.
Embassy of Ireland
Rävala pst 5
Tuesday to Thursday, 11.00 - 13.00, by appointment only. Please contact + 372-6-811-870
Get travel and medical insurance
Before travelling, the Department strongly recommends that you obtain comprehensive travel insurance which will cover all overseas medical costs, including medical repatriation/evacuation, repatriation of remains and legal costs. You should check any exclusions and, in particular, that your policy covers you for the activities you want to undertake.