If you are planning to travel to a country in the European Union in 2021, it is important to note that there is a new and mandatory process for obtaining a visa. The ETIAS visa waiver program will allow travelers to travel between all of the Schengen countries by applying for one single visa waiver.
This is true for travelers who wish to visit Estonia and need to apply for and be approved for an ETIAS waiver before they can legally enter the country.
Estonia, the EU, and the Schengen Area
Estonia’s journey to the European Union was quick and simple: there was a referendum for joining the EU on September 14, 2003, and a little over two thirds of voters voted yes. Estonia formally joined the EU on May 1, 2004. As part of the European Union, Estonia is also part of the open-border Schengen Area.
Estonia is one of the least populous of all the EU member states, with a population of only 1.3 million people. It is also one of the most technologically-advanced countries in Europe: Estonia is the birthplace of Skype, children as young as 4 are taught to code in schools, and all citizens can vote, pay taxes, and sign documents online in a matter of minutes.
Who Needs ETIAS to Travel to Estonia?
The ETIAS visa waiver (short for the European Travel Information and Authorization System) is a system that will be implemented across all of the countries in the European Union in 2021.
The ETIAS visa waiver will allow visitors to travel between the Schengen countries. It is similar to the current Schengen visa, although the process to obtain an ETIAS visa waiver is much quicker, simpler, and can be done online in a matter of minutes.
Citizens of more than 60 countries will need to apply for the ETIAS waiver. Some of the countries included are from the Middle East (such as the United Arab Emirates), North America (Canada, the United States), South America (Mexico, Peru, Chile, Brazil), and Asia (Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore).
Passport and Document Requirements for Estonia ETIAS
The ETIAS requirements for Estonia are simple and straightforward. All candidates who wish to obtain an ETIAS waiver must be from an eligible country with a passport that is valid for at least three months from the date of entry into Estonia.
Likewise, candidates will need a valid debit card or credit card in order to pay the ETIAS waiver fee, and a valid email address to receive confirmation of their ETIAS visa waiver for Estonia.
How Can I Apply for Estonian ETIAS?
All applicants who wish to travel to Estonia will need to obtain a ETIAS visa waiver for Estonia. When filling out the application, candidates will be asked questions regarding their personal information, travel plans, and criminal activity (if applicable).
The questions to obtain an Estonian ETIAS include the applicant’s full name, date of birth, place of birth, their contact details and address, their passport details, and their travel plans and itinerary.
It takes less than 20 minutes to apply for an ETIAS waiver and once received, an ETIAS authorization is valid for 3 years, or until passport expiration date (whichever comes first).
Travel Information about Estonia
Estonia is one of the biggest hidden gems of Europe. As part of the three Baltic countries (which are comprised of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania), it sits near the Baltic Sea and has more than 2,222 islands.
Estonia’s capital and biggest city is Tallinn, a charming and picturesque city that’s perfect for a weekend break or a week-long trip. Half of the country is comprised of forests, which make it an excellent destination for travelers who love nature or hiking through the woods.
Travelers who are keen to visit Estonia can also add two other countries, Latvia and Lithuania, for an adventurous trip through the Baltics. Taking a cruise ship to Estonia is also popular.
If you plan to explore Estonia, there are two other cities to note. Tartu is a university town with a charming central square and one of the best museums in Estonia (called the Estonian National Museum). Narva is Estonia’s easternmost town and boasts an amazing preserved castle called the Hermann Fortress, as well as a spa town called Narva-Jõesuu.