At a Glance
|GDP Total||$30.7 billion|
|GDP Per Capita||$23,241.90|
When traveling to Estonia, your nationality and the types of activities you will conduct during your trip will determine whether you may travel lawfully as a business visitor or if you require a work permit. Please seek advice from your immigration counsel if you are uncertain about the specific types of activities that constitute business or work.
What types of activities may I engage in as a business visitor?
As a business visitor to Estonia, you may engage in the activities below. While this list is not exhaustive and other activities could qualify as business, you may:
- » Attend business meetings, conferences, trade shows, and conventions
- » Buy goods for sale outside the country
- » Install, maintain, or repair equipment
If I qualify as a business visitor, do I need a visa for Estonia?
Nationals of the European Union, United States, and many other select countries are eligible for a visa waiver and are not required to obtain a visa in order to enter and conduct business activities in Estonia.
Estonia is a member of the Schengen Area, a free-travel zone comprised of 26 European countries. If your nationality is not eligible for a visa waiver in the Schengen Area, you will be required to obtain a Schengen C Visa prior to travel. Visa-waivered nationals, as well as those who are required to obtain a visa, are authorized to travel to Estonia and throughout the Schengen Area. Please note that travelers may not spend more than 90 days within any 180-day period inside the Schengen Area.
What types of activities require a work permit?
Foreign nationals may work in Estonia with a Schengen C Visa or Visa Waiver on a short-term basis without having to obtain work or residence authorization, as long as they meet the registration and salary requirements. Foreign nationals are advised to consult with a BAL Global representative prior to travel to verify that their activities are permitted without obtaining work authorization.
If I am traveling to Estonia for work, what type of work permit do I need?
The requirements for a work permit depend on your qualifications, on the nature and duration of your work, and on whether your employer has an entity in Estonia. The most common Estonian work permits are:
- » Temporary Residence Permit (local or foreign payroll/contract work authorization)
- » EU Intra-Company Transfer Permit (ICT work permit)
- » EU Blue Card (high-skilled work permit for local hires)
Is it possible to be exempted from work permit requirements?
Nationals from the European Union, the European Economic Area and Switzerland are not required to obtain a work permit in order to work in Estonia. However, registrations or other formalities may be required prior to working or residing in Estonia.
The Trade and Cooperation Agreement (TCA), which governs post-Brexit relations between the EU and the U.K., has altered immigration regulations in the affected countries. Please be sure to contact your immigration representative for full details regarding the TCA's impact in Estonia.
Inevitably, the legal and strategic considerations impacting visa selection, as well as visa waiver and work authorization eligibility, entail the careful consideration of many factors. We recommend that you consult with your immigration counsel before taking any course of action.
Copyright © 2021 Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP. Government immigration agencies often change their policies and practices without notice; please consult an immigration professional for up-to-date information. This document does not constitute legal advice or create an attorney-client relationship. BAL maintains comprehensive immigration information and processing specifics for our clients.