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Estonia Student Visa – Eligibility, Requirements and Application

You need an Estonia student visa if you are to study in Estonia for one year. Find out your eligibility, requirements and application process here.

Do you know that with an Estonia student visa, you can live, study and work in Estonia? Are you a national of any Non-EU/EEA country or Switzerland who wishes to study in Estonia? Have you considered how to obtain this visa but still need clarity?

Suppose you are a student not from Estonia or any European Union / European Economic Area countries (including Switzerland). In that case, you need a temporary residence permit to study in a chosen program in Estonia.

But that would be after your university forwarded the relevant acceptance documents. You need an Estonia student visa if you are to study in Estonia for one year. You will need a temporary residence permit if your program is longer than one year.

This article will offer a comprehensive guide on how to go about your Estonia student visa, how to obtain it, and what you need to bring. First, find out what kind of student visa you need.

What are the Types of Visas to study in Estonia?

If you are not from the EU/EEA or Switzerland, you need to apply for a student visa to study in Estonia at the Estonian embassy or consulate in your country. Check the Ministry of Foreign Affairs list. However, the type of visa you need depends on how long you are to study in the country. Here are the kinds of Estonia student visas you can choose from:

  • Short-term study visa: This will let you live in Estonia for up to 90 days within 180 days. It is suitable for training, courses or conferences.
  • Long-term student visa: This visa lets you study in Estonia for up to one year.
  • Temporary residence permit: If you live and study in Estonia for up to five years, you will need a temporary residence permit. 

In addition, if you are an EU/EEA or Swiss national, you do not need a visa to study for up to three months in Estonia. Nevertheless, suppose your studies will extend beyond that. In that case, you need to register your place of residence and apply for an Estonian identity card.

What are the Documents you need for an Estonia Student Visa?

To apply for an Estonia student visa, you need to submit the following documents:

  • Valid passport: You must have a valid passport for at least three months. If you have a previous visa, you can attach a copy. Again, ensure your passport is in good shape.
  • Two recent passport-sized photos: The photos must be as current as six months. They must also be colored and taken on a light background.
  • Application form: You will need to complete the Estonia student visa application form online. Then, print it in a hard copy and sign it. Ensure to fill out all the spaces correctly. 
  • A letter stating why you want to enter Estonia 
  • Visa fee: You will need to pay a fee of €100 ($120). You will pay it together with submitting your application form at the embassy or consulate. After making the payment, you must attach the receipt to the application.
  • A letter of acceptance: Your letter of acceptance must be from the university and submit it as proof of your enrollment into the university. 
  • An objection letter from your school.
  • Bank statements: A document proves that you can take care of your financial needs throughout your stay in Estonia. It must be as far as six months back.
  • Health insurance: This is proof of valid health insurance in Estonia and the Schengen Area. It would help if you acquired health insurance with a minimum value of €30,000 ($35,500).
  • Flight confirmation
  • Proof of accommodation: It proves you have a place to live in Estonia. It could be your student accommodation, hotel reservation, rent agreement, or a family member’s residence in Estonia. After your admission, you can contact your school for this. 
  • Criminal record: You must obtain this document from the police in your home country, which states your criminal history.    

In addition to providing the documents, you must translate them into English if they are not initially in English.

How do you apply for an Estonia Student Visa?

To get an Estonia study visa, you should follow the steps below:

  • Book an appointment with the Estonian embassy or consulate in your country of residence
  • Submit your application form, together with the receipt of payment and other necessary documents. This could be in the form of an email or text message. 
  • Receive feedback on the success of your visa application from the embassy or consulate.
  • Travel to Estonia with the necessary documents 
  • Apply for an Estonia temporary residence permit. You will do this at Estonia’s Police Border Guard Board (PBGB) service office. 

Temporary Work Permit

You will need a temporary work permit if your study period is beyond one year. You must submit the appropriate documents. With the temporary residence permit, you can live in Estonia for up to five years. When you receive your temporary residence permit, you can register your accommodation address at the population registry.

You will also be eligible to work up to 15 hours (part-time) per week and 40 hours (full-time) during the holidays. As a worker, you will pay taxes like the Estonians. Additionally, you can easily find work that requires English as the standard language since the English language is widely spoken in the country.

What is the Processing Time to get your Estonia Student Visa?

Getting your Estonia student visa will take around ten to 30 days to process. The countdown will begin from the day you submit your application. When your application is ready, you will receive an email or text with your visa result from the Estonian embassy or consulate in your home country. 

How long can the Estonia Student Visa Permit you to stay?

The standard duration of a student visa in Estonia is one year. Nevertheless, if you are to stay longer than one year because of the nature of your studies, you will need to acquire a temporary residence permit. With the permit, you can stay in Estonia for five years. 

Does the Student Visa allow you to Work in Estonia?

With your student visa, you can work in Estonia as long as you obey the condition of work. Hence, your work must not affect your study. Remember, you must pass your exams, carry out your study duties and complete your program within the time range.

Can you live in Estonia with your Family with your Student Visa?

With your student visa, your family member can apply to join you through an Estonia family visa. They can stay with you throughout the one year you will spend in the country. This case also applies to a temporary residence permit. Your family member can apply to stay for the five years you will spend in Estonia. Please visit the Estonian Police and Border Guard Board`s website for the list of documents they need.

Can the Estonian Student Visa extend beyond One Year?

The student visa is designed to last for only one year. If you spend more than one year there, you are to obtain a temporary residence permit at PBGB.

Can you stay in Estonia after Graduation?

If you complete your study in Estonia, you can remain in the country for up to nine months to get a suitable job there. Thus, you will need to apply for an extended stay at the police border. If you find a good job, you can apply for a temporary residence permit to enable you to live in Estonia for five years. After that, you can go for your permanent work permit that can confer the ability to live indefinitely in Estonia.

How do you get a Permanent Residence Permit in Estonia?

After living in Estonia for five years, you can apply for a permanent residence permit. However, living in the country for five years as a student does not guarantee the eligibility to apply for your residence permit immediately. As a student, only half of your temporary residence permit counts for you. It means you have only spent 2.5 years in the country during your studies. 

Do you need Health Insurance as an Estonian Student?

All students outside Estonia/EU/EEA/Switzerland must obtain health insurance. This is because the Estonian Health Insurance does not cover students. Therefore, you must apply for private or international health insurance coverage. The insurance must cover all health-related issues, including injuries. Besides, it must be valid for the rest of your stay in the country. Since you are applying for an Estonian visa, you must add travel insurance before coming to the country.

Estonian Immigration Advisors

They work with the PBGB to help Estonian foreigners to settle well in the country. Their primary duty is to give legal advice on different legal conditions to live, study and work in Estonia. They also ensure employers and educational institutions inviting foreigners to their country know what to do. They offer free services in English, Russian and Estonian.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can international students work in Estonia?

Working in Estonia as an international student does not require an additional work permit. You can also work as long as 15 hours per week and must ensure your job does not affect your studies. 

How long does it take to get an Estonia student visa?

Getting your Estonia student visa will take around ten to 30 days to process. The countdown will begin from the day you submit your application. When your application is ready, you will receive an email or text with your visa result from the Estonian embassy or consulate in your home country. 

Is an Estonia visa easy to get?

According to the 2018 rejection rates, Estonia was among the easiest countries to obtain visas. It had only a 1.6% rejection rate. This means that 98.4% of the applicants receive a visa for a short stay in nay Schengen Area.

How much do students earn in Estonia?

As of 2020, an international student in Estonia can earn €3.48 gross per hour. Therefore, if you work full-time, you will make €584 per month.

Conclusion

If you meet the conditions, you can obtain an Estonia student visa to study in a program, not for up to one year. However, if you are to study for a more extended period, you should apply for a temporary residence permit. You can also consider the following reasons to visit Estonia this year.