Visa and residence permit
All students who are not Estonian citizens or EU citizens (including EEA countries and Switzerland) need a temporary residence permit for study. EU citizens should obtain a temporary right of residence in Estonia.
Please note that Estonia does not issue a "study visa", all NON-EU students should apply for temporary residence permit for studying (TRP). When certain conditions are met, then it is possible to apply for C- (short term) or D-visa (long term) to travel to Estonia and apply for residence permit after arrival.
The visa and residence permit application process will usually begin after student has been accepted to study on chosen programme and after university has forwarded required acceptance documents.
In order to obtain temporary right of residence, a student should register his/her place of residence in the Local Government authority of the place of residence within 3 months from the day of entry to Estonia. In addition, a student has to apply for an Estonian ID-card within 1 month from obtaining the temporary right of residence. More information can be found on the Estonian Police and Border Guard Board web page.
Students who are third country nationals (not EU citizens) have to apply for a temporary residence permit for study at the nearest Estonian Embassy or Consul in their home country or country of residence (more info on the page of the Estonian Ministry of Foreign Affairs).
If there is no Estonian Embassy or Consul in your home country or country of residence, you should contact the nearest Estonian Embassy. More information about application process and all the required documents (including legal income proving certifications) can be found from Estonian Police and Border Guard Board website.
Starting from the 1st of October 2010, all third country nationals who already stay legally in Estonia and wish to study at master’s or doctoral level have a right to apply for residence permit for study at the Police and Border Guard Board in Estonia.
A temporary residence permit is valid for maximum of one year and should be renewed at least 2 months before the date of expiration at the Police and Border Guard Board. Estonian ID-card issued to a student is a document, stating that a student was issued a temporary residence permit for study in Estonia.
Students from third countries have to register their place of residence in the Local Government authority within 1 month from the arrival to Estonia on the basis of residence permit for study.
Migration advisors work in the Estonian Police and Boarder Guard Board, with aim help foreigners to settle in Estonia. Personal advisors give legal advice about different legal grounds to live in Estonia and the necessary documentation for people coming to study and work here but also to employers and educational institutions who invite foreigners. The counselling service specializes in residence and temporary stay, but also documents and citizenship issues.
Advisors work in in Estonian, English and Russian. Service is free of charge.
Contact information and working hours
They advise via phone, email, Skype call or by appointment. Make a reservation in order to meet with the advisor or to make a Skype call.
Phone: +372 612 3500 (Mon-Fri 9.00-15.00)
By previous reservation, it is possible to meet with advisors in Estonia:
IMPORTANT: temporary residence permit for studying must be renewed every year at least 2 months before the date of expiration!
Settling with spouse/family
Your spouse/child may apply for a temporary residence permit if you are coming to Estonia for master's or doctoral studies. For more information and required documents, please visit Estonian Police and Border Guard Board`s website.
Phone: +372 612 3000
Travel and consular issues: (+372) 6 377 44
Don't forget: All the institutions that provide international study programmes are experienced in advising international applicants. International offices are always there for you – do not hesitate to ask their help when you have questions about temporary residence permit for studying!