Citizens of the EU/Schengen and most other European countries, USA, Japan, Australia, and many other countries do not need a visa to enter Estonia. Visas are however requested e.g. from citizens of Canada, Russia, the Ukraine. Exact information on the regulations in force at any given time is available from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (www.vm.ee).
Should you need a visa to attend APPSEM'04, please contact the workshop organization at appsem04(at)cs.ioc.ee well before the workshop for an official invitation letter.
There exist direct flights to Tallinn from London, Paris, Amsterdam, Frankfurt, Hamburg, Berlin, Prague, Warsaw, Moscow, Kiev, Oslo, Copenhagen, Stockholm, Helsinki, Vilnius, Riga. For information, see the web homepages of Tallinn Airport (www.tallinn-airport.ee) and Estonian Air (www.estonian-air.ee). The city is 2 kms from the airport and you reach it either by taxi or bus No. 2 (timetable).
For ferry connections from/to Stockholm and Helsinki, see the web pages of Tallink/Hansatee (www.tallink.ee), Silja Line (www.silja.ee) and Eckerö Line (www.eckeroline.ee).
Estonia (just as Finland, Latvia, Lithuania) uses Eastern European Time, EET, which is one hour ahead of Central-European Time, CET.
The electricity supply is 220 volts AC, 50 Hz. European-style 2-pin plugs are in use.
The currency in Estonia is Estonian crown (EEK). EEK is pegged to EUR at the rate of 1 EUR = 15.64664 EEK.
Major bank cards are widely accepted in Tallinn and other cities. You may be requested to present your passport or driver's licence in proof of identity when paying with a card. Bank offices and currency exchange points are numerous and have very reasonable opening hours. Cash advance is also possible from ATMs. The most widely accepted travellers cheques are Am Ex and Thomas Cook.
Postage on letters (up to 20 g) [postcards] within Estonia is 4.40 [3.60] EEK, to the Baltic and Nordic countries 6.00 [5.00] EEK by air mail and 5.50 [4.50] EEK by surface mail, to the rest of Europe and the former USSR 6.50 [6.00] (only air mail is possible), to the rest of the world 8.00 [7.50] EEK (only air mail is possible). Air mail post has to be marked with blue "Prioritaire / Par avion" stickers.
Post offices are open during the normal shopping hours. Stamps are also sold in newsstands.
As of 1 Feb. 2004, area codes are not used in Estonia, but they used to be there, and there was the initial 0 in the area codes that had to be dropped when calling to Estonia from abroad. A number in the old formatting such as (07) 654 321 has now become 765 4321.
International calls to Estonia: dial the prefix for intl. calls (00 in most countries), then the country code 372, then the subscriber's number.
International calls from Estonia: dial the prefix 00 for intl. calls, then your country code etc. Calls within Estonia: just dial the full 7- or 8-digit subscriber's number.
The emergency number (fire brigade, ambulance) is 112. For police only, dial 110.
There are 3 GSM operators in the country: EMT, Radiolinja Eesti (RLE) and Tele2.
Payphones abound in Tallinn, but take Elion phonecards only (there are no coin-operated payphones). The three different cards cost 30, 50 and 100 EEK and can be bought from newsstands and supermarkets.
Internet cafes (with terminals) in Tallinn include: Espresso (Estonia pst 7, 15 EEK/30 mins, 2 terminals), Kohvik@Grill (Aia 3, in WW Passaazh shopping center, entrance from Vana-Viru, 15 EEK/30 mins, 4 terminals), Pitstop (pitstop.f1.ee, more of a bar than a cafe, Mündi 2a, next to Raekoja plats, 2 terminals, 1 EEK/1 min). Other places: Arvutisaal (Vana-Posti 2, 2nd floor, 30 EEK/1 hr, 6 terminals), Tallinn Central Library (Estonia pst 8, free of charge), National Library (www.nlib.ee, Tõnismägi 2, 7th floor, 10 EEK/15 mins). Internet terminals/Internet access are offered also by most hotels.
The are more than 100 public areas of Wireless Internet access in Tallinn. About half of these are free, to use the others, one has to pay and in many cases this presupposes having an Estonian GSM subscription. The free WiFi areas in the city include: Cafe Pegasus (Harju 1, SSID: pegasus, mailserver: mail.neti.ee), Kaheksa Bar (Vana-Posti 8, SSID: Kaheksa, mailserver: mail.online.ee), Mauruse Pubi (Estonia pst. 8., SSID: maurus, mailserver: mail.uninet.ee), Cafe Moskva (Vabaduse plats 10, SSID: uninet, mailserver: mail.uninet.ee), Kohvik@Grill (Aia 3, in WW Passaazh shopping center, SSID: uninet, mailserver: mail.uninet.ee), Club Avenüü (Suure-Karja 10, SSID: avenyy, mailserver: mail.stv.ee), Deli 24 Shop & Buffet (Estonia pst 1, in Melon shopping center, SSID: deli, mailserver: mail.online.ee), Cafe Balti Sepik (Süda 1, SSID: uninet, mailserver: mail.uninet.ee), National Library (Tõnismägi 2, SSID: raamatukogu, mailserver: mail.neti.ee), Passenger Port Terminal A (SSID: Welcome to Estonia, mailserver: mail.neti.ee). A clickable map with all public WiFi areas is available at www.wifi.ee.
The public city transportation system of Tallinn, consisting of bus, tram and trolleybus traffic, is quite efficient. The lines are many and are operated frequently. Most stops have timetables (affixed to the stop signpost) and many also have a map of the transport system on display (in the waiting booth). Tickets are available from drivers, from special city transportation ticket stands and newsstands, they are validated by punching. Buses, trams and trolleybuses are all in one ticket system, a special ticket or a completion ticket in addition to an ordinary one is needed in an express bus. A ticket is valid for a single journey and costs 15 EEK when bought from the driver and 10 EEK when bought from a stand; a set of 10 tickets costs 70 EEK.
Some of the recommendable taxi companies are: Tulika Takso (www.tulikatakso.ee), phone 1200 or 612 0000, E-takso/Takso 1700 (www.takso.ee), phone 1700 or 605 9700, and Peretakso (www.peretakso.ee), phone 16111 or 646 0006. The charge is typically 7 EEK per km.
A searchable and scalable online map of Tallinn is available from the website of Tallinn City Government, www.tallinn.ee.
For tourist information on Estonia in the Web, check the web pages of the Estonian Tourist Board (www.visitestonia.com). For tourist information specifically on Tallinn, check the web pages of the Tallinn Tourist Board (www.tourism.tallinn.ee). InYourPocket.Com's unofficial Estonia and Tallinn pages (inyourpocket.com/estonia/, inyourpocket.com/estonia/tallinn/) make an even more useful reading. For an in-depth background info on Estonia, we recommend the Estonian Institute's www.estonica.org.
The Tallinn Tourist Information Center is located at Niguliste 2/Kullasepa 4 in the middle of the Old Town. Winter opening hours: Mon-Fri 9-17, Sat 10-15, Sun closed.