Some of the sources said that living cost in Estonia is lower than other European countries. Or it can be said that it is still affordable for most people who are interested to move to Estonia for work or for study. However, if it is compared to living in Indonesia, as I am currently living in Indonesia, the living cost is approximately 51% higher than Indonesia. I put the data that I used in this article in the source links at the bottom.
So, how much the budget that we must save if we have a plan to stay in Estonia?
Why do I talk about Estonia?
Actually, this is the continued post from my article “Finding a Home | Estonia Launch Digital Nomad Visa”. In that article I explain about the launch of new Digital Nomad Visa (DNV) in Estonia on 1st August 2020. This visa is purposed for remote workers that have the flexibility in location, such as digital nomads, freelancers, and other location-independent entrepreneurs to work in Estonia. It is actually a great opportunity for digital nomads to work everywhere and giving the best output for their clients.
After sharing the information about the requirements to apply for DNV, I will share the information about the budget that we should prepare before moving to Estonia for a certain period.
Is it expensive to live in Estonia?
As mentioned above, the living cost in Estonia is relatively affordable and lower than the living cost in most other European countries, especially in Western Europe. It is very relief, for me. However, the living cost might differ based on the living style preferences, such as the choices of accommodation’s types, lifestyle and spending patterns. So, in my opinion, if we choose the premium class of accommodation to live, apply the premium lifestyle in daily routines and have a heavy spending pattern, the living cost might be higher than the living cost in Western Europe.
I will breakdown the living cost by the spending category based on the data from Study in Estonia’s website and other sources that will be listed in the sources links at the bottom of the article. The currency that will be used is the Euro (€), following the currency in Estonia.
Approximately the monthly expenditure for accommodation is around €300 – 500. The factors that influence the costs would be the location, accommodation qualities and types and also the season. And here are the details.
- The dormitories: € 80-150. This is the most possible housing alternative that can be choose by upcoming students. Because, most universities in Estonia provide their own dormitories and very welcome to help International students to settle their life in Estonia.
- Private flats: €200-510. This alternative will be suitable for people who plan to work and stay in Estonia.
Food and Beverage
This is the most important need that should be fulfilled every month. For students, €300 per month should be enough for enjoying a comfortable life. However, it also depends on the daily expenses in food. To save the money, it would be better if we cook for breakfast and dinner. So, we only spend our money to buy lunch. And we can organize that.
Some of the countries already have a great quality of public transportation. It means that we do not have to buy a car, as it will be expensive for the car itself and also for parking fee. Then, we just focus on using the public transportation. In Tallinn, the capital city of Estonia, there are a free public transport for Tallinn’s residents and for International students. We can also use the electric scooters to get around the city. There are two providers that should be looked at, which are Bolt and CityBee.
Besides of Tallinn, Tartu as the second largest city in Estonia that is Tartu has a different system of transportation for student. Here are the bus rates.
- One-hour ticket: €0.83
- One-hour concession ticket (student): €0.51
- One-hour ticket bought from bus driver: €2
- One-day ticket: €2.11 (The card balance should be at least €2.75)
- 10-day ticket: €7.03
- 10-day concession ticket: €3.52
- 30-day ticket: €15.34
- 30-day concession ticket for pupils and disabilities: €5.11
- 30-day concession ticket for university students and Estonian pensioners: €7.67
- 90-day ticket: €35.15
In Tartu also has a bike share system with 750 bikes in 69 stations across the city. Therefore, we need to consider about the membership prices:
- Annual membership: €30
- Weekly membership: €10
- Daily membership: €5
The membership include unlimited 60-minute rides (€1 for additional minutes).
Entertaining ourselves is very important to pamper ourselves from lots of hectic daily routines. Then, we need to spare the budget for the leisure thing every month.
- Theater ticket: €12-19
- Concert ticket: €8-30
- Nightclub ticket: €5-15
- Movie ticket: €4.5-5.7
- Sport (University sport clubs: €30-40 & Private sport clubs: €30-70)
This expense should also be prepared because sometimes we cannot calculate the monthly costs. From the news on December 2019, the electricity price in Estonia is USD 0.190 per kWh for households and USD 0.107 for business. But still, for me, it cannot be calculated how much should we pay for the electricity bill. To avoid the over pay, I used to control the daily electricity usage and always refer to the previous month’s bills.
So, is it expensive living in Estonia?
According to the above expenses, the living cost is still reasonable but it depends on our lifestyle and the type of accommodation that we prefer to stay at for a certain period. Those expenses that I described above are the major expenses that should be considered. Please feel free to give the input and idea about other expenses that should be covered while living in Estonia. Thanks for reading.