FAQ

FAQ2019-09-30T16:38:12+03:00
1. Who can take part in the Welcoming Programme?2019-09-30T18:11:45+03:00

People who have arrived in Estonia to work*, study, accompany family members or for other purposes and have legally been residing here for less than 5 years are eligible for participation in the Welcoming Programme.

  1. Foreign nationals who have been granted a temporary Estonian residence permit under the Aliens Act or Act on Granting International Protection to Aliens;
  2. citizens of the European Union who have been granted a temporary Estonian residence permit and to whom an identity document has been issued;
  3. members of the families of the citizens of the European Union who have been granted a temporary Estonian residence permit.

The programme also contains courses for children and schoolchildren.
Participation in the training courses within the Welcoming Programme lies in the domain of responsibility of the Estonian Police and Border Guard Board.

*Except those who have come to Estonia for a shorter term and have a work-related visa.

2. How can I become a participant of a Welcoming Programme course?2019-09-30T18:11:58+03:00
To participate in these courses you need to have Estonian living permit. Learn more about the programme in here.

To take part in a Welcoming Programme course, you need an invitation to take part in the Welcoming Programme issued by the Police and Border Guard Board.

If you are a foreign national newly relocated to Estonia who has received a residence permit or right of residence after 1 August 2015:

The Police and Border Guard Board will give you the notice about the availability of participating in the programme in one of its service points or will automatically send it to you by e-mail.

If you are a foreign national newly relocated to Estonia who has received a residence permit or right of residence before 1 August and has been in Estonia for a shorter period than 5 years.

You have to apply for with the Police and Border Guard Board to participate in the Welcoming Programme. You can file your application here.
Then the Police and Border Guard Board will send you the notice about its decision concerning your participation in the Welcoming Programme within 30 working days by post or e-mail.

If the applicant meets the conditions for the participation in the Welcoming Programme (has legally resided in Estonia on the basis of a residence permit or right of residence for a period shorter than five years), the Police and Border Guard Board will send the notice about the availability of participating in the programme to the applicant by post or e-mail or give the notice to the applicant in one of its service points (for citizens of the European Union).

You can file your application here, send it by e-mail (ppa@politsei.ee) or post (to the Estonian Police and Border Guard Board, Pärnu mnt. 139, 15060, Tallinn) or do it in person in one of the Police and Border Guard Board’s service points. The locations of the service points are specified here.

If the application is approved, you will have to register for the Welcoming Programme yourself. You can do it here.

3. I arrived in Estonia before 01 August 2015. Do I have the right to take part in the Welcoming Programme?2019-09-30T18:12:07+03:00
To participate in these courses you need to have Estonian living permit. Learn more about the programme in here.

Yes, you do have the right to take part in the programme if you have legally resided in Estonia for a period shorter than five years.

You have to apply for with the Police and Border Guard Board to participate in the Welcoming Programme. You can file your application here, send it by e-mail (ppa@politsei.ee) or post (to the Estonian Police and Border Guard Board, Pärnu mnt. 139, 15060, Tallinn) or do it in person in one of the Police and Border Guard Board’s service points. The locations of the service points are specified here.

4. Which courses do I have the right to participate in?2019-10-02T12:47:27+03:00

Any foreign national who has arrived in Estonia may choose the courses from the following list of training modules:

basic module
work and entrepreneurship
education
research
family
basic Estonian language course (level A1)

Please pay attention to the following:

– Only newly relocated immigrants aged under 15 can take part in the module for children and teenagers.

– Only the beneficiaries of international protection can take part in the international protection module.

– The beneficiaries of international protection cannot take part in the language training module within the Welcoming Programme. Estonian language training is provided to the beneficiaries of international protection in Estonia by the Ministry of Social Affairs under the Act on Granting International Protection to Aliens.

For further information about language learning options for the beneficiaries of international protection, please contact the Accommodation Centre for Asylum Seekers.

5. Do I need to carry an identity document issued by the Police and Border Guard Board in order to take part in a training course?2019-09-30T18:12:30+03:00

A European Union citizen residing in Estonia must hold an identity card, a third-country national residing in Estonia must hold a residence permit card.

6. Do I have the right to take part in the Welcoming Programme several times?2019-09-30T18:12:39+03:00

No. You have the right to take every training course and the language course only once during a 5-year period.

7. For how long will I be eligible for the Welcoming Programme?2019-09-30T18:13:07+03:00

A foreign national may take part in the training modules and the basic language course within the Welcoming Programme over a period of 5 years. This period starts from the moment a citizen of the European Union obtains the right of residence; as far as citizens of third countries and the family members of EU citizens are concerned, the five-year period starts when the decision is made to issue a temporary residence permit / temporary right of residence to such citizens.

8. I have filed an application taking part in the Welcoming Programme, but the Police and Border Guard Board and/or the organiser of the courses has informed me that I have no right to take part in the Welcoming Programme. Why? Which training courses may I take part in?2019-09-30T18:13:17+03:00

The training courses within the Welcoming Programme aim to provide knowledge and information which will foster initial adaptation. If you have legally resided in Estonia for a longer period, it is likely that you have already obtained the necessary basic knowledge.

Foreign nationals who have legally resided in Estonia for a period longer than 5 years and those who have already completed the Welcoming Programme can take part in the integration courses conducted by the Integration Foundation. These comprise an Estonian constitution and citizenship training module, an Estonian culture module, general Estonian language modules (levels A2, B1 and B2) and activities for language and cultural immersion.

Further information

The Integration Foundation also provides counselling and information services on site in its counselling centre, by phone and online concerning the availability and accessibility of public services and other activities for promoting integration.

Further information

9. What does “assigning for a training course” mean?2019-09-30T18:13:29+03:00

Being assigned for the Welcoming Programme is required for taking part in a training course within the Welcoming Programme. Foreign nationals are assigned for the Welcoming Programme by the Police and Border Guard Board, which issues a letter of notification about to the foreign national stating that he or she has been assigned for the programme. There are two ways of getting assigned for the programme:

Those foreign nationals who have been issued a residence permit or right of residence or have obtained the right of residence in Estonia after 1 August 2015 are assigned for the to the Welcoming Programme by the Police and Border Guard Board automatically. The notice about being assigned for the Welcoming Programme is sent to the foreign national by e-mail or post or issued in one of the Police and Border Guard Board’s service points (for citizens of the European Union).

Those newly relocated immigrants who have been issued a residence permit or right of residence or have obtained the right of residence in Estonia before 1 August 2015 but have legally resided in Estonia for a shorter period than 5 years and want to take part in the Welcoming Programme need to apply for with the Police and Border Guard Board for being assigned for the Welcoming Programme.

10. Is completing the Welcoming Programme mandatory?2019-09-30T18:16:16+03:00

No. The Welcoming Programme is optional for all foreign nationals (except for the international protection training course, which is mandatory for the beneficiaries of international protection in Estonia). No sanctions of any kind are to be expected if you do not participate in the Welcoming Programme.

11. Can the fact that the Welcoming Programme has not been taken or completed become grounds for the residence permit not being granted or renewed or for the residence permit being cancelled?2019-09-30T18:17:07+03:00

No, no sanctions of any kind are to be expected if you do not participate in the Welcoming Programme or do not complete it.

12. How much does participation in the Welcoming Programme cost?2019-09-30T18:17:16+03:00

Participation in the courses within the Welcoming Programme is free. The programme is financed by the Ministry of the Interior of the Republic of Estonia and by the European Union through the European Social Fund.

13. How often do the training courses of the Welcoming Programme take place? How large are the groups of learners?2019-09-30T18:17:25+03:00

The courses of the Welcoming Programme are held once in three months. Information about the schedule of the training courses is available here. Dates of the courses and frequency of the courses are determined by the organisers of the courses, who also assemble groups of learners. Further information is available here. Depending on the course and its time, the size of the group may vary and will normally be between 5 and 25 learners.

14. What is the language of instruction at the courses of the Welcoming Programme? In what languages are course materials and the information about the Welcoming Programme available?2019-09-30T18:17:36+03:00

The languages of instruction at the courses of the Welcoming Programme are English and Russian. All the course materials and the information about the courses of the Welcoming Programme are available for everyone in English and Russian.

NB! In addition to English and Russian, the courses of the international protection module are also taught in French and Arabic depending on the demand.

15. What does the completion of the Welcoming Programme look like?2019-09-30T18:17:51+03:00

At the end of a training day, all the participants of the training module need to fill in a feedback and self-assessment survey. At the end of the language course, the participants take a test and fill in a feedback survey. The proof of the completion of the Welcoming Programme is a certificate, which is issued by the instructor in an electronic format or, upon request, in hard copy.

16. Who can I turn to if I have questions about the Welcoming Programme or the training courses within the Welcoming Programme?2019-09-30T18:18:02+03:00

If you have any questions, please contact info@settleinestonia.ee

17. Who is responsible for the Welcoming Programme?2019-09-30T18:18:25+03:00

The Welcoming Programme is in the area of responsibility of the Ministry of the Interior of the Republic of Estonia.

Information concerning the Welcoming Programme can be obtained and press inquiries can be sent to info@siseministeerium.ee.

18. Which expenses related to participating in the Welcoming Programme are compensated? What is the procedure for receiving compensation?2019-09-30T18:18:40+03:00

One can apply for the compensation of transport and accommodation expenses in relation to taking part in the training courses in case the participant’s place of residence is further than 50 km from the training location. It is important to hold a written proof of participation in the course in such case.

Please follow the links for the guidelines concerning the compensation of expenses and the application form.

19. What does the Welcoming Programme consist of?2019-09-30T18:18:54+03:00

The Welcoming Programme consists of a level A1 Estonian language course and seven modules on various topics:

– Basic module: basic information about life in Estonia in general

– Specialised modules: work and entrepreneurship, education, research, family, children and teenagers, international protection

20. Who is not eligible for the Welcoming Programme?2019-09-30T18:19:17+03:00
To participate in these courses you need to have Estonian living permit. Learn more about the programme in here.

Workers who have arrived in Estonia on the basis of a temporary visa can follow this link for information about the services provided by the Estonian state.

21. How to cancel your registration?2019-11-13T10:14:32+02:00

If you already signed up for a Settle in Estonia programme but turns out you can’t participate then please cancel your registration by sending a message to info@settleinestonia.ee

1. Who can take part in the Welcoming Programme?2019-09-30T18:11:45+03:00

People who have arrived in Estonia to work*, study, accompany family members or for other purposes and have legally been residing here for less than 5 years are eligible for participation in the Welcoming Programme.

  1. Foreign nationals who have been granted a temporary Estonian residence permit under the Aliens Act or Act on Granting International Protection to Aliens;
  2. citizens of the European Union who have been granted a temporary Estonian residence permit and to whom an identity document has been issued;
  3. members of the families of the citizens of the European Union who have been granted a temporary Estonian residence permit.

The programme also contains courses for children and schoolchildren.
Participation in the training courses within the Welcoming Programme lies in the domain of responsibility of the Estonian Police and Border Guard Board.

*Except those who have come to Estonia for a shorter term and have a work-related visa.

2. How can I become a participant of a Welcoming Programme course?2019-09-30T18:11:58+03:00
To participate in these courses you need to have Estonian living permit. Learn more about the programme in here.

To take part in a Welcoming Programme course, you need an invitation to take part in the Welcoming Programme issued by the Police and Border Guard Board.

If you are a foreign national newly relocated to Estonia who has received a residence permit or right of residence after 1 August 2015:

The Police and Border Guard Board will give you the notice about the availability of participating in the programme in one of its service points or will automatically send it to you by e-mail.

If you are a foreign national newly relocated to Estonia who has received a residence permit or right of residence before 1 August and has been in Estonia for a shorter period than 5 years.

You have to apply for with the Police and Border Guard Board to participate in the Welcoming Programme. You can file your application here.
Then the Police and Border Guard Board will send you the notice about its decision concerning your participation in the Welcoming Programme within 30 working days by post or e-mail.

If the applicant meets the conditions for the participation in the Welcoming Programme (has legally resided in Estonia on the basis of a residence permit or right of residence for a period shorter than five years), the Police and Border Guard Board will send the notice about the availability of participating in the programme to the applicant by post or e-mail or give the notice to the applicant in one of its service points (for citizens of the European Union).

You can file your application here, send it by e-mail (ppa@politsei.ee) or post (to the Estonian Police and Border Guard Board, Pärnu mnt. 139, 15060, Tallinn) or do it in person in one of the Police and Border Guard Board’s service points. The locations of the service points are specified here.

If the application is approved, you will have to register for the Welcoming Programme yourself. You can do it here.

3. I arrived in Estonia before 01 August 2015. Do I have the right to take part in the Welcoming Programme?2019-09-30T18:12:07+03:00
To participate in these courses you need to have Estonian living permit. Learn more about the programme in here.

Yes, you do have the right to take part in the programme if you have legally resided in Estonia for a period shorter than five years.

You have to apply for with the Police and Border Guard Board to participate in the Welcoming Programme. You can file your application here, send it by e-mail (ppa@politsei.ee) or post (to the Estonian Police and Border Guard Board, Pärnu mnt. 139, 15060, Tallinn) or do it in person in one of the Police and Border Guard Board’s service points. The locations of the service points are specified here.

4. Which courses do I have the right to participate in?2019-10-02T12:47:27+03:00

Any foreign national who has arrived in Estonia may choose the courses from the following list of training modules:

basic module
work and entrepreneurship
education
research
family
basic Estonian language course (level A1)

Please pay attention to the following:

– Only newly relocated immigrants aged under 15 can take part in the module for children and teenagers.

– Only the beneficiaries of international protection can take part in the international protection module.

– The beneficiaries of international protection cannot take part in the language training module within the Welcoming Programme. Estonian language training is provided to the beneficiaries of international protection in Estonia by the Ministry of Social Affairs under the Act on Granting International Protection to Aliens.

For further information about language learning options for the beneficiaries of international protection, please contact the Accommodation Centre for Asylum Seekers.

5. Do I need to carry an identity document issued by the Police and Border Guard Board in order to take part in a training course?2019-09-30T18:12:30+03:00

A European Union citizen residing in Estonia must hold an identity card, a third-country national residing in Estonia must hold a residence permit card.

6. Do I have the right to take part in the Welcoming Programme several times?2019-09-30T18:12:39+03:00

No. You have the right to take every training course and the language course only once during a 5-year period.

7. For how long will I be eligible for the Welcoming Programme?2019-09-30T18:13:07+03:00

A foreign national may take part in the training modules and the basic language course within the Welcoming Programme over a period of 5 years. This period starts from the moment a citizen of the European Union obtains the right of residence; as far as citizens of third countries and the family members of EU citizens are concerned, the five-year period starts when the decision is made to issue a temporary residence permit / temporary right of residence to such citizens.

8. I have filed an application taking part in the Welcoming Programme, but the Police and Border Guard Board and/or the organiser of the courses has informed me that I have no right to take part in the Welcoming Programme. Why? Which training courses may I take part in?2019-09-30T18:13:17+03:00

The training courses within the Welcoming Programme aim to provide knowledge and information which will foster initial adaptation. If you have legally resided in Estonia for a longer period, it is likely that you have already obtained the necessary basic knowledge.

Foreign nationals who have legally resided in Estonia for a period longer than 5 years and those who have already completed the Welcoming Programme can take part in the integration courses conducted by the Integration Foundation. These comprise an Estonian constitution and citizenship training module, an Estonian culture module, general Estonian language modules (levels A2, B1 and B2) and activities for language and cultural immersion.

Further information

The Integration Foundation also provides counselling and information services on site in its counselling centre, by phone and online concerning the availability and accessibility of public services and other activities for promoting integration.

Further information

9. What does “assigning for a training course” mean?2019-09-30T18:13:29+03:00

Being assigned for the Welcoming Programme is required for taking part in a training course within the Welcoming Programme. Foreign nationals are assigned for the Welcoming Programme by the Police and Border Guard Board, which issues a letter of notification about to the foreign national stating that he or she has been assigned for the programme. There are two ways of getting assigned for the programme:

Those foreign nationals who have been issued a residence permit or right of residence or have obtained the right of residence in Estonia after 1 August 2015 are assigned for the to the Welcoming Programme by the Police and Border Guard Board automatically. The notice about being assigned for the Welcoming Programme is sent to the foreign national by e-mail or post or issued in one of the Police and Border Guard Board’s service points (for citizens of the European Union).

Those newly relocated immigrants who have been issued a residence permit or right of residence or have obtained the right of residence in Estonia before 1 August 2015 but have legally resided in Estonia for a shorter period than 5 years and want to take part in the Welcoming Programme need to apply for with the Police and Border Guard Board for being assigned for the Welcoming Programme.

10. Is completing the Welcoming Programme mandatory?2019-09-30T18:16:16+03:00

No. The Welcoming Programme is optional for all foreign nationals (except for the international protection training course, which is mandatory for the beneficiaries of international protection in Estonia). No sanctions of any kind are to be expected if you do not participate in the Welcoming Programme.

11. Can the fact that the Welcoming Programme has not been taken or completed become grounds for the residence permit not being granted or renewed or for the residence permit being cancelled?2019-09-30T18:17:07+03:00

No, no sanctions of any kind are to be expected if you do not participate in the Welcoming Programme or do not complete it.

12. How much does participation in the Welcoming Programme cost?2019-09-30T18:17:16+03:00

Participation in the courses within the Welcoming Programme is free. The programme is financed by the Ministry of the Interior of the Republic of Estonia and by the European Union through the European Social Fund.

13. How often do the training courses of the Welcoming Programme take place? How large are the groups of learners?2019-09-30T18:17:25+03:00

The courses of the Welcoming Programme are held once in three months. Information about the schedule of the training courses is available here. Dates of the courses and frequency of the courses are determined by the organisers of the courses, who also assemble groups of learners. Further information is available here. Depending on the course and its time, the size of the group may vary and will normally be between 5 and 25 learners.

14. What is the language of instruction at the courses of the Welcoming Programme? In what languages are course materials and the information about the Welcoming Programme available?2019-09-30T18:17:36+03:00

The languages of instruction at the courses of the Welcoming Programme are English and Russian. All the course materials and the information about the courses of the Welcoming Programme are available for everyone in English and Russian.

NB! In addition to English and Russian, the courses of the international protection module are also taught in French and Arabic depending on the demand.

15. What does the completion of the Welcoming Programme look like?2019-09-30T18:17:51+03:00

At the end of a training day, all the participants of the training module need to fill in a feedback and self-assessment survey. At the end of the language course, the participants take a test and fill in a feedback survey. The proof of the completion of the Welcoming Programme is a certificate, which is issued by the instructor in an electronic format or, upon request, in hard copy.

16. Who can I turn to if I have questions about the Welcoming Programme or the training courses within the Welcoming Programme?2019-09-30T18:18:02+03:00

If you have any questions, please contact info@settleinestonia.ee

17. Who is responsible for the Welcoming Programme?2019-09-30T18:18:25+03:00

The Welcoming Programme is in the area of responsibility of the Ministry of the Interior of the Republic of Estonia.

Information concerning the Welcoming Programme can be obtained and press inquiries can be sent to info@siseministeerium.ee.

18. Which expenses related to participating in the Welcoming Programme are compensated? What is the procedure for receiving compensation?2019-09-30T18:18:40+03:00

One can apply for the compensation of transport and accommodation expenses in relation to taking part in the training courses in case the participant’s place of residence is further than 50 km from the training location. It is important to hold a written proof of participation in the course in such case.

Please follow the links for the guidelines concerning the compensation of expenses and the application form.

19. What does the Welcoming Programme consist of?2019-09-30T18:18:54+03:00

The Welcoming Programme consists of a level A1 Estonian language course and seven modules on various topics:

– Basic module: basic information about life in Estonia in general

– Specialised modules: work and entrepreneurship, education, research, family, children and teenagers, international protection

20. Who is not eligible for the Welcoming Programme?2019-09-30T18:19:17+03:00
To participate in these courses you need to have Estonian living permit. Learn more about the programme in here.

Workers who have arrived in Estonia on the basis of a temporary visa can follow this link for information about the services provided by the Estonian state.

21. How to cancel your registration?2019-11-13T10:14:32+02:00

If you already signed up for a Settle in Estonia programme but turns out you can’t participate then please cancel your registration by sending a message to info@settleinestonia.ee