AGS Worldwide Movers

Tallinn >

Expat Advice: Culture Shock in Tallinn, Estonia

What is the name of the city or town that you are reporting on?

Tallinn

Did you receive any cross-cultural training for your move abroad? If yes, was it before or after the move?

No

Need health insurance in Estonia? William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a Quote

Need health insurance in Estonia? William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.

If they speak another language in your new country, do you speak the language? If yes, did you learn the language before you moved or while abroad? If no, are you planning to learn the language?

Most young people speak English, but after arriving I took courses in Estonian.

Were you worried or concerned about culture shock before you moved abroad?

Not enormously

Moving to Estonia?

Get FREE quotes from up to 6 international movers from The Relocator. Save up to 50% on your move to Estonia! The Relocator offers an easy and free service to receive quotes from renowned and certified movers worldwide. They only work with qualified moving companies. Over 500 movers worldwide have already joined their service to help you get the best price and service for your international move. Get your moving quotes.

How significant was the culture shock you experienced when you moved abroad?

It was basic; toilets had push buttons, door knobs were door levers, society in general looked the same; Shopping malls, downtown, the beach.

My culture shock mostly came from after being here for awhile where I experienced some of the old Russian and Estonian tension from the Post-Soviet Era. But anyone who comes here for a period of time will experience that.

Expats often talk about going through the "stages of culture shock." Examples include the honeymoon phase, the irritation-to-anger stage, the rejection of the culture stage, and the cultural adjustment phase. Do you feel like you went through these or any other stages as you settled into the new culture?

First arriving
Absolutely Great

4 Months
Kind of normal

6 Months
Well adapted, can adjust between here and US

9 Months
Some things tick you off, miss home some

12 Months
Really want a McDonalds cheeseburger

What, if any, were some of the changes you noticed in yourself that might have been caused by culture shock? These might include things such as anger, depression, anxiety, increased eating or drinking, frustration, homesickness, etc.

Estonia has caused me to be a little impatient at times because some things aren't done in a timely manner.

When I'm back home I have some discontent toward people who say (isn't that country part of Russia), and so I'm angry at the U.S. Education system Long winters will turn you introverted, because they are dark and last 8 months. I haven't gotten it yet, but they call it seasonal anxiety disorder. Its easy to get here.

What are some things you appreciate most about the new culture?

Their song festivals, Beautiful native language, Love of Nature, Long lived history, Story of survival of a culture

What are the most challenging aspects of the new culture?

Russians vs. Estonians Post-Soviet integration

Did you "commit" any embarrassing or humorous cultural blunders? If you did and you'd like to share them, please do tell!

I went into Sauna with a towel. Everyone is supposed to go completely naked together. It's normal here. I was laughed at because I felt weird hanging out naked with a bunch of guys. Now it doesn't even phase me since it is part of the culture.

Do you have any advice or thoughts about culture shock you would like to share?

When you get here, Enjoy yourself, there is a lot more than meets the eye. The real Estonia is outside of Tallinn ;)

William Russell Health InsuranceInternational Health Insurance

Get a quotes for international health insurance from our partner, William Russell.
Get a Quote

10-Tips-for-Living-in-Estonia10 Tips for Living in Estonia

Estonia has a lower cost of living, welcoming locals and rich traditions. As of August 1, 2020, they're also making it easier for global nomads to spend up to a year working remotely from Estonia. What to pack? Bring your warm, reflective clothing to prepare for the long winter.

Healthcare-in-EstoniaHealthcare in Estonia

Medical care in Estonia is not up to Western standards, but is best in Tallinn, Tartu and Parnu. Our Estonia Healthcare Guide covers health insurance, finding an English-speaking doctor, best hospitals and more.

Countries-Introduce-Global-Nomad-Visas-During-PandemicCountries Introduce Global Nomad Visas During Pandemic

Many people are escaping their routines and temporarily moving overseas during the pandemic. These countries are welcoming them with open arms by making it easy for visitors to stay and work remotely for months or even a year. The most recent addition to the list is Croatia - they've just launched online applications for their digital nomad visa.

William Russell Health InsuranceInternational Health Insurance

Get a quotes for international health insurance from our partner, William Russell.
Get a Quote

Living in Estonia GuideLiving in Estonia Guide

Estonia has a lower cost of living, welcoming locals and rich traditions. As of August 1, 2020, they're also making it easier for global nomads to spend up to a year working remotely from Estonia.

Estonia Forum Estonia Forum
Meet other expats and talk about living in Estonia.

Healthcare in EstoniaHealthcare in Estonia

Medical care in Estonia is not up to Western standards, but is best in Tallinn, Tartu and Parnu. Our Estonia Healthcare Guide covers health insurance, finding an English-speaking doctor, best hospitals and more.

Real Estate in EstoniaReal Estate in Estonia

Real estate listings in popular cities and towns in Estonia.

Retiring in EstoniaRetiring in Estonia

Advice for people retiring in Estonia.

Contribute to Estonia Network Contribute
Help other expats and newcomers by answering questions about the challenges and adventures of living in Estonia.

Countries-Introduce-Global-Nomad-Visas-During-PandemicCountries Introduce Global Nomad Visas During Pandemic

Many people are escaping their routines and temporarily moving overseas during the pandemic. These countries are welcoming them with open arms by making it easy for visitors to stay and work remotely for months or even a year. The most recent addition to the list is Croatia - they've just launched online applications for their digital nomad visa.

Copyright 1997-2021 Burlingame Interactive, Inc.

Privacy Policy Legal