Getting around Tallinn, Estonia: information, costs and tips

Tallinn public transport

When traveling to Tallinn, you’ll probably have to use public transportation, because Tallinn with a population of 426,538 is not such a small city. In this article you will get the most reliable and complete information about public transport in Tallinn.

A brief overview of Tallinn’s transport system

Tallinn’s public transport system, which transports passengers throughout the city, includes buses, trolleybuses, streetcars, ferry services and rail transport. The Tallinn Transport Department is responsible for the operation of public transport in the city.

Fares and types of tickets

To travel in Tallinn, you will need single-ride tickets or a special card that you can add money to. When you enter the vehicle, you must validate your ticket or card in the electronic validator, which will beep and beep to tell you that you can use the vehicle. If your card is recharged for several days or months, you still need to validate it each time you travel.

What types of tickets are available?

  • 1-trip ticket bought from the driver : €2, you can’t make a transfer with this ticket.
  • 1-trip discount ticket bought from the driver: €2, not transferable. Only certain groups of people can buy this ticket.

A special green Smartcards (ühiskaart) can be loaded with different types of tickets. The cost of the smart card is €2. The card is, as I said, available for purchase at ticketing outlets and will be activated and recharged as soon as you need it.

  • 1 hour ticket: €1.5
  • Discounted one hour ticket : €0.75
  • 1 day pass (Tallinn 1 day e-ticket) : €4,50
  • 3-day pass (Tallinn 3 day e-ticket) : €7,50
  • 5-day pass (Tallinn 5 day e-ticket) : €9,00
  • One-month pass (Tallinn 30 day e-ticket) : €30.00
  • Discounted monthly pass (Tallinn 30 day e-ticket): €13,00

The fares are valid for 2021.

Ticket and travel card for public transport in Tallinn

Tickets and cards can be bought at special Rkiosk kiosks that can be found all around Tallinn – at the bus station, Tallinn airport and the Viru bus stop. You can also buy tickets and recharge smart cards at Maxima and Rimi supermarkets.

Where to buy a ticket for public transport in Tallinn

The penalty for fare dodging is €40, and if you do not show the controller a validated card or the necessary valid ticket, you will certainly be fined.

In addition to the smart card you can buy a Tallinn Card for 24, 48 or 72 hours. This card allows you to use public transport during the validity period of the card and visit museums in Tallinn at a discount or for free. The card can be purchased at the airport, bus and railway station, sea port (terminals A and D), hotel reception and tourist information desks. When travelling on public transport, this card must also be attached to the validator at the entrance each time. The card costs €25 for 24 hours, €37 for 48 hours and €45 for 72 hours.

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Public transport website

The Internet is well developed in Estonia, which means that you can find out all the latest information about the operation of public transport from the web. At Soiduplaan.tallinn.ee you will find up-to-date schedules of all modes of transport, opening times of certain routes, a map of all stops, fares, addresses of sales points, and you can plot a route from point A to point B. This means that the system will build you the best route between the stops, tell you where you need to change and how long it will take you to get there.

Buses in Tallinn

The most popular form of public transport of the Estonian capital is a bus. At the moment in the city there are 73 bus routes, which cover the entire city and suburbs. On the balance of the transport company are buses of the following brands: Scania, Volvo, MAN and Iveco. The buses on some routes, especially in the center, are modern, comfortable machines, but some routes are old, shabby Volvos, for example on the route 1A, which takes you from the center to the beach of Pirita.

Tallinn Man Bus

The bus stops have benches, a map of the city with routes, and a printed schedule of the routes running through that stop. The schedule of buses in Tallinn is about the following: from 5 am to 00:30 am with intervals of 4-60 minutes, depending on the popularity of the route, time of day and day of week. Buses, like other forms of public transport, operate all year round.

Bus stop in Tallinn

By the way, the bus is the only option to get to Tallinn airport from the center, other than cabs and private cars.

Trolleybuses Tallinn

The trolleybus network in Tallinn is not that big and consists of only 4 routes: 1, 3, 4, 5. On the roads of Tallinn can be seen trolleybuses of the following models: Škoda 14Tr/15Tr, Solaris Trollino 12AC/18AC. Trolleybus stops are no different from bus stops. The trolleybus schedule is approximately as follows: from 5 am till midnight at intervals of 7-20 minutes. The intervals are slightly longer in the evening and on weekends.

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Map at Tallinn trolleybus stop

Streetcar in Tallinn

In my opinion, the streetcar is the most comfortable means of public transport in Tallinn, although its network is not very developed and covers only the central part of the city. A little bit of history: the streetcar network in Tallinn, started to function in 1888, at that time there were horse-drawn streetcars. Currently the Tallinn tramway network consists of 4 streetcar routes, 36 stops, 85 trains and 42 km of tracks.

On streetcar routes operate both old trains in the form of the Tatra KTNF6 and modern Spanish low-floor streetcars CAF. CAF streetcars are very comfortable, clean, fast, quiet, and we like them a lot.

Each streetcar stop is equipped with benches and a map of Tallinn, showing all the city transport routes. On the poles is information with timetables for all the routes passing through this stop. The streetcar schedule is as follows: from 5 am till midnight with the intervals of 7-20 minutes.

Streetcar in Estonia

The map of public transport in Tallinn 2021 shows the routes of all streetcars. As can be seen, the key stop is Viru, through which all streetcars pass and where the pedestrian street to the historic part of town with the sights depart from. If you need to get to Tallinn airport, since last year it is convenient to go there by direct streetcar number 4.

Map of Tallinn streetcars and buses scheme

  • Route number 1 connects the industrial district of Kopli with the Kadriorg district.
  • Route No. 2 connects the Kopli neighborhood with Ülemiste.
  • Route No. 3 connects the Tondi neighborhood with the Kadriorg neighborhood.
  • Route No. 4 connects the Tondi and Julemiste neighborhoods. Modern streetcars go by the bus station and the historic center.

Rail transport

A little north of the Old Town is the main railway station in Tallinn, which is called Tallinn-Baltic (Balti jaam). The station is quite small (only 6 platforms), and has a supermarket, ticket booths, vending machines, ATM, a coffee shop and a small waiting room. Scoreboard arrivals and departures of trains also present.

From Tallinn Station you can go to the following cities: Keila, Paldiski, Riisipere, Aegviydu, Parnu, Viljandi, Tartu, Narva. Carriages are primarily carried out on modern Swiss trains Stadler FLIRT. Passenger transportation on the route Tallinn-Moscow with a stop in St. Petersburg is carried by Russian Railways company on night trains № 34 and № 33.

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Train at Tallinn railway station

Tallinn main bus station

In Estonia is very developed intercity bus service. Buses run more often than trains and the network is much more developed. Travel by bus is usually the cheapest, as there is very high competition. The most popular bus companies in Estonia are LuxExpress, Eurolines, Simple Express. It is these companies can get to Riga or St. Petersburg for €5. Compare prices of all carriers and buy tickets on the website Infobus.

The main bus station in Tallinn is Bussijaam located at Lastekodu 46, 10144 Tallinn, Estonia. The bus station has a café, ATM, waiting room, ticket sales, ticket machines for long-distance destinations, toilets, luggage room. In the waiting room there is a board with the arrival and departure platforms of buses.

Tallinn main bus station

Water transport

Since Tallinn is a major port on the Baltic Sea, it is not surprising that there is a developed ferry service. Most ferries and cruise ships arrive at the Port of Tallinn (Tallinna Sadam). Port here is huge, the passenger turnover is more than 10 million people a year! The port of Tallinn has three terminals – A, B, D. The main ferry destinations from Tallinn: Naissaar, St. Petersburg, Helsinki, and Stockholm. Fares from different companies vary greatly, for example, a one-way fare Tallinn-Helsinki will cost € 15 for Eckerö Lin, € 25 for Viking Line, € 25 for Linda Line and € 27 for Tallink. The cost depends on the finesse of the ship and the travel time.

Tallink cruise liner

Tallinn cabs

Cabs Tallinn refers to public transport, the car can be ordered by phone or taken at special cab stands, which are usually located near places with a crowd of people.

The fares for cabs in Tallinn are about the following: a landing €3,85; hour of waiting €11,82 (counting by the minute, even in traffic jams); tariffs per kilometer 06:00 – 23:00 €0,69 and 23:00 – 06:00 €0,80.

Cab Tallinn

The driver must give you a receipt with the fare after the trip. Be careful and make sure that the driver does not take you in circles and takes the shortest route.

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If you need to comfortably get somewhere at a certain time, for example, to the airport, you can order a transfer in a Russian company on the Internet. At any time of the day the driver will meet you and take you to your destination. The price will be fixed and you will not be charged any additional fees. You can order a cab to any point in Tallinn, for example to the hotel, port or train station, and to any city in Estonia: Narva, Tartu, Rakvere or even St. Petersburg.

Rent a car in Tallinn

A car is an opportunity to see Estonia’s beautiful towns and natural sights without depending on public transport. If you are traveling in Estonia without your car, you can rent one on a reliable international website with a Russian version of Rentalcars, which compares prices from both local and well-known international companies. Prices in the off season for long-term rentals start at €10 per day.

Rent a car in Tallinn

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Transport in Tallinn

Transport in Tallinn

Tallinn’s main transport is buses running on more than 68 routes. Also on the Estonian capital 9 trolley bus lines and 4 streetcar lines are laid. Public transport operates daily from 6.00 to 23.00. Find timetables for buses, trolleybuses, streetcars, regional and commercial buses and trains, as well as choose the best route and find the right stop on the Tallinn public transport website. If you are interested in sightseeing in Estonia’s capital city, it is best to find out more about it beforehand, so you can plan your route and not lose precious travel time.

Tickets and Prices

Transport in Tallinn

It’s better to buy tickets in advance in newsstands than directly from the driver. The difference in price is more than 50%. In kiosks you can also buy a QR-ticket, which will cost 1.50 euros. It is also possible to buy special tickets that are valid for 1 hour (€1.50), 24 hours (€4.50), 72 hours (€7.50) and 120 hours (€9). Tickets bought at a kiosk or from the driver become valid only after being validated. Current fares: on the website. If you have purchased the Tallinn Card (discussed below), public transport services are free until the card expires.

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Cab

Cabs are available on the street or by phone. Prices for transportation depend on the operator, so it’s better to ask about the cost of travel in advance. A price list is posted in each car. On average it costs from 2 to 5 euros for getting into a car and from 0,50 euros per kilometer. Waiting ranges from 9.5 to 12 euros per hour. Each driver must have his or her ID card, usually located on the front panel. The car must be equipped with a meter. At the request of the passenger, the driver must print out a receipt.

You can order an individual transfer to the airport or another city with the service kiwitaxi.ru:

Tallinn Card

Transport in Tallinn

What is it

The Tallinn Card (TC) is a city ticket that gives its holder the opportunity to use city transport for free, visit more than 40 museums and attractions and take part in one of the tours (audio guide, walking, bus or bicycle tour).

With TC you get discounts at the water-bathing complex, scooter rentals, go-karting, as well as in some restaurants and stores in the city. A nice addition to the TC is a guidebook with a description of all TC locations in the city. In this Russian-language brochure you will find opening hours of museums and attractions, as well as tips on how to get to the point of interest by capital transport.

The cost of the Tallin Card (2022)

Validity period For children under 14 years old (EURO) Adults (euro)
24 hours 17 29
48 hours 22 43
72 hours 27 52

Children under 7 years old do not need to buy TC: public transport, guided tours, most museums and attractions are free for them. Before you buy TC, it is worth knowing the fees for the card for children and adults.

Where to buy the Tallin Card

The Tallin Card can be purchased online or in Tallinn from travel agencies, the seaport or one of the hotels on this list.

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