Aviation sector

Aviation in Estonia is safe, secure, professional, environmentally friendly and considers national defence principles.

In 2018, more than 3 million passengers travelled through Tallinn Airport, of which more than 20 000 domestic passengers. 11,000 tons of cargo and mail were sent by plane.

The European Union internal market is fully open for all the European Union air carriers and connections between Estonia and third countries are covered by intra-governmental agreements. Last year’s most popular destinations for flights leaving from Estonia were Frankfurt, Helsinki, Warsaw and Riga.

The state-owned Tallinn Airport also controls regional airports in Kuressaare, Kärdla, Pärnu and Tartu, also airfields in Ruhnu and Kihnu. Kuressaare, Kärdla and Tartu airports are also open for international air traffic.

Aviation is regulated by European and national legal acts as well as other relevant international standards. The tasks of the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications include the development of aviation legislation and bringing it into compliance with the regulations of the European Union and international agreements.

Foto: Marko Mägi

Aviation management

Air-navigation services in Estonia are provided by different air navigation service providers.


Estonian Air Navigation Services, a state-owned company, fulfils the task of ensuring safe and smooth air-navigation and provides air traffic services in the air space of Tallinn flight information region (TALLINN FIR/UIR). In addition, the company controls the use of air space, offers communication and alert services and aviation related consultations, compiles and distributes air traffic information and conducts expertise.

Airports in Estonia are operated by Tallinn Airport Ltd.

Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communication has a leading role in coordination of civil-military cooperation.

Civil aviation at state level is supervised by the Estonian Civil Aviation Administration.


Connections with islands

Road Administration is responsible to organize air connections with large and small islands.

In the summer of 2019, contract were signed with Lithuanian air carrier JSC aviation company "TRANSAVIABALTIKA" (registration number 159973821, location Karmelava, Kaunas dist. LT-54460, Lithuania) to operate Tallinn-Kärdla-Tallinn route. The contract was signed as a result of public procurement and on fixed term of 31.05.2024. Tallinn-Kuressaare-Tallinn route contract was extended from 2019 to 2020.

The flight schedule and tickets are available in Tallinn, Kärdla and Kuressaare airports, through travel agents and on website http://www.saartelennuliinid.ee/en.

Air connection to Ruhnu island will be operated by Diamond Sky OÜ and flight will take place in winter season between October to April.


Operating licence

All the European Union air carriers must hold an operating licence for the carriage of passengers, post and cargo.

The operating licences of air carriers are issued in Estonia by the Minister of Economic Affairs and Communications against an appropriate application. More specific terms and requirements applicable to the issue of the licence are laid down in the European Parliament and the Council of the European Union regulation no. 1008/2008/EC with the common rules for the provision of air services.

The operating licence is issued by the Minister of Economic Affairs and Communications to the following companies: Pakker Avio AS, Panaviatic AS, Smartlynx Airlines Estonia OÜ, AS Airest, Fort Aero AS, Aerocopter OÜ, Regional Jet OÜ, Diamond Sky OÜ and NyxAir OÜ.


International organisations and co-operation


NEFAB develops North European airspace block co-operation between Estonian, Latvia, Finnish and Nordic ministries, air traffic servicing units and aviation boards and the goals of the co-operation are laid down with the Single European Sky (SES) regulation. NEFAB develops the capacity of European sky air traffic, its safety, aviation and transport system and attempts to reduce environmental impacts.


Last updated: 28 August 2019