Narva Castle in Estonia and Ivangorod Fortress in Russia
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Travel Essentials

Tipping

Overview

Since Estonia's independence in 1991, greater numbers of tourists are visiting Tallinn and Pärnu. Tipping has become a more common practice in restaurants, bars, and hotels, though it is not considered obligatory. If the service in an Estonian restaurant was anywhere from good to great, then 10 percent of the bill is an appropriate tip. If the service was poor, do not tip. Some restaurants in tourist areas may add a service charge to the bill. Inspect your tab carefully before tipping. Remember, waitstaff and bartenders do not necessarily expect tips. 

Estonia joined the European Union in 2004, and has adopted the euro (€) as its national currency. Tips are accepted in the euro. 

Tipping Guide

Setting Gratuities
Transportation Taxi drivers do not expect a tip. If you want to acknowledge good service, round up to the nearest euro.
Hotels Porters, concierges, and maids also do not expect to be tipped, but if you want to show appreciation for good service, €1 or €2 would be appropriate.  
Restaurants, Bars, Cafés

Unless a service charge is added to your bill, tip waitstaff 10% in restaurants, bars, and cafés.

In cafés, there may be a tip jar. Coins are fine, and not expected. 

Terms for Payment and Tipping

The official language of Estonia is Estonian. However, Russian is the next most-widely spoken language. Finnish, German, and English are also understood. In the table below are terms in Estonian and Russian that may help  you in point-of-payment situations. 

English Estonian Russian
tip (noun) jootraha (yoht-ra-ha) Чаевые (chayevyye) (cha-ee-vyee-ye)
the bill/total arve (ar-ve) счёт (schot) (SHYOT)
how much does it cost?

kui palju see maksab?

Сколько? (Skol'ko?) (SKOL-kah?)

money raha (ra-ha) Деньги (den'gi) (DIEN-gee)
please palun (PA-LOON) Пожалуйста (pozhaluysta) (pa-ZHA-loo-sta)
thank you aitäh (ai-tah) Спасибо (spasibo) (spa-SEE-bah)
yes jah (YA) Да (da) (DAH)
no ei (A) Нет (nyet) (NYET)

Sources include: Tallinn City Tourist Office & Convention Bureau

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