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Guidelines for Tartu residents

Guidelines for Tartu residents

Dear residents of Tartu!

Due to the rapid spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19), we are consolidating on this page the instructions and guidelines to be observed in regard to the spreading of the virus. COVID-19 is a droplet infection spread from person to person via sneezing and coughing, and the SARS-CoV-2 virus, which spreads through contaminated surfaces and unwashed hands.

How to stop the spread of the coronavirus?

  • The most effective way to prevent infection is to keep your distance. It is recommended that a mask be worn in crowded areas and especially indoors, where it is not possible to keep your distance from other people. Enclosed crowded spaces should be avoided, if possible.
  • Hand hygiene must be observed. Warm water and soap should be used for hand washing, with alcohol-based hand sanitizer being utilised in public places.
  • When sneezing or coughing, you must cover your mouth and nose with a disposable tissue. The used tissue should be thrown away immediately, after which you should wash your hands. If there is no napkin, use your sleeve (inside elbow portion), not your bare hand.
  • If you are sick, you should remain at home, even if your symptoms are mild. If you are experiencing any symptoms, you should suspect infection with the coronavirus and contact your family doctor.

The following guidelines will be updated on a running basis.


The testing tent is located in the lower parking lot of the Tartu Song Festival Grounds. Free testing is only available with a referral from your family doctor.

Instructions from the Health Board:

  • You must arrive for testing at the agreed upon time, not significantly earlier or later.
  • A person who suspects that they are infected with the corona virus may not travel by public transport to take the test.
  • It is recommended that you wear a personal mask and disinfect your hands, while keeping a distance of two metres.
  • If you are exhibiting coronavirus symptoms and it is not possible to visit the testing tent in person, this should be stated when agreeing on the test time, in which case providing a sample at home is recommended.


Schools in Tartu are beginning the new academic year with regular in classroom studies. However, the following rules should be followed to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

In schools:

  • students experiencing even mild symptoms must also stay home; 
  • the route to school should preferably be covered on foot, by bicycle or other means of light transport, rather than via public transport;
  • it is important to wash your hands and keep your distance;
  • the organization of teaching established at the school must be observed in order to prevent the risk of infection, including following the prescribed movement routes and other principles governing the dispersion of students.

In nursery schools:

  • only healthy children may be brought to nursery schools, this includes the parent; 
  • the reception of the child in the nursery school and the transferring of the child to the parent should, if possible, be arranged in the yard or breezeway;
  • it is recommended that daily nursey school activities be performed in smaller groups, with priority being given to outdoor activities over indoor activities.

Public transportation and waste management


Entrances to city buses are equipped with disinfectants.
It is recommended that a mask be worn on the bus.

From 31 August, city buses will once again switch to autumn timetables. Changes can be viewed in greater detail in the https://web.peatus.ee/ travel planner.

Tartu Smart Bike Share 

The city is doing its best to make the use of Smart Bike Share system bicycles as safe as possible during the period when viruses are spreading, and will be disinfecting the bicycles every day, as required, at bicycle docking stations and in the workshop. Smart Bike Share system users must also be responsible and comply with important health safety regulations:

  • if possible, wear gloves when riding,
  • after you have finished riding the bicycle, wash or disinfect your hands immediately,
  • keep your distance from other road users at bicycle docking stations and while riding the bicycle,
  • the 2+2 rule also applies to Tartu Smart Bike Share bicycles; don’t ride in groups.

waste management

  • The Tartu City Waste Station, located at Jaama 72c and Selli tn 19, is open Mon–Fri 10.00–18.00 and LP 10.00–16.00. 
  • Very important - please don’t collect waste separately by type if you are sick or suspect that you have been exposed to the virus. All waste must be placed in a plastic bag, sealed carefully and thrown away as mixed municipal waste (subject for incineration or landfilling).



  • In shops that remain open people must adhere to the principle that they may move alone or in pairs and keep at least 2 meters distance from other people.  Shops, post offices, pharmacies and service providers must ensure that people waiting behind the door follow the 2 + 2 rule and that there are no queues. 
  • Disinfectants must be provided at the location where the disinfectant is most needed of all shops which remain open. Stores that are open must enforce this rule.

ow to behave at the market and in shopping centres:

  • Visit shops as seldom as possible, make a list of necessary items for a longer period.
  • If possible, visit the store during off hours.
  • Keep at least 2 meters distance from other people.
  • When shopping, do not touch goods (both packaged and unpackaged) for no reason.
  • Unpackaged fruit and vegetables must be washed thoroughly. Washing packages is also recommended.
  • Avoid using cash for payment of purchases.
  • Use home delivery services as much as possible.
  • After visiting shops, make sure to properly wash your hands.

If you are ill, you cannot go to the store or the pharmacy. Don’t delay buying medicine until you are ill.

Food delivery

Based on the need to minimize contact between people, the Tartu City Government recommends that you avoid visiting shops and instead order delivery of food to your home or a parcel machine, if possible. If visiting a shop is unavoidable, it is recommended that you carefully plan your shopping list and also plan ahead. The City Government is also calling on people to help family members and relatives who lack the ability or skills to place orders online.

The page is being updated on a continuous basis.

Information about Coronavirus disease COVID-19

The national coronavirus crisis hotline is 1247.

  • If you suspect that you have been infected with the coronavirus, you should contact your general practitioner (GP), ask for assistance through the GP hotline 1220 (if calling from outside of Estonia: +372 634 6630) or in case of need, call the ambulance at the emergency number 112.
  • COVID-19 symptoms are similar to those of the flu. The virus may cause coughing, fever, and trouble breathing.
  • The best defence against infection is washing hands and avoiding contact with infected people.
  • After returning from abroad, you have to stay in home isolation for 14 days.

Read more about the coronavirus on the website of the Health Board.


The City of Tartu opened an environment on its homepage, where it is calling on people in need, people ready to help and citizens’ initiatives to make themselves known. Information is awaited from anyone who is ready to contribute to helping others or who knows someone who is in need of help during the crisis. The city is also awaiting information on citizens’ initiatives that are focused on assisting fellow city residents. All volunteers definitely need to be healthy and ready to contribute their time in accordance with specific agreements.

Additional information www.tartu.ee/tartuaitab (In Estonian)

Emergency situation

Last changed 02.09.2020