Let's enlist at least some main reasons to leave Estonia. Your comments are welcome.
Sometimes you just get bored. You want changes, something new. Boring ;)
Living on the edge, even if it's the edge of European Union, can be boring. Not much happens here. People are hungry for events of any kind. Even stormy weather. Options to travel around are very limited: Latvia to the south and Finland to the north by ferry. Russia is to the east, but visas are required. It takes two days to get from Estonia to Germany or Austria by car, and three days to France or Italy.
- Better Job
You want a better job, and such jobs are available in other countries, but not in yours. It can be a better paid, more challenging, more interesting, more comfortable or better in some other way job. Whatever.
There are a few software development companies in Estonia having great teams and working on interesting projects: Codeborne, Ignite, Zero Turnaround… But the country is very small, so is variety of jobs.
- No Job
After beginning of the current world financial crisis in 2008 chances of getting the first job for graduates in Estonia became very few. Companies can't afford hiring inexperienced professionals, but still need more IT specialists. In the very same time recent graduates can't find job because they don't have any previous working experience. Most software developer job offers state at least 2-3 year experience.
This summer the situation changed for good. Some companies have realized the interdependency or simply have tired searching for already taken experienced employees and started to hire graduates and student. With caution.
- Bad Climate
Quite many people living in Estonia are bored with lots of cloudy and rainy days or even weeks, chilly summers, wet and cold or snowy and freezing winters… They need more sun, warmer weather, and they are ready to move for that.
- Weakening Social Security
Seems like government saves more and more on medical system. Doctors and other medical personnel are underpaid. As a result experienced professionals and even graduates leave the country. Government tries to resolve the problem cutting jobs and paying more those who remains. It takes more and more time to get to a doctor if possible at all for some specialists.
Government makes employee conditions worse with no compensation for it. For example, by the new Labor law notice periods from employers and compensations to employees in case of cutting jobs were decreased. It supposed to be compensated by increasing unemployment compensation. But then compensations were cancelled. Now by the new law employees have worse conditions and that is not compensated. It's one but not only example.
- Feeling Like a Foreigner
Estonia still has about quarter Russian speaking population. Many of them live in a parallel world with no good knowledge of Estonian. And many of them don't feel like home in Estonia. Neither in Russia. They are foreigners everywhere. And some want to leave in quest for new home.