How to get there
You can get to Malta by air or sea. Flights between Malta and Rome take an hour and London is three hours’ away. Connections to most European capitals take between 1 hour and 3 and a half hours. There are daily ferry crossings to Sicily and regular routes to other Italian ports.
In most cases visitors, coming for pleasure or business, only need a valid passport or other ID document, in the case of EU citizens.
Non-EU citizens, wishing to visit Malta for a longer period of time, need to have the following documents:
Citizens from European Union Member States, and European Economic Area Member States and Switzerland have the right to enter, stay and live in Malta. If they decide to live in Malta, they must ask for a residence card within three months after arrival on the island.
There are many quality accommodation options in Malta, ranging from three-, four- and five-star hotels to flats and homes for rent. On the Visit Malta website, you can find the different kinds of accommodation available.
There are no limits to what you can take out of the country. You may, however, have to prove the items are for personal use if the customs officers consider the quantity of goods to be excessive.
Vaccines and health precautions
No specific vaccines are needed before visiting the archipelago. Emergency hospital treatment is free for European Union citizens. Private medical assistance is advisable for other nationalities.
Thanks to extensive investment over recent years, Malta has a modern and efficient infrastructure. It is therefore very easy to find high quality commercial or residential property.
Malta has two official languages: Maltese and English. However, most of the inhabitants speak at least one other European language, mainly Italian owing to the proximity of that country.
Malta works on Central European Time (CET) which is one hour ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) and six hours ahead of American EST. Clocks in Malta are put one hour forward for summer time, between the last week of March and the last week of October.
Festivities and celebrations in Malta
The Maltese islands have an extremely rich culture, which is linked to its eclectic, secular history. Consequently, Malta offers a busy programme of entertainment throughout the year, including annual festivals and special occasions. See www.new.visitmalta.com/en/events for further information about the events and festivities.
Malta has 14 official holidays in the year:
New Year’s day 1 January
St. Paul’s Shipwreck 10 February
St Joseph’s day 19 March
Liberty day 31 March
Good Friday Moveable
International Workers’ day 1 May
Sette Giugno (7 June) 7 June
Feast of Saints Peter and Paul 29 June
The Feast of the Assumption 15 August
Our Lady of Victories 8 September
Independence day 21 September
The Immaculate Conception 8 December
Republic day 13 December
Christmas 25 December
The private sector generally works a 40-hour, five-day week. Working hours for industry are from 7 o’clock in the morning to 4:30 in the afternoon, with a break for lunch. Shop opening hours are from 9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., but they can get authorisation to stay open until 10:00 p.m., if they wish. Many shops close for lunch.
Opening hours for government offices vary, but civil servants work from 7:45 a.m. to 5:15 p.m., with a 45-minute lunch break. Between 16 June and 30 September, they work from 7:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. without a break.
Living in Malta
Many expatriates have chosen to live in Malta for a wide variety of reasons: