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Moving to Malta - Expats in Malta
Malta appeals to expats with its enticing tax advantages, such as the Global Residence Program. An English-speaking environment makes it easier for immigrants to communicate and adapt to the country. Malta offers a mix of history, Mediterranean climate and coastline.
Opportunities in gaming and finance careers are endless with the emerging market trends. Malta is an attractive location for an exceptional Citizenship Investment Program by Naturalization. Malta is a small but lively country that attracts those interested in Mediterranean life and a favourable tax climate.
With it’s sunny weather, beautiful coastline and his beaches, it’s understandable why Malta is a popular choice for expats in Europe. Moving to Malta as an expat involves several key considerations regarding residency, healthcare, and work opportunities. Here’s a overview of each aspect:
Residency in Malta
1. Residence Permit Types: Besides the standard residence permit, Malta offers several specific permits such as the Highly Qualified Persons Rules for individuals in certain high-demand professions, and the Global Residence Programme for retirees and non-EU nationals.
2. Application Process: The residency application process involves submitting documents like proof of accommodation, sufficient income or employment, health insurance coverage, and a clean criminal record. Applications are processed by the Maltese authorities, and timelines can vary.
3. Permanent Residency: After five years of legal residence, expats can apply for permanent residency in Malta, which grants them indefinite stay rights.
Healthcare in Malta
1. Public Healthcare: Malta's public healthcare system is accessible to residents and offers services at subsidized rates. Non-residents might have to pay higher fees for services.
2. Private Healthcare: Private healthcare facilities are available and generally offer shorter waiting times and more amenities. Expats often choose private insurance to cover these services.
3. Emergency Services: Emergency medical services are provided by public hospitals, and Malta has a number of private clinics and hospitals offering emergency care as well.
Work Opportunities in Malta
1. Job Sectors: Besides the main sectors like finance, tourism, and gaming, Malta has a growing technology and digital sector, offering opportunities in IT, software development, and e-commerce.
2. Job Search: Expats can search for job opportunities through online portals, recruitment agencies, and networking events. Knowing English is a significant advantage in the job market.
3. Work Permits: Non-EU citizens need a job offer from a Maltese employer to apply for a work permit. Employers typically initiate the permit application process on behalf of the employee.
Living in Malta
1. Cost of Living: Malta's cost of living can be high, especially in popular areas like Valletta and Sliema. While Malta can be affordable in certain aspects like groceries and public transport, housing costs in popular areas can be high. Renting is common, and leases often require a deposit and several months’ rent in advance.
2. Climate: Malta enjoys a Mediterranean climate with hot, dry summers and mild winters, making it attractive for outdoor activities and tourism.
3. Cultural Integration: Malta has a rich cultural history influenced by various civilizations. Expats can explore Maltese traditions, cuisine, and festivals while integrating into the local community.
Some places you might consider living include:
- Valletta: The capital of Malta, this small city of just 5,000 people has a lot to offer residents. It is in a desirable location where residents can visit its famous historical sites or wander around the main shopping area of Republic Street and Merchant Street.
- Sliema: Found on the eastern side of Malta, Sliema is a bustling town that is home to 22,000 people. With lots of cafes and restaurants to sample and 5km-long waterfront, there is plenty here for you to explore in your free time.
- Marsaskala: Located in southeast Malta, this fishing town provides a quieter feel than other places and is known for its rocky coastline and stunning bay, as well as being a World UNESCO heritage site.
- Mellieha: A hilltop village in the northern part of Malta with a population of 11,000 residents, its sandy beaches and natural scenery make it an attractive place for expats who like being in relaxed surroundings.
- St. Paul’s Bay: Situated on the northern coast of Malta, St. Paul’s Bay is extremely popular with the expat community. Expatriates are drawn to this area for its affordability, picturesque surroundings and proximity to amenities. St. Paul’s Bay offers a laid-back lifestyle that appeal to many expats, particularly retirees and families.
- Gozo: Five kilometres off the Maltese coast lies Gozo, commonly referred to as “Malta’s quaint and unique little sister.” For starters, Gozo is only about a third the size of Malta and is more tranquil and rural. In Malta, you’ll find the hustle and bustle of big cities, while in Gozo, the way of life is still rooted in tradition.
Legal and Administrative Considerations
1. Taxation: Malta offers tax benefits for expats through various residency and domicile schemes. Understanding tax obligations and benefits is essential for financial planning.
2. Education: Malta has both public and private educational institutions, including international schools that cater to expat families. Schooling options vary in curriculum and language of instruction.
3. Transportation: Public transport in Malta includes buses and ferries, and car ownership is common for convenience, especially in rural areas. Malta International Airport, located in Valletta, is the most convenient method for travel overseas, flying to busy locations across the world, including London, Madrid and Munich.
One of the main forms of travel within the islands is buses, which provide a regular and free service for users with a Tallinja card. However, having a car may be a more suitable mode of transport for some expats, as it means you don’t have to rely on public travel and can start the journey at a time convenient to you.
Preparing thoroughly and understanding these aspects can help expats transition smoothly into living and working in Malta. Researching specific requirements based on individual circumstances is recommended for a successful relocation experience. Before moving, it's crucial to research specific details related to your citizenship, intended length of stay, and personal circumstances. Consulting with immigration experts or legal advisors can also provide tailored guidance based on your situation.

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