Bringing your car over
The Maltese drive on the left so bringing a car down from the UK is often a worthwhile option for the many British people who move to Malta. Here’s some useful information about what you need to know if you are going to bring over your car to Malta.
Importing your car
You can import a vehicle into Malta but whether you can use it depends on your residency or status:
- If you are a tourist, your car can stay in Malta for six out of 12 months, while retaining its foreign registration plates. Maltese residents (not just Maltese people, but anyone who has declared Malta to be their residence) cannot drive a vehicle with foreign registration plates (unless they have been given permission from Transport Malta).
- If you are resident in Malta, you can only drive the car you have imported when it has Maltese number plates, that is, when it has been registered in Malta. You are given seven days to apply and following this are fined €30 for every day after that.
To register your car you will need to visit the Lands Transport Directorate in Floriana and submit the relevant application forms (see below for link) depending on whether you are registering a vintage or modern car.
In addition to the forms, you will also need to present the Foreign Registration Certificate (log book), an invoice, the notice of arrival and five recent photographs.
Registration tax is calculated upon the CO2 emissions of your car, particulate matter (diesel engines only) and length. There is also a minimum tax on used vehicles (including electric and hybrid cars) imported from non-EU countries and which were manufactured more than four years ago.
For more detailed information about registering your car, click here.
Transport: getting around in Malta
Public transport in Malta is made up of a fleet of buses run by the the Malta Public Transport. The buses are air-conditioned and operate on all the mainline routes.
For a full list of rates click here.
The bus service serves a number of routes (click on the link for more information about the exact routes):
Summer Bus Routes - During the summer buses operate on different timetables that reflect the needs and demands of our customers
Winter Bus Routes - Some routes which are more popular during the Summer period can decrease its frequency.
Night Buses – All night buses are labelled 'N' a Route Number (Eg. N13)
Airport Services– Airport routes are denoted by 'X' followed by the route number. Buses on these routes are all equipped with luggage storage space
Park & Ride - The Floriana Park and Ride offers you an easy, quick and low-cost solution to parking in
Valletta and Floriana, with over 750 spaces and a regular high-frequency shuttle service.
Please click here
to view the list of outlets from where you can buy bus tickets
There is a white taxi service in Malta where you can be picked up from anywhere except a bus stop.
A special taxi service also operates from the airport on a 24-hour basis. You can find more information by clicking here.
A word of advice, it is always advisable to settle the rate before you start your trip.
Car and coach rentals
If you wish to do a lot of travelling to the farther reaches of the island, it is a good idea to rent a car. Road signs are mostly in English and people drive on the left in Malta. You can find major international brands and local car hires in both Malta and Gozo. You will be able to use an international and/or national driving licence.
If you wish to be driven around then there are also a number of companies that offer chauffeur-driven cars, minivans and coaches.
You can find a list of car rental companies here.
Malta’s changing landscape offers unique opportunities to the cyclist. The landscape changes from sandy sea views, to rocky beaches, mild hills, Mediterranean rubble walls and country views. You’ll also be able to find a good number of shops that sell cycling and sports gear dotted around the island.
Cycling for pleasure and fitness in the Maltese islands is gaining ground and lately a few cycle lanes have been also introduced.
For help with cycling in Malta, including ideas on routes to take, maps, directions places of interest and useful general information, visit the Cycle Malta and Gozo website.
You can find a list of bicycle rental companies here.
Ferries and water taxis
There is a regular ferry service that leaves from Cirkewwa in Malta and Mgarr in Gozo. The trip lasts about 20 minutes and you can travel with your car should you wish to. There is a café and a little shop on the ferry so you can have a snack and drink and buy some basics you may have forgotten such as sun block, shavers and perhaps shampoo and conditioner. During peak season – like Easter, certain public holidays and Carnival – the ferry runs on a shuttle service to avoid long queues and waiting time.
There are regular trips between Malta, Gozo and Comino. United Comino Ferries offers a round trip service from Marfa and Ċirkewwa, Malta to the Blue Lagoon, Comino on a daily basis. The trip takes some 25 minutes to Comino.
You can also take a round trip ferry service from Mġarr Harbour Gozo and from Ċirkewwa Malta (near the ferry) or Marfa to Comino Island / Blue Lagoon. Boats leave every hour (on the hour) on a daily basis, depending on the demand. The trip takes around 15 minutes.
Travel to the magnificent Grand Harbour in Valletta in style on a water taxi. There is a shuttle service from Valletta to Vittoriosa and Senglea using traditional Maltese boats. Click here for more information.
Upper Barrakka Lift
This new lift was opened in December 2012 and links the Grand Harbour to the picturesque Upper Barrakka Gardens and Valletta city centre. It can be found on the original site where its predecessor, which was dismantled in 1983, operated between 1905 and 1973.
The lift is 58 metres high and can carry 21 people at a go. The journey takes around 25 seconds, making it the quickest way into the city from the Valletta Waterfront.
At nighttime the lift is beautifully lit so do try to give this a go during the evening too.
Tour buses and sightseeing
You may have moved to Malta as a resident but you might wish to get your bearings by taking the tourist bus around Malta. Who knows, you just might discover some new places you never knew of! There are two tourist bus companies operating in Malta:
Both City Sightseeing and Malta Sightseeing offer a hop-on, hop-off tourist bus service which tours the north and south of Malta as well as Gozo. For more information about the two companies, click the links below: