About Malta

General 

Malta is an archipelago of islands situated in the Mediterranean Sea south of Sicily. The total area is 316sq km (122sq miles). The capital and largest city is Valletta and the longest distance from south-east to north-west is about 27km. the length of Malta’s shoreline is 137km. Malta’s coastline has many harbours, bays, creeks, sandy beaches and rocky coves. The population of Malta is around 400, 000. 

Languages

 Official languages are Maltese and English. Many people also speak a third language being, Italian, French, German, Arabic or Spanish.

Religion

Religion is predominantly Roman Catholic but Freedom of religion is enshrined in the constitution.

Main Industries

The service industries of tourism, banking and insurance are the backbone of the economy.

Malta acts as a hub for financial services. Over the years it has attracted a number of overseas banks and funds.

Malta’s Tourism Industry

The Maltese Islands offer various attractions sought for by a variety of tourist segments all year round. Whether the purpose for travelling is historical, cultural, simple relaxation or enjoying the sun and sea, the Maltese Islands are ideal. 

The Maltese Islands are marketed as an ideal venue for international conferences and specialised training. Various hotels and organisations provide conference facilities. Complemented by its hospitality and mild climate, Malta is the ideal location for the provision of training in various fields.  

Weather & Climate

The Maltese Islands are set in the heart of the Mediterranean with a climate that is heavily influenced by the surrounding seas. The Maltese Islands are characterised by a mild climate, and rainfall is limited. The hottest period is between mid-July and mid-September. The climate permits tourists to visit Malta all year round. 

The graph below is an approximate representation of Malta’s Weather and Climate.

Accommodation rates & Spending Money

The Maltese Islands have accommodation to suit all tastes and seasons.

Deluxe options with health and spa facilities are a possibility as well as club hotels with a range of sports and outdoor activities. Apartments, aparthotels and farmhouses give added flexibility, while hotels provide all manner of extras from a wide range of dining options to excursions and casinos.

In summer months one may prefer a seafront location with lido and water sports: in winter, one may wish to choose exactly the same. The superb climate and near year-round sun mean that seafront locations are just as much an option in any season.

The following are general guidelines as to the accommodation rates and spending money. Please note that prices quoted are indicative and vary depending on the time of the year, length of stay and lifestyle.

Accommodation Type Price
5 Star Hotel   Around 150 Euros per night on a bed & Breakfast basis.
4 Star Hotel Around 100 Euros per night on a bed & Breakfast basis.
3 Star Hotel Around 60 Euros per night on a bed & Breakfast basis.
Apartment Around 600 Euros per month per person.

Spending Money: Around 30 Euro per day (depending on lifestyle). 

Public Transport

The Maltese Islands are not very large, which makes getting around relatively trouble-free.

The public bus service on Malta and Gozo is a good way to get around as buses serve the major tourist areas, go practically everywhere and are cheap and efficient. The cost of a bus route ranges from €0.47 and the longest bus journey takes about fifty minutes; the average ride is between twenty and thirty minutes. For more information visit:

http://www.maltatransport.com/en/

Gozo Channel Services  

Gozo Channel Services include a minimum of 24 daily departures. It is also the Company’s policy to carry out extra trips when there is the need to minimise queuing and waiting time.

The itinerary involves a 30 minutes crossing. Passengers can enjoy panoramic views of the Maltese Islands. Public transport is available to and fro ferry terminals. A sea plane service links Grand Harbour in Valletta to Mgarr Harbour in Gozo. There are also regular boat services between each island and Comino.
For additional information visit: http://www.gozochannel.com

Malta International Airport

The Malta international airport is considered to be one of the main hubs in the Euro-Mediterranean region used by many international airlines.

 www.maltairport.com 

Currencies & ATMs

On 1st January 2008 Malta adopted the Euro as its official currency. From this date onwards, the Euro became legal tender in Malta and Gozo, thus businesses will accept only payments in Euro. For more information visit: www.euro.gov.mt

Banks are normally open until early afternoon from Monday to Friday, and until midday on Saturday.  Some banks/branches work longer hours.  Summer and winter opening hours may differ. Exchange bureaux at Malta International Airport are open 24 hours a day.  International bankcards are accepted and foreign currency is easily exchanged. 

Banks, Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) and exchange bureaux can be found all over the Islands. The majority of hotels, larger shops and restaurants also accept payment in the main international currencies. Branches of commercial banks and ATMs are found in almost every town or city in Malta. Given the short distances in Malta, access to any is relatively easy.  You will find bank branches and ATMs at walking distance from the MITC premises.

 In line with regulations in force and ahead of the issue of EU Regulations on controls of cash entering or leaving the Community, any person entering or leaving Malta carrying cash or other monetary value of which is equal to or in excess of €11,647 or equivalent is obliged to fill in the appropriate declaration form available from the Customs.

Post Offices 

Post Office branches are also found in most towns or cities in Malta.  

Pharmacies 

Pharmacies are found throughout the Islands and are open during normal shopping hours.  On Sundays, chemists open on a roster from 09.00 until 12.30 in Malta and from 07.30 until 11.00 in Gozo. To view the pharmacy roster visit:

http://www.ehealth.gov.mt/public/roster.aspx

Water

 Tap water is safe to drink throughout the Maltese Islands. Local and imported bottled mineral water is also available.

Electricity 

The electrical supply is 230 volts +/- 10%.  The frequency of the supply is 50 hertz. The three-pin rectangular plug system is used, as in Britain. Adapters are very easy to find.

Shopping

In the Maltese Islands, one can find all sorts of shops, ranging from basic necessity shops, supermarkets, DIY shops, bargain shops to exclusive brand shops. The main shopping areas in Malta are Sliema, and Valletta however almost every town and village is equipped with a good number of shops.

Restaurants

A variety of restaurants featuring local or international cuisine can be found varying from American, Italian, Oriental, Indian, French, Greek, Turkish to mention a few. One should have no difficulty in finding a restaurant to suit his/her taste and budget. Sliema, St.Julian’s Valletta and Bugibba are amongst the main areas where one is spoilt for choice when it comes to finding a restaurant. However good restaurants are found in every town or village.

For a good restaurant guide visit:  http://www.restaurantsmalta.com/

Health Insurance

It is recommended that foreigners would arrange for their own insurance especially since health services are against payment unless the participant is a holder of the E111 document.