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8 Things No One Mentioned Before You Moved To Malta

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We can say (with nauseating confidence) that your decision to relocate to Malta is the right one. Malta’s an awesome place to call home, for reasons that are too copious to list (although we have done it anyway). 

But there are more tough things to do than picking the right flip-flops and finding the perfect time for a siesta. And if you are thinking, with probably not so subtle smugness, that you are practically a local then think on, we like to keep you on your toes.

1. Do you even bureaucracy bro? 

Sorry to break it to you, but if you’re staying in Malta for longer than three months, you’ll need to apply for a Maltese residence permit. And if you’re looking to get a permit, be ready for an endless amount of back and forth between you and 15 governmental departments. Take every document you have ever owned, the fun is in guessing what you might need despite us never having mentioned it before. Welcome to the Mediterranean.

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2. Prepare a ħobża for when you’re visiting the bank

There’s a few banks to choose from in Malta but don’t take too long deciding as these valuable minutes will be needed for those seemingly endless queues you will find yourself in. Just be aware that we are Mediterranean and queuing isn’t our strong suit, our only saving grace is what we lack in patience we make up for with 9 months of sun. 

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3. Bad news, you have to pay taxes here too

Despite the rumours that all islands are tax havens, if you’re living in Malta you’re obliged to register for tax here, file tax returns and pay tax if applicable. Thankfully we have a lot of great bars to help quell any post-tax nausea you may be experiencing.

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4. You can literally make your car’s number-plate BUM 001

Good news, if your little Vitz from back home has been in your name for more than two years then you can bring it to Malta avoiding the costly registration tax. Then your next biggest challenge is coming up with something creative for those three letters and three numbers for your plate, oh yeah and realising that driving here is more of an interpretive art rather than a science as these hacks suggest.


5. The paperwork party doesn’t stop with your taxes 

If you are working in Malta, you’ll need to apply for a social security number. Yay, that good old bureaucracy is back. Time to crack open another Cisk and settle in for a long one.

Still, it’s actually not so scary, and together with your tax registration it’s going to ensure you’ll be reaping all the sweet, sweet state benefits. You.Are.Welcome!

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6. But at least your ass will literally be covered

Malta has a public healthcare system which is open to anyone who lives here and pays their taxes and social security. No matter what trouble you manage to get yourself into, you’ll be covered… at least health-wise. And guess what, spoiler alert, there are probably going to be some more of those delightful queues, but this time with seating!

You should apply for your European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) if you’re just visiting, but once you’re a resident, then you’ll have access to public healthcare.

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7. And on a slightly less cheery note…

It’s always good to be prepared; if you are planning to stick it out in Malta then it’s a good idea to have a Maltese will. There are EU rules in place to ease cross border succession issues – so it should be as smooth sailing as possible. 

Done! Here are some fancy keywords to bring back the joy of moving here: SUN, SEA, PARTIES, FOOD AND FESTAS.

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8. We really are over-friendly

For better or worse, the Maltese are always eager to help… even if you don’t need it. You may think it’s nosy (and it probably is) but for the most part you’re basically family now and with that comes your own Nanna, pastizzi on tap and the inability to put the phone down until you have said ‘bye’ at least five times. Now, all thats left is to go and enjoy some of that well earned beach time but take your factor 30 (see point 6, it may be available but doesn’t mean we have to use it).

Ciao, ciao, ciao, bye, bye, ciao.


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