Practical Life in Valletta


Transport in Valletta


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Public Transportation

The public transportation system in Malta includes bus services in Malta and Gozo, operated by Arriva. The main bus terminal in Malta is located in Valletta, with other major terminals at Mater Dei hospital, the Msida University of Malta campus, the Malta International Airport, Sliema Ferries, Pembroke Park and Ride, and Cirkewwa Gozo Ferry Terminal.

Tickets

You can purchase bus tickets online on Arriva's web site,  at kiosks at major terminals, or on the bus from the bus driver (change is provided). Fares range from €1.20-€2.20/2 hours or €1.50-€2.60/day, depending on your residency status (lower fares are available to residents of the Maltese islands). Weeklong tickets are also available, as are ‘Saver Cards' which offer discounted fares. Discounted fares are also available to students and seniors.

Bus: http://arriva.com.mt/tickets-and-fares

Ferry/Boat

There is a ferry between Sliema and Valletta, operated by the Marsamxetto Ferry Services Ltd. Schedules vary by season, with more frequent crossings in the summer. The ferry docks at Sliema Ferries and on the northwest shore of Valletta. Fares are €1.50 for a single journey, and €2.80 return. Frequent traveller cards are available for commuters.

A ferry is also available from the Marsamxetto Ferry Services Ltd. from Bormla to Valletta, at the same fees listed above. Ferry schedules can be found here.

There is a ferry link between the islands of Malta and Gozo, operated by the Gozo Channel Company. Crossings are offered every 40 minutes, and cost less than €5 per person. The crossing between Malta and Gozo lasts 20 minutes. The Gozo ferry terminal is located in Cirkewwa, and is easily accessible by bus. Gozo ferry schedules can be found on the Gozo Channel web site.

There is also a ferry link between Malta and Sicily, operated by Virtu Ferries. Fares and schedules vary by season.

Plane

There is one airport in Malta: The Malta International Airport (MIA) located in Luqa, Malta. The airport code is MLA.

Airlines servicing Malta include:

  • Air Malta
  • Ryanair
  • Easyjet
  • Lufthansa
  • Turkish Airlines
  • Emirates
  • Air Berlin
  • Air Baltic
  • Air France
  • Alitalia
  • Egypt Air
  • Jat Airways
  • Libyan Airlines
  • Jettime
  • Luxair
  • Monarch
  • Norwegian
  • SAS
  • Thomas Cook
  • Thomson
  • Transavia
  • Tunisair
  • Vueling
  • Wizz

Transport to/from Airport
Shuttle: Private shuttles are available to/from the airport, and can be arranged in advance of your arrival through your hotel or Malta Transfer.
Bus: A list of buses servicing the airport can be found on the public transport provider (Arriva) web site. Bus fares are as little as €2.20 per person per trip. There are luggage storage areas on most buses that service the airport. Buses can sometimes be late or not show up, so give yourself at least 1.5 hours when taking the bus to the airport in Malta.
Drive: The airport is located in Luqa, and is easily accessible by car. Parking is available at the airport at a minimal fee.
Taxi: White taxi service is available at the airport 24 hours a day to any destination in Malta at a cost of €11-€25. To hire a white taxi from the airport, pre-pay your fare at the ticket booth inside the Welcomer's Hall in Arrivals. Coloured/black private taxis must be booked in advance. Their airport rates range from €15-€30.

Taxi

There are two types of taxis in Malta: white taxis and coloured taxis.

White taxis can be found at taxi stands or bays around Malta and Gozo, and at the Malta International Airport, the Malta Cruise Port, Valletta, and Bugibba. They can also cruise and pick up passengers from anywhere on the islands, except at bus stops.

Coloured cabs (mostly black, some yellow) are not permitted to cruise for fares. They are owned by private garages with fleets, and must be booked in advance.

Taxis in Malta are generally reliable, especially if booked in advance, and coloured taxis are usually very punctual. Most taxis carry a maximum of four passengers and a trunk/boot full of luggage. For groups with more than four people, book ahead for a mini-bus or mini-van.

Taxi Companies
Private taxi companies in Malta include:

  • eCabs - Tel. 2138 38 38, SMS 7976 4976
  • Dialacab - Tel. 23456789
  • Wembleys - Tel. 356 2137 4141, 2737 4141
  • Prestige cabs Tel. 356 9999 9616

Fares & Tipping

White and coloured taxis in Malta charge based on a zoning or distance system. Rates depend on the number of passengers and distance travelled.

Coloured taxi rates within a zone cost as little as €8, and €15-28 between zones. White taxi rates vary between €9 and €31, depending on distance travelled.

Tips are not required, but are appreciated for good and prompt service. Normally you round up to the nearest five or ten (e.g. for a €18 fare, round up to €20).

Car Hire

To hire (rent) a car in Malta you must have a valid driver's license (this does not have to be an EU or International Driver's License), passport, and credit card in your own name. Be aware that cars drive on the left side of the road in Malta, and most cars are manual transmission.

Insurance is purchased through the car hire company. You must be 21 to hire a vehicle in Malta. If you are under 25, check with a car hire company as to their specific under-age policies, as additional costs or restrictions may apply.

There are numerous car hire companies in Malta, including internationally known names as well as smaller, locally owned garages. Car hire fees range from €20-€50 per day, depending on locality and seasonality. Contact several companies to get the best rate.

Scooters and motorcycles are available to hire in Malta from €15-€30/day. Many scooter and motorcycle rental companies require an insurance deposit up front of €150-€200. Car, scooter, and motorcycle hire rates are generally cheaper in Gozo than in Malta. Be aware that driving in Malta can be congested and hectic, and scooters and motorcycles are allowed to weave through traffic.

Update 25/05/2013


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