U.S. Department of State
Bureau of Consular Affairs
Washington, DC 20520
Consular Information Sheet
This information is current as of today,
February 03, 2006
COUNTRY DESCRIPTION: Malta is a small, developed, democratic Mediterranean island nation, positioned as a cultural stepping-stone between Europe and North Africa. Malta became a member of the European Union with nine other new member states on May 1, 2004. Tourist facilities of all categories are widely available. Read the Department of State Background Notes on Malta for additional information.
ENTRY/EXIT REQUIREMENTS: A valid passport is required. A visa is not required for U.S. citizens for stays up to 90 days. For the most current information concerning entry requirements for Malta, travelers should contact the Embassy of Malta at 2017 Connecticut Avenue, N.W., Washington D.C. 20008, tel: (202) 462-3611, website: http://foreign.gov.mt.ORG/ministry/missions/washington2.htm, or the Maltese Consulate in New York city, tel: (212) 725-2345.
Find more information about Entry and Exit Requirements pertaining to dual nationality and the prevention of international child abduction. Please refer to our Customs Information to learn more about customs regulations.
SAFETY AND SECURITY: No indigenous terrorist or extremist groups are known to be active in Malta, and no foreign terrorist organization has carried out an attack against U.S. interests in Malta in recent years.
For the latest security information, Americans traveling abroad should regularly monitor the Department’s Internet web site, where the current Worldwide Caution Public Announcement, Travel Warnings and Public Announcements can be found.
Up-to-date information on safety and security can also be obtained by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll free in the U.S., or for callers outside the U.S. and Canada, a regular toll-line at 1-202-501-4444. These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).
The Department of State urges American citizens to take responsibility for their own personal security while traveling overseas. For general information about appropriate measures travelers can take to protect themselves in an overseas environment, see the Department of State’s pamphlet A Safe Trip Abroad
CRIME: Malta has a low rate of violent crime. Property crime is also relatively low but on the rise in recent years. Theft of unattended personal property and car stereos from vehicles is a common problem. Visitors are strongly encouraged to secure their valuables, and be aware of pickpockets and purse snatches. Such criminals focus on areas and establishments frequented by tourist. Caution is particularly urged in the Paceville nightclub area, where excessive drinking and poor crowd control have led to instances of violent behavior. Poverty, homelessness and panhandling are almost non-existent in Malta. All visitors to Malta should practice the same good, common sense personal security practices that are part of everyday life in urban areas within the U.S., particularly when spending time in areas frequented by tourists.
INFORMATION FOR VICTIMS OF CRIME: The loss or theft abroad of a U.S. passport should be reported immediately to the local police and the nearest U.S. Embassy
or Consulate. If you are the victim of a crime while overseas, in addition to reporting to local police, please contact the
nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate for assistance. The Embassy/Consulate staff can, for example, assist you to find appropriate
medical care, contact family members or friends and explain how funds could be transferred. Although the investigation and
prosecution of the crime is solely the responsibility of local authorities, consular officers can help you to understand the
local criminal justice process and to find an attorney if needed. The crime victims assistance agency is ‘APPOGG’- Support
Line, tel: 179;
Website: www.appogg.gov.mt. Police Emergency Number: tel: 191; Ambulance: tel: 196; Fire Brigade: tel 199.
See our information on Victims of Crime
MEDICAL FACILITIES AND HEALTH INFORMATION: Medical care is available through public and private hospitals. The quality of medical care in Malta is excellent. Private hospitals generally offer a higher standard of service than the public hospitals, and the majority of the best doctors practice in private medical facilities.
Information on vaccinations and other health precautions, such as safe food and water precautions and insect bite protection, may be obtained from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s hotline for international travelers at 1-877-FYI-TRIP (1-877-394-8747) or via the CDC’s internet site at http://www.cdc.gov/travel. For information about outbreaks of infectious diseases abroad consult the World Health Organization’s (WHO) website at http://www.who.int/en. Further health information for travelers is available at http://www.who.int/ith .
MEDICAL INSURANCE: The Department of State strongly urges Americans to consult with their medical insurance company prior to traveling abroad to confirm whether their policy applies overseas and whether it will cover emergency expenses such as a medical evacuation. Please see our information on medical insurance overseas .
TRAFFIC SAFETY AND ROAD CONDITIONS: While in a foreign country, U.S. citizens may encounter road conditions that differ significantly from those in the United States. The information below concerning Malta is provided for general reference only, and may not be totally accurate in a particular location or circumstance.
Traffic in Malta flows on the left, requiring attentiveness and caution from visitors from right-hand drive countries such as the United States. In addition, drivers may be erratic or undisciplined. Roads flood easily, and are often narrow, winding, and congested, with poor visibility around curves. Traffic arteries are prone to bottlenecks and accidents. Buses are the primary means of public transportation. Though the bus fleet is being modernized, most busses are old, cramped, and not air-conditioned. Taxis are safe but expensive and are not metered; it is a good practice to agree with the driver in advance on the charge.
Please refer to our Road Safety page for more information. There is a Malta Tourist Office Information located at Freedom Square Valletta, Tel. No. 21-237-747, website: www.mta.co.mt. Road safety information can be obtain through the Ministry for Urban Development & Roads, website, www.mudr.gov.mt
AVIATION SAFETY OVERSIGHT: The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has assessed the Government of Malta as being in compliance with ICAO international aviation safety standards for oversight of Malta’s air carrier operations. For more information, travelers may visit the FAA’s Internet web site at http://www.faa.gov/safety/programs_initiatives/oversight/iasa.
SPECIAL CIRCUMSTANCES: Malta customs authorities may enforce strict regulations concerning currency restrictions and temporary importation into or export from Malta of items such as firearms, antiquities, and any item that might be deemed to have resalable value. It is advisable to contact the Embassy of Malta in Washington or the Consulate of Malta in New York City for specific information regarding customs requirements. Malta’s customs authorities encourage the use of an ATA (Admission Temporaire/Temporay Admission) Carnet for the temporary admission of professional equipment, commercial samples, and/or goods for exhibitions and fair purposes. ATA Carnet Headquarters located at U.S. Council for International Business, 1212 Avenue of the Americas, New York, N.Y. 10036, issues and guarantees the ATA Carnet in the United States. For additional information call (212) 354-4480, send an e-mail to [email protected] or visit http://uscib.org for details.
Please see our information on Customs Information.
CRIMINAL PENALTIES: While in a foreign country, a U.S. citizen is subject to that country's laws and regulations, which sometimes differ significantly from those in the United States and may not afford the protections available to the individual under U.S. law. Penalties for breaking the law can be more severe than in the United States for similar offenses. Persons violating Malta’s, even unknowingly, may be expelled, arrested or imprisoned. Penalties for possession, use, or trafficking in illegal drugs in Malta are severe, and convicted offenders can expect long jail sentences and heavy fines. Engaging in sexual conduct with children or using or disseminating child pornography in a foreign country is a crime, prosecutable in the United States. Please see our information on Criminal Penalties.
CHILDREN'S ISSUES: For information on international adoption of children and international parental child abduction, see the Office of Children’s Issues website.
REGISTRATION / EMBASSY LOCATION: Americans living or traveling in Malta are encouraged to register with the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate through the State Department’s travel registration website and to obtain updated information on travel and security within Malta. Americans without Internet access may register directly with the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate. By registering, American citizens make it easier for the Embassy or Consulate to contact them in case of emergency.
The U.S. Embassy is on the third floor of the Development House, St. Anne Street, Floriana, Valletta, telephone (356) 2561-4000.
The Consular Section’s telephone number is (356) 2156-4115, fax: (356) 2124-3229, website: http://valletta.usembassy.gov/. The Consular Section is open to the public Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.
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This replaces the Consular Information Sheet dated June 29, 2005, to update sections on Entry Requirements, Information for
Victims of Crime, Medical Facilities and Traffic and Safety and Road Conditions.