Moving to Malta in 2024: Everything You Need to Know

A beautiful island nation dropped into the heart of the Mediterranean? Yes, please. It’s easy to see why people want to move to Malta. Its unique blend of history, vibrant culture, and jaw-dropping landscapes promises an idyllic lifestyle that continues to draw foreign expats in their thousands.

An English-speaking environment, booming job market, and friendly locals only add to its appeal. That’s why we at Remitly have gathered all you need to know about relocating to Malta in 2024.

According to 2023 figures, over 130,000 foreign nationals currently call Malta home. If you think you might like to join them, then you’re definitely in the right place.

Malta at a glance

  • Geography: Malta is an archipelago in the central Mediterranean Sea, located south of Italy and north of Libya. At 316 km², it’s the world’s tenth-smallest country by area and the fifth most densely populated sovereign state.
  • Capital: Valletta, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site
  • Population: Approximately 514,000 people in 2024
  • Language: Maltese and English are both official languages
  • Economy: Malta boasts a diverse economy, with key industries including tourism, financial services, shipping, iGaming, and information technology.

Can US citizens move to Malta?

Just like all third-country nationals, US citizens can move to Malta as long as they meet the visa requirements and file a successful residency application.

There is a thriving multinational community on the island, increasingly driven by its popularity as a business destination. The global job market brings workers from various countries to its shores.

Visas and residence permits

Non-EU citizens

Citizens of countries outside the European Union require a visa to enter Malta. The application process can take several routes, but all involve obtaining a work permit or showing proof of sufficient financial means.

The most common work visa for third-country nationals is the Single Permit (D Visa), which entitles you to work and reside in Malta. To apply, you must have a job offer based in the country and meet a selection of other eligibility criteria—to find out more, check out our guide to getting a work permit in Malta.

Alternatively, remote workers can apply for the recently launched Malta Nomad Residence Permit. This is the Maltese government’s response to the boom in digital nomad culture since the COVID-19 pandemic and offers a series of benefits to its holders.

Citizenship by investment

The citizenship-by-investment scheme applies to any foreign nationals who are willing and able to make a significant financial contribution to the country.

Investment in Malta can include contributions to the national development fund, purchasing high-end real estate, or investing in government bonds. The program offers a fast-track route to obtaining Maltese citizenship, regardless of where you’re from.

EU nationals

Meanwhile, Malta’s status as a European Union Member means citizens of EEA states and Switzerland may move to Malta without a visa.

If you fancy making the jump to Malta from Europe, simply apply for a residence permit within three months of arriving on the island. It’s a straightforward application process that involves registering with the Department for Citizenship and Expatriate Affairs.

Working in Malta

Having a job offer from a Maltese company is a crucial part of any visa application for non-EU citizens. Luckily for people looking to move, Malta’s job market is thriving.

It’s an international hub for the iGaming industry, while sectors like finance, tourism, and IT are all growing on the island, providing jobs for expat professionals.

Something to note is that employers must be able to show that any job offers made to foreign nationals cannot be filled by a Maltese or EU citizen.

Malta also offers competitive tax rates for both individuals and businesses. If you’re working for a company based in Malta, there is a progressive income tax system ranging from 15% to 35% depending on income level.

There are also several tax incentives and benefits for expatriates, including favorable treatment for foreign income. Plus, one of the greatest benefits of the Nomad Residence Permit is the flat 10% income tax rate.

Where to live as an expat in Malta


The Maltese capital, Valletta, is a UNESCO World Heritage site known for its historical significance and vibrant cultural scene.

It offers a unique blend of historic architecture, cultural events, and modern amenities.

Few places are better than Valletta for lovers of museums, theaters, and galleries—and it’s also home to world-class restaurants and leisure options.

As with any capital city, accommodation prices are the highest on the island.


Sliema is one of Malta’s most popular residential areas, especially among the foreign population. It boasts a beautiful seafront promenade, excellent shopping facilities, and a host of dining and entertainment options.

It’s ideal for those looking for a lively atmosphere and modern amenities, plus it has loads of high-rise apartments with stunning sea views. The catch? A pretty competitive real estate market.

St. Julian’s

St. Julian’s sits right next to Sliema and is famous for its vibrant nightlife, luxury hotels, and entertainment venues.

Paceville is the island’s clubbing hot spot, popular with young professionals and expats chasing an active social life. The quieter residential areas comprise a mix of apartments and houses.


At the other end of the spectrum is Gozo. Malta’s sister island offers a more laid-back, rural pace of life and is ideal for anyone looking to escape the urban environment.

Gozo is set in beautiful countryside, with quiet communities dotting its hillsides.

Rental and real estate prices are generally lower than in Malta itself, and many people commute daily. There are definitely worse ways to get to work than a scenic half-hour ferry ride across the Med!


Known as the “Silent City,” Mdina is the ancient capital of Malta. Its medieval architecture, narrow streets, and fairytale-like atmosphere make for a truly unique place to live.

How does the cost of living in Malta compare to the US?

The cost of living in Malta can vary quite a lot depending on where on the island you’re based. According to many comparison sites, the cost of living in Malta is about 30% higher than in the United States.

Of course, your expenses will definitely be highest in the capital city, Valletta, while other popular areas like Sliema and St. Julian’s are pretty pricey, too. Ultimately, though, the cost of living in Malta is like other European Union countries—‌ a nice spot on the island won’t be dramatically different from the US in terms of average prices.

Expense Details Cost
Housing Rent for a two-bedroom apartment in central Valletta, Sliema, and St. Julian’s €1,500 per month
Housing Budget-friendly options in Gozo or Gzira Lower than Valletta, Sliema, and St. Julian’s
Bills Monthly bills for an average apartment (electricity, heating, water, internet) €100 – €150
Groceries Monthly supermarket bills (similar to other European countries) €300 – €400
Eating out Meal for one at a cheap restaurant €15
Eating out High-end dining experience per person €60+

What should I know before relocating to Malta?

Any international move is a big deal. Before taking the leap, make sure you have a clear idea of what to expect from living in a foreign country.

With that in mind, here’s an overview of key aspects of daily life in Malta.


Malta has a high-quality public healthcare system considered one of the best in Europe.  It’s funded by taxes and provides services at no cost to residents. European Union nationals in Malta can make use of the public health services for free, provided they present a valid European Health Insurance card (EHIC).

However, non-EEA nationals must have a health insurance policy in order to apply for residency and work permits. Private health insurance plans in Malta vary in coverage and cost, so make sure you choose a plan that fits your needs and budget.


Malta has a solid public transport system made up mainly of bus routes. It also has ferry services connecting the main islands. Tickets are generally affordable and can be purchased on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis.

Being such a small island, cycling and walking are common in Malta and are often the best options for moving short distances.


Opening a bank account as a foreign citizen in Malta is pretty straightforward. Most banks require proof of identity, residence, and employment.

We would recommend comparing banks to find the best services to suit your individual situation, but some of the top options for expats on the island are:

  • Bank of Valletta
  • HSBC Malta
  • APS Bank
  • Sparkasse Bank


Malta offers a high standard of education on an international scale. The education system follows the British model and most programs are taught in English.

There are also several international schools on the island that cater to expatriate families, offering study plans from the UK, US, and other European countries in several languages.

Crime rates

Malta has one of the lowest crime rates in Europe. The country’s small size and strong communities help make it a very safe place to live and work.


St. Julian’s and Sliema are the island’s nightlife hubs. Fantastic dining and entertainment options bring both locals and foreigners in their droves.

The Mediterranean climate and over 300 days of sunshine a year contribute to the wonderful outdoor lifestyle. You’ll fit right in if you love sailing, diving, hiking, or just soaking up the rays on the beautiful beaches.


Malta’s capital city, Valletta, is a UNESCO World Heritage site. As the hub of the country’s cultural scene, it’s packed with loads of museums, theaters, restaurants, and leisure options.

Of the many festivals and events held in the city throughout the year, our top pick is the Notte Bianca. Held on the first Saturday of October, Valletta’s streets, squares, and museums come to life with incredible live performances and concerts that run late into the night. It is a truly unique experience, not to be missed.

We hope this guide has helped you learn more about living and working in Malta. For more information on the legal requirements and paperwork, check out this official government guide.


Can US citizens move to Malta?

Of course—all third-country nationals (non-EU citizens) can move to live and work in Malta provided they meet the visa requirements.

Is it worth it to move to Malta?

We definitely think so. The beautiful beaches, historic landmarks and low crime rates make it a fantastic place to live—and the strong job market makes it an attractive destination for work and business, too.

What are the requirements for a work visa in Malta?

This depends on what type of visa you apply for, but generally, you’ll need a job offer, a clean criminal record, health insurance, and proof that you can support yourself financially.

Can EU & EEA nationals seek permanent residence status in Malta?

Yes, all EU & EEA citizens who have been legally residing in Malta uninterrupted for five years in a row can apply for permanent residence status.

Where is the best place to live as an expat in Malta?

It depends on what you’re looking for. Check out our section on different areas of the island above for more info, but it’s pretty hard to top Valletta.

How does the cost of living in Malta compare to the US?

This is a tough one to answer as it completely depends on your lifestyle and where you choose to live. As a general rule, a family of four can live on around €4,000 per month, while the average monthly expenses for a single person might be about €2,200.