If you are planning to travel to Malta, please note that the country will undergo a major change in its visa system in 2021. Travelers from more than 60 countries will need to apply for an ETIAS visa waiver (also known as The European Travel Information and Authorization System), which is used to better secure the borders of the European Union.
Thankfully, the process is quick and simple: it takes less than 20 minutes, and the ETIAS waiver lasts for three years. Travelers can use their ETIAS visa waiver to travel to other countries within the European Union without having to apply for another visa.
Malta, the EU, and the Schengen Area
Malta has been a member of the European Union since May 1, 2004, and a Schengen Area member since December 21, 2007. Malta is one of the smallest countries in the European Union, with less than half a million people living in the country.
In fact, Malta was once part of mainland Europe. Around 17,000 years ago, the current islands of Malta were the mountain tops of one landmass near Sicily and mainland Italy.
Who Needs ETIAS to Travel to Malta?
Citizens of more than 60 countries will need to apply for the maltese ETIAS if they plan to visit Malta (or other countries within the Schengen Zone).
These include countries from all around the world, and include the United States of America, Canada, Mexico, Peru, Chile, Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Israel, South Korea, the United Arab Emirates, Taiwan, the United Kingdom, and Venezuela.
It is recommendable to double-check the full list of countries that need an ETIAS waiver before planning your trip to Malta and/or Europe.
Passport and Document Requirements for Malta ETIAS
The ETIAS requirements for Malta are very simple and straightforward. There are only a handful of things that you need in order to apply for the Maltese ETIAS.
First and foremost, you must have a current passport with at least three months of validity from the time that you enter Malta (or any other Schengen country).
You will also need a valid credit card or debit card in order to pay the ETIAS fee, and a valid email address in order to receive the confirmation email once your ETIAS has been approved.
How Can I Apply for Maltese ETIAS?
The ETIAS visa waiver for Malta can be obtained by filling out an online application. It takes less than 20 minutes to apply, and the ETIAS waiver is valid for three years (or until your passport expires).
The ETIAS application online will ask for the traveler’s personal information (such as their full name, date of birth, gender, and place of birth), their contact details (email, phone number, and address), passport details, and their travel itinerary. Travelers will also have to fill out a brief questionnaire that pertains to their criminal activity and health information.
Travel Information about Malta
Most travelers arrive in the capital of Malta, Valletta, which is coincidentally also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Some of the top attractions include the gorgeous Casa Rocca Piccola villa, a walk along the Valletta Waterfront, or a cruise along the Grand Harbor.
You can catch a 20-minute ferry from the northern tip of Malta and visit the neighboring island of Gozo (there are 21 islands in total). It is the perfect place to escape from the busy hustle and bustle of Valletta; there are plenty of spots for snorkeling, scuba diving, and hiking. Malta has some of Europe’s clearest waters, perfect for water sports. Some of the main attractions on Gozo include the Blue Lagoon, the Azure Window, and the Ġgantija Temples.
Movie buffs will especially be drawn to Malta, as it is a popular filming location. Titles such as Gladiator, World War Z, and Game of Thrones were filmed here.
If you have an ETIAS for Malta, you will be able to travel onward to other European Union countries in the Schengen Zone without re-applying for another ETIAS. The closest countries include Italy, Croatia, and Greece.