If you are like us, you may have a spouse who is not from Europe and want to bring them with you to Malta. Malta in general is pretty closed off with it’s visas and employment market, as they always want to protect their own citizens. Many of them remember when job preference was given to English people, rather than the native Malti people. So, because of this it can be difficult to get visas in general… Unless you’re the spouse of an EU national.
If you are the spouse of an EU national, you are able to apply for a Schengen visa as the family member of an EU national, this is also known as a C visa.
“C” category stands for a Short-term visa which allows its holder to reside in a Schengen Country for a certain period of time depending on the visa validity. This particular category, according to the holder’s purpose of the travel can be obtained in a form of a multiple entry visa that allows its holder to go in and out of the Schengen country (in this case Malta) as they please. These visas are only valid for 90 days, so during the 90 days you must apply for your residence card, which has a duration of 5 years from issuance. There will be a further post in regards to the residence card in this blog.
You will need to apply for the C visa from outside of Malta if you are a visa required national, this can be done by going to any Schengen country’s consulate in your own country, though obviously choose your host country’s if you can find one in your country. These visas are free for people who are the family member of an EU national, so if you are asked to pay a fee, please refer to the Freedom of Movement directive, as there is no charge. These visas must be issued quickly, 15 days is the average and anything longer is considered to be in breach of the directive.
You will need to provide:
Itinerary (flight and hotel/accomodation, though these can be tentative)
You may be asked to provide an invitation letter from your family member
Proof of relationship to the EU national
If you happen to be from a non-visa national country (list below of visa required countries), you can apply at port for a tourist visa with the presentation of proof of your relationship to the EU national. In the case of spouses, this would be a valid marriage certificate. If you are a child, a birth certificate would suffice, same with dependent relatives like mothers, fathers, etc. This can be done by stating that you are moving to Malta to live and work under the Freedom of Movement Directive.
List of Visa National Countries:
Central African Republic
People’s Republic of China
Democratic Republic of the Congo
Sao Tome e Principe
United Arab Emirates
Jenni and I have been having a great time sampling the different restaurants around St Julians, and one of the first we visited was the Blackbull Pub in Paceville. It is literally steps from our hotel and has this huge covered, but open and filled with warming lamps. The place has recently been refurbished outside, so there is a lovely look to the exterior of the building. It’s all dark wood, padded seats and quite comfortable. There is a really lovely vibe here when it’s filled up in the evenings. The only real downside to the location though, is that due to the open patio and leading with no barriers into the main restaurant, if you’re a non smoker there is literally no way to get away from the smell.
So what about the food? The food is good, we had no real complaints about it. It wasn’t the best we ever had but it was brought out quickly, it was clearly freshly made and the plates/cutlery were very clean and well polished. The salad (and we found this in most restaurants in Malta, so it may be customary there) was more cheese and dressing than it was lettuce/toppings, which was a bit of a let down. But the chicken was really very well seasoned and cooked, and generous amount on the salad.
I had a chicken lasagna, which was great and a massive portion. We had enough to bring home for a second portion the next day at lunch. The let down for me was the drinks. We ordered cocktails, and they looked beautiful but were much stronger than they should be. But as far as downsides go it’s not a big one!
Overall, good night. Would go again.
When we first ventured into Spinola Bay area we weren’t really sure what to look at, there are a lot of restaurants and bars. So where do you start? Ryan’s seemed intriguing since it’s at the top of the hill. Since it’s slightly set apart, when we went up there to look around we weren’t expecting it to be as busy as it was. Every time we go by there it’s busy and filled with lots of people having a good time. Normally we don’t like packed places, but it looked fun, so we went in.
There were people playing music (quite good though I didn’t catch the name) and people dancing. The place was so packed that you could barely move and as the evening went on it got busier, to the point it was overflowing on to the street. We absolutely loved the fact that it was a great mix of locals and tourists. The drinks were affordable and people kept telling us about the burgers. It was late and the kitchen had already closed so we would have to go back another time.
The night I am talking about was actually St Patrick’s Day and the celebrations were out of the world. I’ve never seen a pub spill out onto the street, down a hill and onto a main road before and still not turn into something ridiculous. But this did, and everyone was having such an amazing time. The staff were lovely and introduced us to Cisk for the first time. Cisk is the local beer and if you order a beer without specifying in Malta, this is what you’re getting. Given that we were feeling a little home sick, missing the celebrations we normally have with friends on this day, going to a large gathering where even if you didn’t know people they were friendly and having fun, really was a fantastic night in Malta.
So in short, if you’re looking for an amazing crowd, vibe, photos of your night, and some good dancing/partying, check out Ryan’s it’s awesome.
We came back on another occasion to try the burgers we kept hearing about from locals and they really are amazing. So when in Malta, go to Ryan’s, order a burger and have a pint of Cisk, you won’t regret it.
One great thing about Malta, especially if you’re on holiday and do not want to shell out on the service which is shoddy at best from Ozone, is the large amount of Wi-Fi hot spots available all over the island as well as Gozo. There is even a body in Malta that handles this called the Malta Communications Authority, or MCA. So if you are coming to Malta, I’d say step one is find yourself a phone (presumably in your pocket, that’s where most people keep them) and download the app here so that you can find the hotspots easier.
So, as mentioned in previous posts, a lot of the hotels that you will visit in Malta do not have free wi-fi. If you’re there on vacation and need to look through your emails, but don’t want to shell out we’re hoping to help you. The below is a list that will help you find some hotspots, though it is not entirely exhaustive.
McDonalds – Every one on the island has free wifi, many have outdoor seating so you may not even have to shell out to use it
This list is borrowed from visitmalta, who update frequently, though does have a few of our own.
We’ve had a bit of a fun day wandering around Valetta to get our residence card applications in today, but managed it on our first try, which almost didn’t happen! We read a lot of online guides before going and were told to arrive early (like when the doors open), and bring the filled in paperwork with us, but that we could get our photos taken on site. The thing I would like to advise is that they do not take photos anymore on site, so you need to bring your own. If you don’t they can’t take the application as everything needs to be there in a single go.
The card is actually very easy to apply for, so don’t stress yourself out about the application process, and depending on the time of year can be issued quickly. We’ve been told ours will only take two weeks because it’s still winter. We were surprised! Thought it would be months.
There are two offices from which you can apply for the residence card, one is in Rabat on Gozo and the other is in Valetta. The Valetta office is the one we used and is down by St Elmo’s Fort, in the Evan’s building. It is a building with a green wooden door, large parking lot (for Malta) and signs once you get down towards the fort. Ask any local and they’ll be able to assist if you can’t find the way. Once you get to the building you will need to go to the lower floor of the building where you’ll see a desk and a security guard in military gear. He will tell you where to go. If it hasn’t changed in the time since I wrote this until you are reading this, the room he sends you to is immediately to the left behind two double doors. Make sure you are there half an hour before the close time, as they stop accepting people then. When you go in the door, make sure that you grab a number from the red ticket machine otherwise you won’t be seen to. We almost missed this and almost missed being seen.
You will need to bring the following items with you when applying:
Forms filled out:
For those looking to submit your documentation, you can only do so during select hours to the Evan’s Building in Valetta. The hours are copied below from the Malta Government website:
“The collection of residence documentation is to be submitted from the same place on the following days:
Between 1 October – 15 June: Monday – Friday from 08:00hrs – 12:00hrs, and from 13:15hrs – 14:30hrs;
Between 16 June – 30 September: Monday-Friday from 08:00hrs-12:00hrs.”
If you need any more information, please use the following link or call them on their phone number: (356) 2590 4000