Renting a Car in Malta, Everything You Need to Know


Renting a car in Malta is a great way to explore the Mediterranean island and its 316 square kilometers. Before making this decision, make sure to check our tips and recommendations to avoid any inconvenience.

Planning a trip to Malta

Why Rent a Car in Malta?

The public transport network in the Maltese archipelago is quite comprehensive and efficient. Buses are frequent and serve every corner of the island. Additionally, many taxis are available through mobile applications. So, why consider renting a car in Malta?

The first obvious reason is the freedom it offers. Having your own means of transportation allows you to plan your schedule as you wish and explore the island without depending on others or bus schedules.

The second advantage is the ease of getting around the island. Some places on the island, such as the Dingli Cliffs, certain Maltese beaches like Gnejna Bay, or the Ġgantija and Ħaġar Qim megalithic temples, are difficult to reach by public transport. You would need multiple bus changes and a lot of time to cover short distances. In these cases, using a car is often the best option, if not the only one.

Finally, in terms of comfort, the bus network in Malta is often very crowded and does not always guarantee punctuality, especially during peak hours and the high summer tourist season. Buses are often overcrowded, and drivers sometimes refuse passengers, which could force you to wait for the next bus. On the other hand, while taxi or rideshare services (e.g., Uber, Bolt, eCabs) offer a comfortable solution, frequent trips could turn out to be very expensive.

Car Rental Options in Malta

Renting a car is a comfortable way to explore the island during your stay in Malta. There are two options available for renting a vehicle in Malta.

Online Car Rental

Booking a rental car in advance online is the safest way to ensure you get a vehicle. The most convenient way is simply to use the Rentalcars Platform to book a car. Additionally, you’ll be able to get the latest car rental deals in Malta.

The platform is easy to use and offers the best prices for vehicle rental. This allows you to easily compare prices, different car options, and make early bookings with multiple rental companies in Malta at a glance.

Rental at Malta Airport

It’s also possible to rent a car directly upon your arrival at Malta Airport (Luqa Airport).

To collect the keys, you need to go to the vehicle rental offices on level 1 (ground floor) of Park East. This building is located a 3-minute walk from the main terminal; simply follow the signs indicating “RENTAL CARS”.

Major international car rental companies are present there. However, note that most vehicles are pre-booked, so last-minute availability is quite rare, especially in peak season.

Car Rental Companies at Malta Airport

  • AVIS
  • SIXT

Cost of Renting a Car in Malta

In general, renting a car in Malta is quite affordable, especially when compared to other European destinations. The cost varies depending on several factors, such as the vehicle model and rental duration, as well as the seasonality and how far in advance the booking is made.

For a rental, you can expect to pay around 10 to 15 euros per day for a small city car and up to 50 to 60 euros per day for a larger vehicle. To get the best deal, it’s advisable to book your car as early as possible.

General Information about Car Rental in Malta

Legal Age

In Malta, the legal driving age is 18 years old. However, keep in mind that car rental companies often set their own age limits. In most companies, to rent a car, you must be at least 21 years old and have held a driver’s license for over a year. To rent a car, you’ll need to present a valid driver’s license, an identification document (passport or ID card), and a credit card for payment.

If you’re under 25, note that many car rental agencies in Malta charge additional fees. Drivers over 70 years old often pay additional insurance fees, and some companies may refuse to rent you a car because their insurance doesn’t cover drivers of that age.

Traffic Regulations and Fines

Note that in Malta, driving is on the left side of the road, which can be a significant change if you’re used to driving on the right. In urban areas, the speed limit is generally 50 km/h and 80 km/h on highways.

Maltese drivers sometimes have a “sporty driving” style, and roads are not always in good condition, so always stay vigilant and fasten your seatbelt.

Using a mobile phone while driving is illegal, although you may notice that some Maltese drivers don’t always follow this rule.

If caught driving over the speed limit in Malta, fines are imposed based on the exceeding:

  • For exceeding the speed limit up to 15 km/h, the fine is 34.94 euros.
  • For exceeding the speed limit by more than 15 km/h, the fine is 69.88 euros.

Regarding alcohol consumption, driving under the influence is a serious offense in Malta. The alcohol limit in the blood is 0.8 mg of alcohol per ml of blood, 107 mg of alcohol per 100 ml of urine, or 35 micrograms of alcohol per 100 ml of exhaled air. This is roughly equivalent to a beer or a small glass of wine. Therefore, it’s highly recommended to abstain completely from drinking if you need to drive.

You can find the full list of traffic offenses and fines on the dedicated page: Land Transport Driving Offences on the Maltese government website.

Getting Around by Car in Malta

The roads in Malta are well-maintained on the main routes, but keep in mind that some rural areas outside the cities can be more chaotic. Additionally, roads are not always well-lit, especially on the outskirts of major cities.

Places like Valletta and Mdina often have narrow and ancient streets that are not designed for car traffic. Therefore, access by car is restricted or limited in these areas and is only allowed for residents and authorized services in certain zones.

For getting around, use Google Maps as it works very well on the archipelago. So, make sure you have access to the internet on your mobile device. If your current mobile provider doesn’t offer coverage in Malta, consider buying a SIM card with internet data upon your arrival. One minor inconvenience, Google Maps doesn’t always integrate construction works (very common on the island), so you might regularly encounter blocked streets.

In Malta, we recommend renting a small car as many roads, especially in old towns and rural areas, are quite narrow. A compact car will also make it easier for you to find parking, especially in busy urban areas.

Road Accidents in Malta

Road accidents are common in Malta. In case of an accident or emergency during your stay, including road accidents, dial the universal emergency number, 112. If you are involved in a road accident that does not require urgent medical care, it is important to contact the Local Enforcement System Agency (LESA) at the local number: +356 2132 0202. The collision unit will be responsible for drafting the accident report, which is crucial for processing insurance claims for car rental companies.

Always prioritize safety and notify your car rental company as soon as possible. They will guide you through their procedures and resolve any insurance issues. Remember to exchange contact and insurance information with the other parties involved and take photos of the accident scene for insurance documentation. Keep your rental agreement and insurance papers handy while driving.

Traveling to Gozo with a Rental Car from Malta

It is possible to travel to visit Gozo with your rental car, as most rental companies allow it. You will need to take the ferry at Ċirkewwa for the crossing. The ferry price is 15.70 euros, including both the car and the driver. The journey takes about 20 minutes.

Gozo offers a variety of attractions, landscapes, and discoveries that are more easily explorable by car. Just make sure to check with your rental provider their policy regarding ferry trips to Gozo to ensure there are no restrictions or additional conditions, especially regarding coverage in case of on-site issues.

Frequently Asked Questions about Car Rental in Malta (FAQ)

Where can I rent a car in Malta?

You can rent a car in Malta at the Malta International Airport or through online platforms that offer a wide range of options and competitive prices.

How much does it cost to rent a car in Malta?

The cost of renting a car in Malta can vary depending on several factors, such as the type of vehicle, rental duration, season, and rental company. Generally, you can expect to pay around 10 to 15 euros per day for a small city car and up to 50 to 60 euros per day for a larger vehicle.

What is the legal driving age in Malta?

The legal driving age in Malta is 18 years old.

What documents are required to rent a car in Malta?

You will need a valid driver’s license, an ID card, and a credit card. It is important to check the specific requirements of the rental company before booking.