How Can You Move to Malta from the UK?


Malta has remained a popular country for UK citizens to move to for multiple reasons including but not limited to economic stability and the amazing location in the Mediterranean Sea. But, with the Brexit referendum, moving to Malta just got more difficult for all British citizens.

Earlier, they could simply get on a plane and start living in Malta without any special permits or visas explains relocation expert John from CSB Group. But now, the process is more complicated. Here, we’ll take a look at how Brexit has impacted UK citizens already in Malta, how it impacts UK citizens who want to move to Malta, and how it impacts Malta in general.

UK Citizens Already Living in Malta

Since Brexit, Malta no longer offers EU citizenship to British nationals. While talks are being held about this, until something concrete comes out of it, British nationals will need to get residence permits if they are to live in Malta. The immigration policies for these permits will not be as lenient as pre-Brexit either. UK citizens are basically treated like any other non-EU nationals whenever they try moving to Malta after Brexit.

However, the Malta government reassured British nationals in the country by stating that all UK citizens already in Malta retain all their rights through a special permit. They needed to apply for something called a Withdrawal Agreement permit and as long as they were living in Malta before 1st January 2021 and applied for the permit before 30th June 2021, they would be fine. 

One important thing to note here though is that this permit only protected citizens’ rights while they waited for a decision on their residency application. If the application was rejected, they no longer got the same protection and had to go back to the UK.

UK Citizens Wanting to Move to Malta

As mentioned above, all UK citizens who wanted to move to Malta after Brexit had to go through the same process any non-EU nationals did. It goes without saying that this process involves a lot more paperwork and is far more complicated. While the British government is doing its best to reach an agreement with Malta for the countries to allow the same level of freedom to all nationals moving between both countries, until then, here are a few different types of permits British nationals can apply for if they want to move to Malta right now:

  • Right To Reside: If you’re a British citizen who isn’t working at the moment or is retired and wants to move to Malta, you will need to get a Right To Reside Certificate. There is a simple online process for this, and it will let you live in Malta for a year before requiring renewal. 
  • Right To Work: If you’re a Briton who wants to work in Malta, you will need to have a valid travel document as well as a work permit before entering Malta. You will also need to renew your work permit regularly.
  • Retiring In Malta: If you’re a British citizen who is looking to get a retirement visa and retire in Malta, you’ll be exempt from the Schengen Agreement. But you’ll need to prove you receive at least €6,500 in pension every year.
  • Students: If you’re a British student who wants to move to Malta for education, you’ll need to produce an enrolment certificate or sufficient documentation to prove third-party sponsorship. You will need to provide the same documentation as above if you choose to work in Malta after completing your education.

Brexit’s Impact on Malta

It goes without saying that Brexit’s impact on Malta spans multiple areas including travel, the job market, and the economy. This moving to Malta guide would not be complete without a brief look at how the country is doing today. So, let’s get right into it:

The Job Market: There has been a lot of discussion regarding the loss of jobs ever since Brexit. Malta’s labour force is certainly at risk because of Brexit. A lot of the UK citizens in the workforce are leaving Malta for other European countries where they don’t have to worry about leaving because of Brexit. Even the Maltese people who were in the UK are choosing to move back home rather than stay there without the protection of the EU. But even though the job market is unstable at the moment, the economy is expected to remain stable.

Travel: There has definitely been a major impact on travel to and from Malta because of Brexit. People who may have been planning to retire in Malta will not find it as easy anymore. Luckily for Britons planning to vacation in Malta though, they will get covered by the Schengen Agreement, meaning they will be able to travel freely to and from Malta. While it doesn’t seem like travel should be impacted too much, the process has become more complicated for sure which may be a deterrent for many British nationals for who Malta was a no-brainer earlier.

All in all, for UK citizens who really want to move to Malta or were already in the process of moving, everything just got a whole lot more complicated. But, for UK citizens who haven’t yet made up their mind about moving, some additional paperwork and documentation should not be too much of a hindrance when making such an important life decision. The pros of finding and living in a beautiful home in the Maltese archipelago far outweigh the cons of additional paperwork. That’s why, in the long run, there shouldn’t be too much of a difference in terms of the number of British nationals moving to Malta.