The country code for Malta is 356. To dial Malta internationally, you must dial 00 356 XXXX XXXX.
Phone numbers follow an eight-digit format and are generally written as: 356 XXXX XXXX or 356 XX XXXXX. There are no area codes in Malta.
Fixed lines in Malta generally begin with a 2: 2XXX XXXX. Mobile phone numbers begin with a 7 or 9: 7XXX XXXX or 9XXX XXXX.
The Malta Communications Authority regulates the telecommunications sector in Malta.
Fixed line telephone services are available from local companies Melita and GO. Telephone services are available in post-paid or pre-paid options.
Post-paid options cost as little as €6 per month, while pre-paid options allow you to top up in denominations of €5 to €50.
Long distance calling fees on fixed lines cost from €0.03 (to Europe & North America) to €0.35 (to Africa) per minute.
Pre-paid top up cards can be purchased at Malta Post and hundreds of retail outlets throughout the islands. Calls within networks are often free.
To open a fixed line telephone account, contact a local service provider. Installation wait times are generally short, however, be advised that installers may be required to drill holes in your flat or house’s rock walls to run wires.
Cellphone GSM frequencies in Malta are 900/1800. Mobiles operating on 900MHz or 1800MHz will work in Malta. Nationwide 3G/3GS coverage is available.
Mobile phone services are available from local companies Melita, RedTouch, and GO, as well as international company Vodafone. Mobile tariffs are inexpensive compared to North America, and comparable with the rest of Europe. Mobile plans are available in pre-paid and post-paid options. Calls within networks are often free.
On pre-paid or pay as you go plans SMS are available from 0.04 each, and local calling is available from 0.08 per minute.
Post-paid monthly plans are available from €15 to €95 per month for mobiles and Smartphones.
Long distance calling fees on mobile phones cost from €0.25 (Europe) to €1.99 (South America & Caribbean) per minute.
Free mobile phones are available on some post-paid monthly plans, subject to multi-year contracts. Purchasing mobile phones outright in Malta can be more expensive for some brands (e.g. Apple, Blackberry) than in Europe and North America, and cheaper for others (e.g. Nokia, Samsung, Vodafone).
To obtain mobile services, visit a local service provider. If you are a foreigner you may be asked to present you passport, proof of residence, and a deposit on your account.
Pre-paid credit can be purchased by calling your local mobile provider, visiting your local provider’s store, or by sending an SMS code to your local mobile provider. Pre-paid credit is generally purchased in €10 increments. Post-paid plans are generally billed monthly, and can be paid online, in person, or at a Malta Post branch.
Telecommunications Providers in Malta
GO offers mobile, telephone, TV and Internet services in Malta. The Telemalta Corporation Act of 1974 created the Telemalta Corporation, which was given monopoly rights as operator and regulator or all telecommunications services in Malta. GO (formerly Maltacom) was created in 1997 and assumed the assets of Telemalta. Today, the majority stakeholder in GO is Dubai Holding TECOM Investments.
Melita offers mobile, telephone, TV and Internet services in Malta. Melita was launched as a telecommunications provider in Malta in 1992. Majority stakeholders in the company include GMT Communications, MC Venture Partners, Blackrock Communications Ltd, and Gasan Group.
RedTouch offers mobile services in Malta. RedTouch was launched in 2008 as a Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO) operating on the Vodafone Malta network’s infrastructure. RedTouch purchases services from Vodafone, enhancing and reselling them to consumers. RedTouch is a subsidiary of ONE Productions Ltd, which also owns one of Malta’s private television stations, ONE, and ONE Radio.
Vodafone offers mobile and mobile Internet services in Malta. Vodafone is a British multinational telecommunications company headquartered in London, United Kingdom. It is the world’s second largest telecommunications company, and owns and operates networks in over 30 countries, with partner networks in 40 additional countries. Vodafone also owns 45% America’s largest telecommunications company, Verizon Wireless.
By Jess Gerrow, who traded city life in Canada for island life in the Mediterranean two years ago. She is a postgraduate marketing student, blogger, and freelance writer.