Are you thinking about second citizenship? Or are you looking for a better passport than what you already own? Perhaps you’re curious about what are some of the best passports to have. If so, the Maltese passport is an excellent top-tier passport to consider. This guide provides in-depth information on owning a Malta second passport, as well as all the advantages that come with it.
Malta passport free entry countries
The Maltese passport is a key biometric document issued to individuals who obtain Maltese citizenship. Since Malta is part of the European Union, a Maltese passport is actually an EU passport, so you have the same rights as an EU citizen. Owning a Maltese passport means you have the right to live, work, and study in any country within the EU, with free movement and residence rights.
The Malta passport affords visa-free travel to over 160 countries including, but not limited to, the EU’s Schengen Zone, Asia, the Americas, and Africa.
That said, you can visit countries on every continent visa-free, visa on arrival, or with an eTA (electronic travel authorization). Let’s take a closer look at the countries accessible to Maltese citizens.
|Country||Visa-free access||Visa on arrival||eTA||Visa online||Visa required|
|Antigua and Barbuda||✓|
|Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba||✓|
|Bosnia and Herzegovina||✓|
|British Virgin Islands||✓|
|Central African Republic||✓|
|Congo (Dem. Rep.)||✓|
|Cote d'Ivoire (Ivory Coast)||✓|
|French West Indies||✓|
|Northern Mariana Islands||✓|
|Papua New Guinea||✓|
|Saint Kitts and Nevis||✓|
|Sao Tome and Principe||✓|
|St. Pierre and Miquelon||✓|
|St. Vincent and the Grenadines||✓|
|Trinidad and Tobago||✓|
|Turks and Caicos Islands||✓|
|United Arab Emirates||✓|
|United States of America||✓|
|US Virgin Islands||✓|
|Wallis and Futuna||✓|
Malta passport benefits
Owning a Republic of Malta passport serves as both an insurance policy and as a way of unlocking new opportunities for yourself and your family. As a Maltese citizen, you can enjoy a host of lifelong benefits.
Malta’s passport power is undeniable. It gets you:
- Maltese citizenship for life
- The right to travel, live, work and study anywhere in the EU
- Visa-free travel to over 160 destinations, including the US, Canada, and the UK
- Free access to high-quality schooling
- Access to top-rated healthcare
- Better quality of life
Malta passport ranking
The Maltese passport is one of the best and most respected travel documents in the world, providing partial or full visa-free access to 198 countries worldwide, according to the Global Passport Index.
On a global passport power rank scale, Malta’s passport is incredibly powerful, ranking 38th in the world.
Malta Passport Cost
Contrary to popular belief, Malta doesn’t do a ‘passport for sale’ scheme. However, it’s possible to obtain Maltese citizenship by making a qualifying investment in the nation — starting from €690,000 + costs. Investors must make an exceptional investment, invest in real estate, and make a donation to an approved organization or society. This grants you the right to obtain a Maltese passport.
Since 2014, Malta has provided citizenship status to qualifying foreign investors who place a substantial investment in the Maltese economy. The plan calls for an investment of at least $600,000 and a three-year residency requirement, or $750,000 and a 12-month residency requirement in rare cases.
When it comes to processing your Malta passport application, it costs €500 per applicant.
Malta Passport Requirements
A Malta passport application is assessed and ultimately approved by the government agency, Identity Malta. Among certain requirements, applicants must prove that they have established honest links with Malta and must take the Oath of Allegiance to obtain a Maltese passport.
How to get a Malta passport?
Getting a Malta passport is a simple procedure, however, the due diligence part can be tricky. If you meet the requirements, you can be granted citizenship and a passport after just 12 or 36 months of residence in Malta.
There are several ways you can get a Malta investor passport and effectively obtain Maltese citizenship, depending on your situation and objectives.
- Become a Maltese Citizen by Descent — you’re born abroad but have family residing in Malta.
- Become a Maltese Citizen by marriage — you marry a Maltese citizen
- Become a Maltese Citizen by means of naturalization
- Become a Maltese Citizen by means of investment
Malta citizenship by descent
Anyone born outside of Malta who proves that they are of Maltese descent, whether by coming from a direct line of ascendants born in Malta, or a Maltese parent, shall be entitled to gain Maltese citizenship by descent. In such cases, residency requirements become void, and the descendant gains immediate citizenship.
Malta citizenship by investment
Malta’s citizenship by investment program, which is more accurately referred to as the Maltese Citizenship Act Granting of Citizenship for Exceptional Services Regulations (CES), is a citizenship by naturalization scheme that provides qualifying investors with the opportunity to obtain passports for themselves and their family members, provided that they make a real estate investment, as well as financial contributions to a government fund and an investment in government-approved bonds.
Malta citizenship by investment is one of the most popular in Europe primarily because of the host of benefits it provides to investors, as well as the short timeframe within which you can get a new passport.
How to get a Maltese passport by investment
Applications for the Maltese citizenship scheme are carefully examined and evaluated through a four-stage due diligence process. Depending on the invested sum, applicants who meet the program’s requirements will receive Maltese citizenship in 12 or 36 months of residency in Malta, and thereby become Maltese passport holders.
To become eligible for the Citizenship by Naturalization for Exceptional Services by Direct Investment (CES) program, you must:
- Be over 18 years of age;
- Not be from a country on the list of “prohibited” countries;
- Have no criminal record;
- Invest at least €600,000 to receive residency status in 36 months, or at least €750.000 to receive residency status in 12 months;
- Donate €10,000 to a Malta-registered organization that is approved by the Community Malta Agency;
- Either place €700,000 in the purchase of a Maltese real estate property, or rent one for at least €16,000 per year;
- Submit a valid residency card as proof of your residency.
Process of getting a Maltese passport by investment
There are four steps in obtaining a Maltese passport and citizenship through the Maltese Citizenship by Naturalization for Exceptional Services by Direct Investment (CES) program.
- Maltese residency
To get residency in Malta, the primary applicant and any dependents included in the application must first apply for a Maltese residence card. They must first pass the CMA’s extensive due diligence assessment to obtain the residency card.
If the residency application is accepted, you will be issued a resident card with a 36-month validity period. Following that, the next step is to go to Malta (excluding young children) to gather biometric data for the residency card. You must first lease an apartment before submitting your residency application.
Payment: you must pay €10,000 for the residence permit to get the residency secured; application fees from the government are €5,000 for primary applicants and €1,000 for dependents; a €27.50 residency card fee per applicant.
- Citizenship eligibility
A citizenship eligibility application must be submitted to the CMA within 12 months of the residence card’s issuing date. In case the application is not submitted during this time, the card will be revoked.
The CMA conducts due diligence to ensure that the application is completed correctly, and they may require some additional information as well. The CMA then applies to the Minister, who decides if the applicants are eligible to seek citizenship.
Applications are typically handled between 120 and 150 calendar days. You will begin the citizenship procedure if you are eligible, and you will be given a Letter of Approval in Principle, after which you must pay the additional payments.
Payment: due diligence expenses are €5,000 for the primary applicant, €15,000 for the benefactor, if applicable, and €10,000 for each 13 y.o. and above dependents (paid directly to the Agency); €1,000 per applicant admin fee.
You can apply for Malta citizenship to the CMA after 12 months or 36 months of stay. The CMA updates its due diligence on the applicants and provides the Minister with its final conclusions. Citizenship is conferred once the application has been approved by the Minister.
From the date of approval, the processing period for obtaining citizenship is around 2 to 3 months. If the citizenship application is granted, the primary citizenship application must meet the Exceptional Investment, Donation, and Property criteria to begin the naturalization process.
Payment: a €500 admin fee per applicant, paid directly to the Agency.
Following completion of all the investment criteria, there will be an invitation to Malta to take the Oath of Allegiance. The Oath must be taken within 6 months after the date of the Letter of Approval in Principle.
Applicants are granted Maltese citizenship and a Certificate of Naturalization. Every year, the names of all naturalized citizens are published in the Government Gazette.
The CMA performs continual surveillance for five years. If you do not follow the program’s conditions, your Maltese citizenship may be withdrawn.
Payment: Government Direct Investment – €600,000 or €740,000 for the main applicant, plus €50,000 for each dependent, and a €10,000 charity donation. There is also a residential property lease for a minimum of €16,000 per year for 5 years or purchase of real estate for a minimum of €700,000 to be held for at least 5 years.
For more information about the Malta second citizenship requirements, take a look at our ultimate guide about Malta Citizenship by Investment.
Processing Time for Maltese Citizenship by Naturalization for Exceptional Services by Direct Investment
The application procedure can be difficult and time-consuming. You must be properly documented to prevent any issues. Make sure you fill out the application forms completely and accurately.
If you complete the Level 1 due diligence and send the Community Malta Agency your application for a residency permit, they will check if you satisfy all the requirements, and if you do, they will submit the eligibility application. They will carry out a further stage of verification (2-4) and transmit it to the relevant Maltese ministers, who will check before deciding regarding your qualifications.
You must also have resided in Malta for at least 36 months – or 12 months, depending on the invested sum – before you can apply for Maltese citizenship, and have fulfilled the investment requirements. After you obtain your Letter of Approval in Principle you will need to take the Oath of Allegiance in order to receive an official naturalization certificate. Agents from the Community Malta Agency will keep an eye on all application cases for five years after citizenship has been conferred.
Dual Citizenship in Malta
Malta accepts dual nationality. This means that you can acquire Maltese nationality and maintain your original citizenship, however, it’s essential to check the laws of your place of origin to see whether or not dual citizenship rights are applicable in your case. In the case you can`t hold dual citizenship status in your native country, you might have to give up your primary citizenship.
Maltese Passport Renewal
You can maintain your Maltese passport for the rest of your life if you renew it every ten years after receiving it, as this official document is considered biometric.
Costs of Maltese Passport
If you apply for citizenship in Malta by investment, you will have to set aside at least €690,000 for the application sum, not including other costs such as fees for background checks and other legal fees. The cost of a passport for a minor is €70, while the cost for a kid under ten is €16. For a price of €140, you can select an emergency passport that is issued in four hours.
MEIN passport: investment options
There are a series of financial requisites that must be fulfilled in order to apply for Malta citizenship by investment. The investment amount must add up to a minimum of 690,000 + costs.
Real estate investment
Is it worth having a Maltese passport?
If you are looking for global mobility for yourself and your family, tax exemptions, a beautiful place to live or retire, the Maltese passport is a fantastic asset to have.
You can also speak to one of our consultants in investment migration today. Whether the Granting of Citizenship for Exceptional Services or our other highly-popular residency-by-investment schemes like Portugal’s Golden Visa, our step-by-step strategy, tailored to each client, means we’re there for you every step of the way.
Malta’s Citizenship by Investment program offers many privileges, including:
Do I need to stay in Malta?
Applicants for the Malta Citizenship by Investment Program 2021 must prove that they have a genuine link to the country. This means that investors must establish residence 12 months before applying for the program, which entails purchasing or leasing an apartment. If investors intend to rent a property long term, they must be able to provide a copy of the lease agreement and proof of being resident in Malta for at least 183 days of the year.
More on Maltese citizenship
Frequently Asked Questions about the Malta passport
How much is a Maltese passport?
The actual Republic of Malta passport costs €500. If you’re looking to invest in the country in exchange for obtaining a second passport in a relatively short timeframe, then the minimum investment amount is €690,000 + costs.
Can you visa-free travel with a Malta second passport to more than 130 countries?
In actual fact, you can visa-free travel to over 184 destinations worldwide, including the EU Schengen Area, the UK, Canada, and the US.
Is the Malta passport biometric?
Yes, the Malta passport is biometric.
What is the Malta passport price?
The Malta passport costs €500 per person.
How to get Malta citizenship by investment?
To qualify for the Malta passport program, the investment amount must add up to a minimum of €690,000. This includes: An exceptional direct investment of a minimum of €600,000 or €750,000, depending on the residence period selected 12 or 36 months. An investment of €700,000 in residential real estate, or a rental agreement at a minimum value of €16,000 per annum which must be maintained for five years. A compulsory donation of €10,000 to a registered philanthropic, cultural, sport, scientific, animal welfare, or artistic non-governmental approved organization or society.
What is Malta citizenship by the investment cost?
Malta’s passport program costs a minimum of €690,000. This is excluding the processing fees, due diligence background check fees, legal fees, and the passport application form fees.
Is Malta a strong passport?
Malta is a member of the EU and a Schengen Area, which makes its passport strong in terms of travel and business mobility, and the possibility of having freedom of living and working in any EU country.
How many countries can you visit with a Maltese passport?
The Maltese passport currently ranks 38th place according to the Global Citizen Solutions Global Passport Index. It provides visa-free access to 170 destinations, which makes it one of the most attractive passports in the world with a high mobility score.
Which countries are visa-free with a Malta passport?
The Malta passport affords visa-free travel to 170 countries including but not limited to the EU’s Schengen Zone, plus many countries in the Americas, Asia, and Africa. That said, perhaps the greatest selling point of a Maltese passport is that Maltese citizens are free to travel to the EU, Schengen Area, and the United Kingdom.
Is it easy to get a Maltese passport?
The process is quite straightforward: a four-tier due diligence procedure is used to verify and assess the application for Malta Citizenship by Investment, and if you match the qualifications for this program, you will be given citizenship and a passport after just 12 or 36 months of residency in Malta.