Malta was part of the British Empire for more than a century, only becoming an independent country in 1964. The new Government eventually abandoned the British pound, shillings and pence on May 16 1972, replacing it with a new decimal currency. Today, Malta is a member of the Euro, and one of the most affordable holiday destinations for British tourists. The cost of a week-long holiday has risen by just £1 from last year. So, why not stretch your holiday cash further with Malta holidays in 2012?
Holidays in Malta begin at the airport, which offers a great bus service to the major tourist areas. The number 8 bus will take you straight from arrivals to the centre of Valletta for just 0.47 euros, although the bus driver may charge you extra for heavy luggage. An express bus will get you to your destination slightly quicker for 1.16 euros – just don’t expect to receive the correct change!
Maltese taxis operate on two separate license systems. White taxis are generally older and more expensive, whilst black taxis (which can be any colour) are cheaper and harder to find. A white taxi will cost around 20 euros on a meter for most destinations from the airport, compared to around 35 euros on holidays to Gran Canaria. Try learning a few words of Maltese ahead of your holiday to give yourself a chance of spotting a black taxi, which offers a fixed rate to most resorts.
Driving is on the left in Malta, and a road trip is a fantastic way to explore the island’s eclectic mix of cultural sights. Car hire prices are amongst the lowest in Europe, starting from just 11 euros per day, including mileage and insurance. Although the driving age is 18, some car hire firms don’t insure tourists under 25. It’s advisable to check whether you’re eligible before arriving.
Self-catering apartments are a popular option for holidaymakers in Malta, and there are plenty of supermarkets to choose from. A 1.5 litre bottle of mineral water will cost around 1 euro, with a loaf of bread coming in at about 50 cents. Restaurant prices are similar to those found on holidays to Tenerife, with a plate of pasta and salad coming in at about 10 euros. Night owls can tuck into a midnight snack of burger, chips and a drink for 6 euros. If you’re planning a self-catering trip to Malta, keep an eye out for food vans selling fresh fish, vegetables and fruit at unbeatable prices.