Owning a Car in Malta – Buying Vs Renting – The complete guide to get you started.
I have owned a couple of cars in the past few years. I have always wondered the way forward on how to be more efficient – what type of fuel should the car use to be more efficient? Being a small country with a high number of vehicles on the road, what assessment should you make prior to purchasing a vehicle? And if you’re a foreigner, what is the process you should take before you purchase or rent a car in Malta; or even obtaining a licence in Malta?
We will be going through the process of owning a car in Malta, maintaining it and all of the above, within this blog.
There are a few things that need to be taken into account before buying or renting a car. Following, you’ll find all the pointers to get you started!
Buying vs Renting – Pros vs Cons
- Renting in the Common Way
- Renting through minute-by-minute rates
Driving licence in Malta – For EU and Non-EU citizens
- Short guide on how to get started
- Our personal experience
Buying vs Renting a car in Malta
As stated, I’ve got quite a good feel in this process. We will be going over the pros and cons of each.
Pros vs Cons
Buying a Car
- It’s yours, you own it, you can do whatever you want with the vehicle within the confinements of the law.
- There are no established monthly fees. It’s a onetime payment. This might be interpreted differently to each situation as you might have bought the car with a loan. Still however, after you pay the loan, the car is still yours not the company’s.
- You’ve got the option to choose whatever car within your budget you desire.
- It is usually cheaper than renting a vehicle. (this will be further discussed in the blog.) – NOT ALWAYS THOUGH.
- A lot of maintenance cost – Servicing, repairing body scrapes that aren’t your fault, etc.
- The stress of having your car parked outside – being scared that you won’t find your bumper after work or something.
- If you want to sell the car, there is a whole process on how to do so.
- The car usually devalues/depreciates. It’s rare that a car appreciates in value – normally in this situation the car would be esteemed as a classic vehicle.
- Licence and insurance costs might fluctuate on the high side.
For a full guide on how to buy a car in Malta – Click here.
Renting a Car
In recent times, there has been a new concept of renting a car which opens a totally new spectrum to renting a car. For this section, we will split the way of renting in two parts.
Common Way – Mainstream Car rental companies like Hertz, Goldcar, Avis, etc.
- Less worries as the vehicle is not yours.
- Less maintenance hassles and costs. This might differ from one company to another as some companies offer different services and terms.
- It is not as private as it is not yours.
- Monthly payment.
- Not customisable.
- Might be more costly.
- Might have some hassle with documentation (but not that likely).
- Fuel is on you.
Renting a car per trip through Rental Apps – like Goto app
You’ll book a car with the app and you’ll go for it wherever it is parked. The car you book is not always the same one.
- Might be cheaper per month (personally it is cheaper).
- No maintenance costs.
- Parking spaces = less stress.
- Environmentally friendly as they are mainly electric (differing from company to company).
- No fuel costs.
- No insurance and Licence costs.
- The car might not be always available.
- You have to park in their established spaces – so you cannot park the car in front of your house, unless their parking area is in front of you.
- It is a minute per minute use. (not always a bad thing).
- No personal connection with the vehicle (for me it is a small difference).
It depends which you choose. You need to make your homework on the regards. For myself I would consider the 3 of the following options accordingly.
- If you’re a foreigner coming for a week with your family
- I would rent a car the common way.
- If you’re living in Malta for the long haul
- I would analyse what is a must and what is not.
Driving licence in Malta – For EU and Non-EU citizens
This might be a hectic process for some, but fear no more, we’ve got you covered. Firstly, let’s assume you have got a licence in your country. Following, you’ll find the minimum requirements:
- Minimum 18 years
- In possession of a driving permit in your country
For EU citizens
- As you’re an EU citizen, you’re able to drive without any hassle with your own licence obtained back in your native EU country.
- Your native licence should be valid.
- You could obtain a Maltese driving licence after 185 days living in Malta.
- You’ll find all the requirements in the following link. – Click Here
- You’re able to drive in Malta with your obtained native licence up to 12 months. These 12 months start from the day of issuing in Malta.
- After these 12 months the licence expires and you are not able to use it anymore
- Following the date of expiry (12 months in Malta) you have to start the lessons to obtain the driving licence.
- All valid information it to be found within the following link. – Click Here
To obtain a licence in Malta click here
To learn more regarding the driving licence points system – click here
For me personally, all of the above is the assessment that I usually take. However, I’ll guide you even more with some top tips.
- Do your Accounts. – Financial and daily amends.
- Do you really need a car daily 24/7?
- Check this blog for the pros and cons of renting vs buying options
- Most importantly is checking if you have got a valid licence and what is the process to obtain one.
I think for myself, the most reasonable is to use the Goto app in Malta. For several reasons.
- I don’t use the car 24/7
- Too much maintenance and running costs.
- It is good for the environment
- Less hassle in general
Not a commissioned, biased point of view, but an honest one. I really think this is the future of cars not only in Malta, but all over the world. I think that people will be more willing to use these kinds of services in the future rather than having their own car or using the conventional renting services. I think that a lot of things will be standardised and more people will start using them. As competition rises, prices will be bound to decrease. I see a future in this kind of service and an even bigger potential.