-Where were you born?
I was born in Budapest, Hungary but moved to Malmö, Sweden with my family when I was 1.5 years old.
-In which country and city are you living now?
In St. Julian's, Malta
-Are you living alone or with your family?
I am living with my French boyfriend.
-How long have you been living in Malta?
For 8 years , but I spent 6 months of those in London.
-What is your age?
-When did you come up with the idea of living in Malta?
I first came to Malta to study English in 2004 and fell in love with the country. It was very easy for me to make the decision to move here. My main reason was to study at the University of Malta, which was completely for free and with lessons taught in English. Also, Malta is just a short flight from home and I knew that I could fly home often, directly and cheaply. Another factor that helped me decide was was the fantastic weather! Do I need to compare Sweden to Malta? Malta is also bilingual, which makes it very easy to adjust, make friends and find a job.
-Was it hard to get a visa or a work permit?
Since Malta is in the European Union it was no problem at all.
-Was it difficult for you to get medical insurance before you went there or when you first arrived?
Not at all
-How do you make your living in Malta? Do you have any type of income generated?
I think that it is quite easy to find a job in Malta. When I first arrived I was just 19 years old and the first job I took was as a waitress. This job was extremely easy to find as there are so many restaurants everywhere in Malta. I worked there for about 2 months and then I found out how many foreign betting companies are situated in Malta. Since these betting companies offer customer care in several languages it was very easy finding a job as a Swedish customer care agent. I got this job through a friend who was already working there. However, there are several recruitment agencies who only work with betting companies and getting in touch with them is a good step.
Once I was finished with my studies I stopped my part-time job as a customer care agent and started working on a project with my boyfriend. We purchased the website www.malta.com two years ago and completely rebuilt the whole site. The new version has only been live for one year so this website is something that we are working very hard on. Registering a company in Malta is also very easy and all the guidelines are very straightforward.
-Do you speak the local language and do you think it's important to speak the local language?
As Malta is bi-lingual I don't feel that it is very important to speak Maltese in addition to English. Almost everyone speaks English and most things are written in English too. However, if you intend to work in a government institution I do think that it is important to speak Maltese. I noticed this through my studies and the placements I had.
-Do you miss home and family sometimes?
I miss my family, friends and Sweden a lot. I feel that it is not always easy making friends in Malta as people just stay a few months and then leave. I miss the nature and greenery that there is in Sweden.
-Do you have other plans for the future?
We are planning to spend half our time in Malta and the other half in France from next year. We are also going to continue to develop malta.com and promote Malta so that more people can see how great this island is.
-What about housing, have you bought, or are you renting a home? How much do you pay for it?
We have been renting different flats for years as there are so many to choose from. A nice flat in St. Julian's with 2-3 bedrooms costs around 600-800 EUR and a penthouse with 2 bedrooms and a sea view costs around 1400 EUR.
After spending money on rent for so many years, we decided that it was better to buy a flat. Now we are paying the loan each month instead of rent to someone else and that's great. We now have our own home right in St. Julian's with great views over the whole bay.
-What is the cost of living in Malta?
When considering what the average wage is in Malta I think that it is quite expensive here. Food might be a bit cheaper but rents, eating out, clothes, bills...not really.
-What do you think about the locals?
The locals are very friendly and helpful and will always help you and go out of their way for you. However, the service in Malta can be really terrible.
-What are the positive and negative aspects of living in Malta?
The great thing about living in Malta is that the weather is great. You can spend so much time outdoors rock climbing, trekking, jogging and just having a great time. BBQ in December and swimming in October. As Malta is so small nothing is far away and you don't have to commute hours to get to work. There are also people from all over the world in Malta and it's fantastic because you meet so many great people and you learn a lot.
The negative thing is that as it is so small, you can get bored of Malta quite fast. What works for us is that we travel quite often and then we are always happy when we are here. Malta also lacks greenery and nature, it is a very dry island, but then we have the sea compensating for that :)
-Do you have any tips for our readers about living in Malta?
I was living in Malta for years and there were still so many places I hadn't visited yet, especially in the south. I think that people living here should try different things that will make them discover the island. I joined a rock climbing club and I have seen so many beautiful spots in Malta, I’m just amazed. Also, there are a lot of local events in Malta that are really nice, you just have to do the research. I always think that there there is not much going on in Malta, but there is.