All restrictions lifted on weddings and events as of 2nd May

The Deputy Prime Minister Chris Fearne has announced that all restrictions on weddings and events will be lifted from 2nd May. That means that person limits, vaccine requirements and mask-wearing will no longer be mandatory at weddings and events. Malta will also remove obligations for a passenger locator form for anyone arriving into the country from 2nd May.

Fearne made the announcement along with several changes to mask-wearing rules, quarantine, and the opening of English Language Schools. He said he expected all measures to be lifted soon, but did not give a date.

The PLF has been controversial, given the backlog and queues it creates at the Malta International Airport. PLFs will be needed for the red and dark red zones only.

The only people who will need to remain in isolation and quarantine are positive cases. The quarantine period will be seven days. This will apply to both vaccinated and unvaccinated. Primary contacts will no longer need to quarantine. People who live in the same household as a positive case will not be obliged to quarantine, but it is recommended if they are showing symptoms.

When it comes to masks, they will no longer be obligatory except in hospitals, clinics, elderly homes and flights. However, it is recommended that masks be used on public transport and in closed spaces.

Read full article here: https://lovinmalta.com/news/watch-weddings-and-events-completely-back-to-normal-from-2nd-may-chris-fearne-announces/
Relaxing of COVID-19 rules in Malta

From Monday 11th April, the Covid-19 requirements upon entering Malta, are as follows:

A negative PCR test or rapid test valid to enter into Malta – According to the notice both the Rapid Antigen Test (RAT) and the Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test will be accepted, although the latter can be done earlier. For RATs, the test has to be performed “not more than 24 hours prior to arrival in Malta”. Those opting for the PCR test, which in some countries is pricier and the result takes longer to come out, can do the test up to 72 hours before arriving in Malta. Guidelines published by the public health authorities explaining the legal notice state that the RAT tests must be ones that are included on a special list by the European Council. The result must also be in English, the authorities note. If unavailable in English, an English translation certified by the laboratory or a medical doctor is to be presented. RAT tests are not accepted unless on the EU digital COVID certificate format. Results from self-testing are not accepted. The passenger locator form, used for contact tracing purposes, will still be needed.

A recovery certificate permits entry to Malta – According to the legal notice, a certificate of recovery is accepted for 180 days after a person first tested positive for COVID-19.

Quarantine free – Individuals travelling from Red Countries who have recovered from COVID-19 within the past 180 days, or those who can present a negative PCR test (no older than 72 hours), will be allowed to enter the country quarantine-free.

31 productions were filmed in Malta during the pandemic

The film industry in Malta generated €98 million between March 2020 and December 2021, despite the COVID-19 pandemic, the Malta Film Commission said on Tuesday.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, 31 productions were filmed in Malta.

Film commissioner Johann Grech, speaking at the Malta Film Studios in Kalkara, said recent productions in Malta included feature films, television series, documentaries and reality shows.

Last year, a total of 22 productions took place on the island and generated €68 million for the economy.

He said that a cash rebate scheme managed by the commission had enabled foreign productions to benefit from a rebate of up to 40% of expenditure.

Read the full article here: https://timesofmalta.com/articles/view/98-million-generated-by-the-local-film-industry-despite-the-pandemic.927106

 

 

Malta, the island welcoming digital nomads

Boasting one of the world’s highest vaccination rates, Malta is now welcoming back visitors safely with cash incentives and a recently launched Nomad Residence Permit.

Malta may be small but its response to the pandemic has been mighty. Once enforcing some of the strictest restrictions in Europe, the country has finally been able to open its borders and welcome back visitors safely, boasting one of the world’s highest vaccination rates.

Nearly 81% of all Malta residents are fully vaccinated. In fact, Malta and Portugal are the only two nations in Europe that have reached a more than 80% vaccination rate across their total population (including teenagers age 12 to 17, who have been eligible to get the vaccine since summer 2021), according to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC). This makes them two of the only places likely to avoid a winter resurgence says the ECDC director, and among the safest places to travel. Visitors to Malta must be vaccinated themselves if they want to skip a 14-day quarantine.

The country is more than ready to welcome back vaccinated international visitors – especially those looking to take advantage of their company’s new remote work policies. In June 2021, Malta launched their Nomad Residence Permit, which enables visitors to keep their current employment in another country and live in Malta for up to a year (with the opportunity for renewal). Applicants must prove they can work remotely, work for an employer or offer freelance or consulting services and earn at least the equivalent of €2,700 monthly.

The Nomad Residence Permit enables holders to retain their current employment based in another country whilst legally residing in Malta. The Permit is open to individuals who can work remotely and independent of location, using telecommunications technologies.

Malta already hosts and welcomes digital nomads from the EU. This community of entrepreneurial expats make the most of Malta’s island vibes, a nomad lifestyle, business networking opportunities and cultural experiences. The Nomad Residence Permit is open to individuals from third countries, who would normally (but not necessarily) require a Visa to travel to Malta.

The permit will be issued for one year and can be renewed upon application at the discretion of Residency Malta, as long as the applicant still meets the set eligibility criteria. Applicants who are interested in staying for less than a year will be issued with a National Visa for the duration of their stay.

Read more: https://www.bbc.com/travel/article/20211109-malta-the-island-welcoming-digital-nomads
The STAR Journey in partnership with Forbes Travel Guide

During the past months, as tourism travel restrictions started to be lifted, the Malta Hotels and Restaurants Association, the Ministry of Tourism, and the Malta Tourism Authority recognized the need to embark on a coordinated effort to ensure that the Maltese hospitality sector is viewed as adequately safe and prepared to welcome and service the most discerning tourists. Towards this end, a team of experts facilitated by the Mediterranean Tourism Foundation developed the STAR Journey initiative, a comprehensive quality programme which aims to set Malta as an In-Partnership Forbes Travel Guide Destination with a focus on Service Excellence and Safety – a first in the world.

Read the full article: https://winning.training/star-journey
Santa’s City to return to Valletta

Fairyland – Santa’s City will return to Valletta from the 3rd December to 2nd January 2022!

Fairyland promises to be exactly what anyone would expect, following its first edition in 2019, as the entrance to Malta’s Capital City will be transformed into an original adaptation of Santa’s City, all set up to give the ultimate experience to children, and those who are still children at heart!

Among the attractions expected to return, Rudolph’s Wheel will once again provide the best bird’s eye view of Valletta and neighbouring cities and the Ice Rink will be providing quite a festive adrenaline rush!. Naturally, the man himself, Santa Claus will be in residence at Fairyland, ready to meet children from all over the world, compile his Naughty and Nice list and even get a head-start on delivering gifts.

Christmas Food and Drink will be available from Santa’s numerous cabins, and there will also be a couple of surprises!

The return of Fairyland – Santa’s City is another step forward in our path towards the normality, we strongly missed due to the pandemic. Through this event, we will be providing families with the opportunity to enjoy the Christmas spirit with their loved ones through a number of attractions aimed at nurturing the positive atmosphere that the festive season is well renowned for in the Maltese Islands. The Ministry for Tourism and Consumer Protection together with the Malta Tourism Authority will continue working hard to assure that our country remains an entertainment bastion in the Mediterranean,” remarked Minister for Tourism and Consumer Protection Clayton Bartolo.

Read the full article: https://www.mta.com.mt/en/news-details/337
Malta headlines as one of the COVID safest winter countries

Malta has once again made international headlines, and this time, its due to it being one of the safest places in Europe to visit during the winter as another COVID-19 wave surges. According to international newsroom ‘The Telegraph’, our island joins Portugal in being the safest places in Europe for the upcoming winter, with expert leading disease monitoring across the continent. A new wave of infections is sweeping Western Europe and the UK, but Malta and Portugal will be avoiding the spike due to the high rate of vaccination.

Dr. Bruno Ciancio, director of surveillance at the European Center for Disease Control (ECDC), said in a Telegraph interview that there are three epidemiological trends emerging across Europe, dictating how countries will fare this winter.

He highlighted how the critical factor in all this is vaccination, saying that the pandemic will be driven more and more by those who did not receive their jab. He said the countries most likely to avoid a substantial resurgence are Malta and Portugal as they have fully immunized more than 80% of their total population. Most other countries, like the UK, fall into a second tier where overall vaccination rates are around 60 to 80%.

Article credits: https://maltadaily.mt/malta-headlines-as-one-of-the-covid-safest-winter-countries/

 

 

MICE are back in Malta

Over the past 5 weeks, we at Colours of Malta, have hosted 6 groups with a total of 500 people coming from Italy, France, Germany and the UK. Each of our groups stayed at 4 and 5 star hotels and had some great incentive programmes planned out whilst enjoying the warm weather.

It’s been so exciting to see that the Beauty, Finance and Hospitality industries, to mention a few, are back on track, fully energised and investing in their business and employees again.

Learn more about our events on our Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/coloursofmalta

A step in the right direction for Malta’s Tourism Industry

Malta Tourism Authority welcomes the great news that the Malta International Airport welcomed a total of 418,473 passengers in September, which also marked the first time, since 1999, that September outpaced August in terms of passenger traffic, and the strongest month, in terms of passenger volumes, since the COVID-19 pandemic started.

Seat-occupancy levels also remained below pre-pandemic levels, as airlines carried passengers to and from the airport at an average seat load factor of just over 70%.

The recent news published by the Malta International Airport is truly encouraging for the local tourism sector. Notwithstanding the challenging times, Malta managed to strike a balance between the lives and livelihoods of the Maltese people. We will continue working hard to assure that the hospitality industry continues to recover and assure that Malta becomes a home of tourism excellence for the years to come,” remarked Minister for Tourism and Consumer Protection Clayton Bartolo.

This is great news for Malta, especially given the circumstances which we all have had to live with in the past months, and naturally, it fills us, as an Authority, with a strong sense of positivity, coupled with the right amount of energy, to look forward to ending 2021 and starting 2022 with further positive results. I believe that our marketing efforts, together with the €20m-strong Tourism Recovery Plan which we have laid out together with the Ministry for Tourism and Consumer Protection, as well as, the excellent way in which the Health Authorities have handled, and are still handling the pandemic, all played a crucial role in the positive results which we have seen for September. This is also another example of just how important it is for all stakeholders to work together for the greater good, when faced with such an unprecedented crisis,” MTA CEO Johann Buttigieg said.

Malta International Airport also reported that the United Kingdom retained its spot as the top driver of passenger traffic as it continues its path of recovery, with over 108,000 passengers departing or arriving from this destination in September, followed by the Italian, German, French and Spanish markets.

A word of thanks must go to our marketing teams at Head Office, and our teams across Europe and the world for being resilient in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, working closely with the management, as one big team, and adapting to the ever-changing situation of the pandemic across various countries and regions. We have used the pandemic to reinvent our marketing strategy, investing in digital media campaigns, to make people feel close to the Maltese Islands, even during the strictest of lockdowns. This has paid off, and is paying off, with the encouraging results which we are seeing. I am sure that with regards to the UK market, we will continue to see further improvement, especially with restrictions being eased further in the UK,” MTA Deputy CEO and Chief Marketing Officer, Carlo Micallef added.

Article credits: https://www.mta.com.mt/en/news-details/327
MTA Wins Big In London’s Travel Industry Awards

The Malta Tourism Authority has once again been awarded the ‘Tourist Board of the Year’ Award at the prestigious Travel Industry Awards 2021 by TTG held in London. This is the fourth time that this prestigious award was won by the MTA after successfully clinching the trophy in 2016, 2017, 2019 and 2021.

The Travel Industry Awards by TTG, in association with Virgin Atlantic, brought the travel community together to celebrate the businesses that have grown stronger through the Covid-19 crisis, and helped to highlight the most trusted travel brands for consumers.

In a year of setbacks and challenges for travel, companies and individuals have been tested to their limits. Yet rather than lose heart, they have faced the pandemic and fought back, supporting their customers, and proving their steadfastness, adaptability and innovative thinking.

“I am so pleased that MTA UK & Ireland were named Tourist Board of the Year 2021 at the TTG Travel Industry Awards this week. The team have worked hard with our trade partners and travel agents throughout the past 18 months to train them up on Malta, Gozo and Comino and what we have to offer their clients. Our work with our trade partners despite the difficult situation was ongoing, robust and agile and the team have overcome many hurdles to ensure our relationships stay strong and have endured the hard times. I could not be prouder that their hard work has been recognised and want to thank them for their ongoing dedication to promoting our beautiful islands,” Tolene Van Der Merwe, Director of the MTA UK Office stated.

“Having the Malta Tourism Authority receiving such an important award is of sterling news for the hospitality industry. Considering the challenges of kickstarting a tourism industry that was hit by the worst crisis in history, it can be said that tourism traffic to the Maltese Islands progressively improved week after week and numbers are growing still even though the traditional peak of summer has now passed. In the light of this encouraging results, I would like to congratulate MTA’s Director in the UK and her hardworking team for doing their part in strengthening Malta’s touristic prospects in the UK market. The perseverance and commitment displayed in the past months is a pure showcase of how the Malta Tourism Authority is turning challenges into new opportunities for the years to come,” remarked Minister for Tourism and Consumer Protection Clayton Bartolo.

“We are extremely proud of the UK market team in London and in Malta who have once again proven to share the same resilience, determination and work ethic which has become somewhat synonymous with the Maltese people, even more so during the COVID-19 pandemic. The two teams have worked hard to keep Malta and Gozo on top of mind with the UK trade and public throughout the pandemic to make the recovery phase as fast as possible. It is these qualities that have made our UK office shine through once again during this year’s Travel Industry Awards. We look forward to continuing our work in the United Kingdom, which is Malta’s biggest market after the positive start that we have had, despite all the challenges,” Carlo Micallef, Deputy CEO and Chief Marketing Officer of the MTA stated.

Article credits: https://www.mta.com.mt/en/news-details/325
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