English in Malta, by the English in Malta, for the English in Malta

Bank accounts in Malta, our guide to banking in Malta

Have you just arrived in Malta and are you looking to open a current account to be able to work on the island, or do you require information about opening a business account?

How to open a bank account in Malta? There are many banks in Malta, some better suited than others for specific situations.

What types of bank accounts can be opened in Malta?

  • Current Account
  • Savings account
  • Business account
  • Deposit account

Why is it necessary to open a bank account in Malta?

There are several reasons that make opening a bank account in Malta worthwhile:

  1. Receiving a salary
  2. Starting an entrepreneurial activity
  3. Participating in the 2012 Retirement Program

How to open a personal bank account?

To open a personal account, you will need to present several documents.

Note: Having a Maltese Identity Card makes it easier to open a bank account in Malta as it shows formality and a long-term desire to settle in Malta.

Essential documents:

  • Maltese ID / Passport or Identity Card
  • Minimum 6-month lease agreement (requirements for this may vary depending on the bank)
  • Completed and signed bank account opening form
  • Supporting documents from your current bank account (bank statements of the last 6 months and letter from your financial advisor stating you have no risk history. This may vary from bank to bank).

Other information / documents you may be asked for:

  • Employment Contract
  • Proof of solvency

In Malta, the British model dominates – you are likely to be asked for “flawless” solvency (no debts) in order to open a bank account.

  • Information on your country of taxation
  • Tax Identification Number

How to open a business bank account?

If you wish to carry out a business activity in Malta, you will need to open a Business Account.

Here are the documents / information you will be asked for:

  • Personal information of all company shareholders and their roles. (ID, rental agreement, etc…)
  • Certificate of possession of a personal account, from your current bank (for all shareholders)
  • As much information as possible about your future business (company number, business plan, market research, KYC, etc.) to show the bank that your project is credible.

To provide all this information in a clear and precise way, you can create what is called a CANVAS Business Model.

  • You will need to provide any additional documentation required by the bank.

In some banks, you will be asked to deposit a minimum amount to open a business bank account.

Bank Fees 

Bank fees are generally divided into 3 parts:

Account maintenance fees

These vary depending on the bank and the conditions of the account. In some cases, there are no maintenance fees.

ATM fees

Making withdrawals from other banks will usually be at your own expense, which is why it is important to choose a bank with either an ATM close to you or a bank heavily represented on the island with many ATMs.

Fees may vary depending on the bank and the ATM – these may be between €2 and €5 per operation.

International fees

International fees may vary depending on the bank chosen, but they are usually quite high. Tariffs charged by so-called brick-and-mortar banks are often a percentage of the money withdrawn, which can reach up to 7%, depending on the bank.

 

Which bank to choose in Malta?

There are many banks in Malta, but we only recommend two of them.

Why? If this is your first time opening an account in Malta, it is best to keep things simple to familiarize yourself with the Maltese banking system.

Here are the two banks in question:

Bank of Valletta

Bank of Valletta (BOV) is the most represented bank in Malta, which will greatly facilitate your withdrawals on the island.

What you can get with a current account at BOV:

A no-fee account, as long as you have no overdraft.

The bank offers several services:

  • Deposit and withdrawal at any time
  • Viewing your account balance on a mobile app
  • Use of a BOV Cashlink Card
  • Making credit or debit requests directly on the Internet

 

Note: If you make a withdrawal from an ATM of a different Maltese bank, you will be charged € 3,50.

For more information on opening a current account with this bank, visit the BOV website.

If you wish to open a business account with Bank of Valletta, several options are available and vary depending on the type of business and your particular needs.

We therefore recommend that you go directly to their dedicated page to see the offers that are best suited to you: BOV Business

HSBC

HSBC is the second bank we recommend, as it is the second largest bank in Malta, and making withdrawals will be easier anywhere on the island.

What does an HSBC Current Account offer?                         

  • Deposits and withdrawals at any time
  • Making payments to HSBC and non-HSBC accounts
  • Free personal internet, mobile and telephone banking services
  • Your salary can be credited to your account (obviously)
  • Use of an HSBC Card

You can find a list of HSBC bank cards directly on their website: HSBC

  • International withdrawal from all HSBC ATMs free of charge
  • Card payments for currencies other than the Euro: 1.75% fees

 

This bank is therefore preferable to BOV for travellers.

If you wish to open a business bank account, you can visit the HSBC website where you will find all necessary information.

Further information: 

There are many other banks in Malta: IIG, Sparkasse Bank, MeDirect Bank…
We have presented you with the most convenient way to open your first bank account. You may wish to open a current account with another bank at a later stage.

GOOD TIP: New online banks. You can also opt for Revolut or N26 services that offer high-quality, instant, and highly intuitive services.

Do you need help managing your finances in Malta? Have a look at our Financial and Accounting guide.