How to get around, where to find groceries, and the inside scoop on studying medicine at Queen Mary, Malta Campus
Surrounded by sparkling waters, Queen Mary, Malta Campus is a top choice for those who like a spot of sunshine with their medical studies. This petite island is a friendly place to live. There are more than 40 academic institutions on the islands. Malta’s student bodies (The Malta Students Association, Gozo Society) offer a wealth of activities from touch rugby and netball, as well as the Afro-Caribbean, Asian and Psychic Societies.
Malta in considered a safe place to live for locals and students and the cost of living here is low in comparison with other European countries. Students can get around using the island-wide bus network and the Gozo ferry, which drives a fast route to Malta and back throughout the day – air travel to and from the country is straightforward.
Enjoying year-round sun and surrounded by the sparkling Mediterranean, Malta is a place where swimmers should always be in your daypack. Much the same as the UK, summer is in July and August, when the thermostat can rise high. December is the coolest month, but the temperature rarely dips below 10 degrees Celsius.
Applying for a tallinja card means you’ll be able to get the bus for free. The 25-minute ferry service between Malta and Gozo runs almost 24 hours a day, with a reduced service from midnight to 5am. There is also a daily fast-ferry service between Mgarr in Gozo and Valetta, further down the Maltese coast.
‘Taxi!’ Yes, cabs are available on the islands. They are more expensive than buses, so it’s worth pre-booking your ride. The most cost-effective way of cabbing in Malta is to download a local cab app, like Bolt or eCabs, and get a preview of the fee. Other online companies offer taxi services with set rates, and you can also use the airport and bus station cab ranks, paying for your fare at a kiosk to ensure an official rate.
The Maltese currency is the euro. As a rule of thumb, banks are open from Monday to Friday until early afternoon, and 12 noon on Saturday. There are plenty of ATMs around Malta and Gozo. Remember, it is cheaper to use debit (not credit) cards for withdrawals. ATM charges depend on your own bank account and the ATM you withdraw from. Many are free.
Those planning to buy food in bulk or looking for domestic goods will find several major supermarkets across both Malta and Gozo. For anyone wishing to sample local produce between medical lectures, visiting a local food market – often set up in town squares – is a great alternative. Several Maltese farmer’s markets are in operation, the biggest of which is Ta’Qali in the centre of the island. Taking place twice a week, it sells tasty fresh produce and quirky local crafts.
6 Coffee culture
As with most destinations, Malta has an array of cafés, some of them expensive and some very reasonable, often dependent on location. Expect to pay €2 or €3 for a cappuccino at a standard coffee shop. Several big international chains have branches across the islands, alongside the smaller boutique artisanal tea rooms, and some cafés offer Wi-Fi. Take a laptop and enjoy Malta’s delicious pastizzi with that latte.
The Queen Mary, Malta Campus is in Victoria, the capital of Gozo. Many students choose to live in Victoria so they can be closer to their studies. However, Gozo is a small island with 14 different villages each to choose from. Make sure to research online to find local transport links. You can also use our Unibuddy service to find out more about Gozo.