How to Get from Malta Airport to Sliema

Malta Airport (MLA)Airport TransfersAirport to Sliema

Transit Options from Malta Airport to Sliema

Sliema is a number one Malta destination as it offers numerous eateries and cafés as well as a large shopping scene. Nevertheless, if you want a direct ride from Malta Airport to Sliema, you’ll have to choose among the comfortable airport taxis, the lavish but slightly more expensive private airport transfers, or the official airport shuttles. Alternatively, public buses are a much cheaper option. Still, you won’t find a direct public bus from Malta Airport to Sliema. Last but not least, airport car rentals are highly appreciated by travelers who want to explore Malta at their own pace.


OptionsPrice (€)Price ($)Duration
Taxi2021.5020 min
Bus22.1455 min
Shuttle77.5031 min

Malta Airport to Sliema by Taxi

Malta airport taxis are widely used by travelers who want to travel from Malta Airport to Sliema in comfort, families, or passengers traveling with heavy luggage. The taxis of the Taxi Licensed Association -the taxi company authorized by Transport of Malta- are white, and their roof Taxi sign is written in black letters while bearing a black tag on their front doors indicating their registration number. Besides the white taxis, black cabs also circulate around Malta. These are taxi vehicles belonging to private companies’ fleets. You can reserve a black cab only online or through the relevant app. Thus, only white taxis are available at the MLA taxi rank outside the Arrival area, at the terminal’s Ground floor.

Malta airport taxis are metered but also provide set-priced services. Hence, when caught from a taxi booth’s location, Malta taxis offer fixed fares. Expectantly, Malta International Airport houses a taxi booth at the Welcomers’ hall (on the Ground floor). Thus, taxi rides from Malta Airport to Sliema come with fixed rates. Still, admin and holiday fees (on December 25th or January 1st) may apply. Therefore, once you retrieve your luggage, you’ll head to the taxi booth to buy a ticket for the ride from Malta Airport to Sliema. The cost of the ride should be 20€/21.50$, and the duration of the journey around 20 minutes. You can pay for your ticket in cash or via a credit/debit card. As far as tipping is concerned, it’s optional.

Our Tip: Please note that you can also book your taxi through the Malta Taxi app.

Malta Airport to Sliema by Bus

Although they are a cheap transit option for the ride from Malta Airport to Sliema, public buses don’t travel directly from MLA to the beautiful Maltese city. Thus, you’ll have to take the Express Bus X4 to Valletta and hop on Buses 13, 14, or 16 heading to Sliema. Your ride from MLA Airport to Valletta will last around 25 minutes (X4 runs from 09:12 am to 10:39 pm on weekdays and from around 05:50 am to 10:40 pm on weekends on a 40-minute frequency), whereas the trip to Sliema will add another 20 minutes to the total traveling duration. Overall, you should expect a 55-minute journey to your final destination.

The airport’s bus stop lies right across the road from MLA Departures. However, you should keep in mind that Bus X4 travels to Valletta but also to Birzebbuga. Therefore, you should be careful so as to catch the bus heading to the right direction.

Tickets and Fares for the Ride from Malta Airport to Sliema

If you aren’t planning on using public transit during your stay (actually Malta buses, as the island doesn’t have a railway network),  you should get your ticket from the driver inside the bus. Cash payments (in small change) are recommended, although you can use your bank cards as well. Nevertheless, cash tickets allow free bus rides within a 2-hour time interval from the first validation. Thus, if you pay in cash, your ride from Malta Airport to Sliema will cost 2€/2.14$, whereas if you use your credit card, you’ll have to pay an extra 2€/2.14$ for the Bus 13, 14. or 16 to Sliema. Hence, your ride will be priced at 4€/4.28$ in total.

On the other hand, Tallinja Cards are ideal if buses are going to be your means of transit during your stay in Malta. You can choose among the following types of Tallinja Cards:

  • the Explore Card: Costing 21€/22.50$ for adults and 15€/16.10$ for children up to 10 years of age, Explore Cards allow free bus rides for 7 days (yet not on Tallinja Direct Routes). Moreover, they offer a discount on the entrance fees of the National Aquarium.
  • the Explore Flex Card: It is a rechargeable, non-personalized card that allows you to pay as you go at lower fares. Furthermore, you can load it with numerous packages that provide free bus journeys, complimentary rides with the Hop On Hop Off Bus, etc. Explore Flex Cards can also be used at Valletta Ferry. They cost 6€/6.40$. Still, you can use that fare to pay for upcoming rides.
  • the 12 Single Day Journey Card: That type of card can be used by only one passenger either for 12 journeys (via Tallinja Direct Routes as well) during the day or 6 night rides. It costs 15€/16.10$.

The selling points of tickets and Tallija cards at Malta International Airport are several. Hence, you can buy your tickets or cards from the Malta Public Transport Information and Sales Office. It is to be found at the Welcomers’ hall, operating from 08:00 am to 07:30 pm. Moreover, you’ll find automatic ticket machines next to the bus stop and outside the Sales Office. Finally, tickets and cards are available at the WHSmith Outlet, which lies at the Welcomers’ hall and is open from 10:00 am to 07:00 pm.

Our Tip: The Express Bus X2 also heads to Sliema, yet on its way back to the airport. Thus, you’ll have to catch it, travel to its terminus in St. Julian’s, stay on the bus waiting to begin its journey back to MLA and disembark on Sliema. The journey may not require a change of line but is equally time-consuming. The same goes for Tallinja Direct Route 2 which stops at Sliema on its way back to the airport. TD2 is more expensive than public buses costing 3€/3.20$ or 2 journey tickets with the 12-Journey Card.

Malta Airport to Sliema by Shuttle

You can also opt for a ride with the shuttles of the official airport shuttle company (Malta Transfer). The accessible and equipped-with-luggage-racks shuttle vehicles link Malta Airport to Sliema, departing from the Coach Car Park (lying next to the terminal building). However, you should bear in mind that there is a luggage limit. Thus, each passenger can carry one piece of luggage and one hand luggage. You can purchase your tickets from the Malta Transfer Desks. They are located at the baggage claim zone. Alternatively, you can buy them online or download the company’s app. The price of a single ticket from Malta Airport to Sliema is 7€/7.50$. However, you should expect lower fares if you book more than one ticket. In any case, the shuttle ride to Sliema should last around 31 minutes.

Car Rental from Malta Airport to Sliema

A Malta airport car rental is a convenient way to travel from Malta Airport to Sliema and facilitates the exploring of the island. That’s the main reason why MLA passengers seem to widely choose a rental car for their airport journey. Expectantly, Malta International Airport houses a wide variety of car hire companies, which in turn offer a large number of car models and vehicle types. Still, if you want to rent a car at Malta Airport, it is advisable to opt for an early reservation. Verily, in-advance bookings almost always come with lower rates and more available vehicles.

In general terms, you should expect a 20-minute ride from Malta Airport to Sliema, depending on the traffic conditions and the exact location of your destination. As far as parking your Malta rental car is concerned, you’ll find various parking lots, whereas street parking is possible, yet for a fee. Please remember that green spaces are dedicated to residents, white ones are for everyone, and blue spots come with time limits.

Private Airport Transfers from Malta Airport to Sliema

Why waste your precious time buying a ticket for a Malta taxi and heading to the taxi rank or traveling via bus when you can book a comfortable and luxurious private airport transfer? Various private airport transfer agencies are present at MLA Airport, providing top-rated services. Verily, they offer welcome services at the Welcomers’ hall, direct and lavish rides, as well as many additional products. Since they aim at personalized traveling experiences, private airport transfers are regarded as the ultimate transit alternative from Malta Airport to Sliema.


How many kilometers from Malta Airport to Sliema?

The distance between Malta Airport and Sliema is fairly short. Verily, MLA lies just 10km/6.2 miles from Sliema. Thus, a car or taxi ride lasts around 20 minutes, whereas shuttles need 31 minutes to reach their destination, and public buses get to Sliema after a 55-minute journey (including a change of line).

How to get from Malta Airport to Sliema?

You can catch an airport taxi, book a private airport transfer, or reserve a rental car for your ride from Malta Airport to Sliema. On the other hand, if you want to benefit from the most affordable options, you should opt for a bus ride or settle on a shuttle journey.

How much is a taxi from Malta Airport to Sliema?

Airport taxis from Malta Airport to Sliema come with set prices. Thus, no matter the time of the day or the road congestion, you should expect to pay 20€/21.50$ for your taxi ride. Still, admin fees may also be added to that fare.

Is there a bus from Malta Airport to Sliema?

Pubic buses link Malta Airport to Sliema. Still, they don’t provide direct connections. Thus, you’ll have to catch Bus X4, travel to Valletta, and hop on Buses 13, 14, or 16 to Sliema. Alternatively, airport shuttles travel from MLA Airport to Sliema in 31 minutes. Still, they are pricier than public buses.