Television in Malta
Get to grips with TV standards, understand where and how to pay the radio and TV licence fees, and find out what's available to the TV viewer in Malta...
The television standard in use in Malta is DVB-T. Since 1 November 2011, all free-to-air Maltese TV stations transmit in digital format only.
Most countries in the world have either switched over, are switching over, or plan to switch over from analogue TV broadcasting to digital TV broadcasting. Before the advent of digital broadcasting, the main three standards were:
- NTSC: the USA, Canada, Japan
- PAL: most of Western Europe, Australia, southern Africa
- SECAM: Eastern Europe and France
Today, the main digital standards are:
- DVB-T: most of the world, including Europe, southern Africa, Australia and southern Asia
- ATSC: the USA, Canada, Mexico and South Korea
- ISDB-T: most of South America
- DTMB: China
To use an analogue television in Malta, a UHF aerial and a digital decoder (a set-top box), or a digital TV set is required. It should be noted that digital set-top boxes only work within one set of standards, so an analogue TV set brought into another region may still not work with a set-top box.
The TV licence fee in Malta was abolished in 2012.
Television Channels in Malta
There are six main free-to-air TV channels in Malta:
Television Malta (TVM) is the state-owned public service broadcaster. It is funded through government grants and commercial advertising and broadcasts a combination of news, sport, and entertainment. Most programmes are in Maltese, but the channel gets programmes from international sources, such as UK broadcasters BBC or ITV, which are transmitted in English.
TVM's second television channel TVM2 started broadcasting in October 2011, and TVM HD in March 2012. Find out more about these channels from the TVM website (in Maltese).
One TV started broadcasting in 1994. It broadcasts a selection of informative, educational and entertaining programmes intended to have a universal appeal.
NET Television (website in Maltese) is a Maltese-language broadcaster, owned and operated by the country's Nationalist Party.
Smash TV was the first Maltese TV channel to broadcast 24 hours a day, in stereo, and later digital. It broadcasts a mix of Maltese- and English-language programmes.
Favourite Channel is a commercial TV station broadcasting a mix of Maltese- and English-language programmes.
Digital Subscription Channels
In order to sign up for GO, visit on of the company's retail outlets or authorised retailers on both Malta and Gozo, or dial 8007 2121 (free in Malta).
- Find further information about the GO packages available
Bills can be paid by direct debit, at a GO outlet, by post, online or at a Malta Pay Kiosk.
To subscribe to Melita, go to one of the company's retail outlets or authorised retailers or dial 2727 0270.
Bills can be paid by direct debit, at a Melita outlet, by post, online or via mobile phone.
Satellite reception is available to receive other European TV networks.
- Malta Communications Authority has information about the Digital Switchover