Foreign Office Advice
The Foreign Office has issued Advice for fans travelling to Malta for the Birkirkara v West Ham United football game on 23 July 2015 here.
IntroductionWest Ham United would like to thank the Club’s loyal supporters for following the team to Malta for the UEFA Europa League second qualifying round second leg tie with Birkirkara FC.
The Club is rightly proud of its fans and would ask that you uphold the Hammers’ reputation by respecting local customs, amenities and cultures.
Fixture informationBirkirkara FC v West Ham United
UEFA Europa League second qualifying round second leg, Ta’ Qali National Stadium, Ta’ Qali, Mdina, Malta, Thursday 23 July 2015, 8.45pm CET (7.45pm BST).
The Ta’ Qali National Stadium, is situated in Ta’ Qali, near the historic city of Mdina, near to the geographical centre of the island of Malta.
The stadium was built on the site of a military airfield that played a huge role in defending the island during the length siege during the Second World Ward. Ta’ Qali is owned by the Government of Malta and operated by the Maltese Football Association.
Ta’ Qali has an all-seated capacity of 17,797 fans, a grass pitch and has hosted hundreds of senior international matches since opening in 1981, and is also the home stadium of Maltese clubs Pieta Hotspurs, Luqa St Andrew’s, Zurrieq, Balzan, Sliema Wanderrs, Msida Saint-Joseph, Gzira United and Mqabba.
The stadium is accessible by road and West Ham United supporters arriving by taxi should head for the Millennium Stand, which holds 4,700 supporters and enter through one of the eight turnstiles.
On entering the stadium, fans will be ticket checked and be searched by security staff for any prohibited items. Seating is unreserved.
Flags and banners are welcome, but not those on sticks, but may be checked prior to entry. Please bear in mind that flags of an overtly political, sectarian or religious nature will not be permitted and may be confiscated.
West Ham United stewards will be travelling to Malta and will be present at the stadium to assist supporters.
Toilet and catering facilities will be available inside the stadium. However, UEFA regulations stipulate that alcohol will NOT be on sale inside the stadium.
Any fans without tickets will NOT be granted access and will be removed from the stadium area.
Fans who misbehave will be arrested and prosecuted the following day.
Getting to MaltaThe Club is not arranging any official travel to Malta.
Sitting as it does, in the Mediterranean Sea, flying is by far the quickest and easiest route to Malta. However, the sheer number of tickets available to West Ham United supporters means that prices have gone up rapidly since the two clubs reached the second qualifying round.
A host of airlines offer direct and indirect flight routes between London and Malta’s Luqa International Airport, but you are likely to pay at least £300 return per person, at time of writing. Even then, you are likely to have to make a lengthy detour via an airport on the European mainland.
MaltaMalta is a popular holiday destination and has numerous bars, restaurants and nightclubs which are used to catering for British tourists. Among the areas with facilities which West Ham United fans might enjoy are nightclub capital Paceville and St Julian’s, where there are bars and clubs in abundance.
For those who would like to follow more traditional cultural pursuits, Malta and its neighbouring island of Gozo are blessed with dozens of interesting and historic attractions.
The capital city, Valetta, is situated in the south east of the island and contains buildings from the 16th century onwards. It is officially recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, with St. John’s Co-Cathedral being considered the No1 tourist attraction on Malta.
If you have the time, a cruise around the Grand Harbour is not to be missed, as it gives you a unique view and perspective of the island’s fortifications, which were built to protect Malta’s historic Three Cities of Vittoriosa, Senglea and Cospicua from invasion.
Away from the water, the 4,000-year-old walled city of Mdina is traffic-free, home to Malta’s historic noble families and known as the Silent City.
The official languages of Malta are Maltese and English.
The currency of Malta is the Euro.
Malta is on Central European Time (CET), one hour ahead of British Summer Time (BST).
Crime against tourists is rare although robberies, handbag snatching, pick-pocketing and theft from parked cars can occur. Safeguard passports, money and other valuables. Be vigilant when exchanging money and using ATMs, and avoid carrying large amounts of cash. Use the hotel’s own safe if possible. There is a low threat from terrorism.
You can drive in Malta using your UK driving licence. Take care while driving as some roads are in poor condition. Keep to the speed limit. The FCO advises that local standards of driving are poor.
The white taxi service can pick up passengers from anywhere, except bus-stops.
Taxi services from the Malta International Airport to all localities in Malta are based on a fixed tariff. For more information click here.
Supporters are advised to use pre-booked taxis to travel to and from the game, as the last bus is due to depart before the final whistle.
You are advised that it is always better to enquire and agree on a fare before you enter a taxi.
You may telephone the Emergency Services on the following number:
112 – General Emergencies
Passports or copies of your passport should be carried with you at all times for identification purposes if required by the authorities.
British High Commission Contact Details
British High Commission Malta, Whitehall Mansions, Ta’ Xbiex Seafront, Ta’ Xbiex, Malta, XBX 1026, Malta
Email – [email protected]
Telephone – (+356) 2323 0000
Fax – (+356) 2323 2234
For further FCO advice regarding a visit to Malta, please click here or here for further information around the match itself.