Illegal scooting? How to Know If You’re Breaking the Law


As environmental consciousness increases from generation to generation, younger people are more eager than ever before to embrace new modes of transport (and thumbs up to that).

Electric scooters (or e-scooters) are efficient, trendy, and have been popping up all over Europe and Malta. Despite this, the number of traffic incidents related to these scooters made us here at Gadgets decide to take a look at the legal status of this new micromobility.

In places with limited parking like Sliema and Valletta, e-scooters have become a great alternative to avoiding and reducing congestion. Transport Malta released Guidelines in 2019 on the use of e-scooters, highlighting a number of new regulations which must be abided by.

What Transport Malta says:

  1. E-scooters must be insured, as well as registered and licensed with Transport Malta 🛴
  2. The annual license will cost users €25, along with a registration fee of €11.65 🤑
  3. Drivers must be 18 years of age or older, and must possess a driving license 🔟+8️⃣➕
  4. Adequate lighting must be attached to the scooter, consisting of a headlamp and a tail lamp 💡
  5. High visibility vests must be worn at all times, subject to fines 🦺
  6. E-scooters cannot be used on arterial or distributor roads, as well as inside tunnels or underpasses. Fines of €200 and €500 respectively will apply 💰
  7. The maximum speed allowed is 10km/hour in pedestrian zones and 20km/hour on other roads. Speeding results in a fine which counts towards your points! ✋🏼
  8. Parking in public places shall only be allowed in designated areas. Parking in other areas will result in a fine 💸

In addition to these rules, the Guidelines document also includes a list of all the streets and roads where the e-scooters cannot be used, based on each and every locality.

Not everything that glitters is gold

Despite these strides forward, critics of the Guidelines believe that these excessively strenuous regulations will discourage people from the use of e-scooters. Both Alternattiva Demokratika and Bicycle Advocacy Groups believe that the measures are draconian and ill-advised, pointing out that for the same amount of red tape, it makes more sense to purchase a motorcycle.

What do you think? Should such harsh regulations be imposed on a new and environmentally friendly modes of transport?