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November 2006 issue

Contents
News
Travel News
Agency News
Agency Survey
Feedback
Direction
Special Report
Market Report Malta
Market Report Argentina
Course Guide
Spotlight
Destination
Regional Focus
Status

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Sunshine for Malta

Student numbers in Malta this year were up on 2005, according to schools, and a new long-stay visa for English language students also bodes well for the future. Amy Baker reports.

Official figures for English language student intake in Malta in 2005 from the National Statistics Office reveal a rise of 10.8 per cent in student numbers on the previous year, to 61,607 students. Overall, the average length of stay dropped from 2.9 weeks to 2.4 weeks, impacting slightly on overall volume; nevertheless, the Maltese market is in buoyant form and has been improving since last year. "Business has most definitely been up on last summer, students weeks are up by 30 per cent," relates Louiseanne Mercieca at English Language Academy in Sliema.

At Gateway International School of English in San Gwann, David Meadley notes, "Our school is currently enjoying a growth rate of 10 per cent per year", while Corinne Xuereb, Principal of IH Malta – Gozo, which has two schools on the island, comments, "This year we had a better spread through the year than we had last year. We';re up on last summer by 25 per cent."

Most schools seem to be confident that numbers are up on 2005 and the big news in Malta is that with the government agreeing to issue a special visa for students that will be valid for up to one year (see Language Travel Magazine, October 2006, page 6), the industry looks set to reap further benefit next year from long-haul markets where students are keen to stay for longer than 30 days.

Rebecca Brincat at BELS in Gozo comments, "This recent step in the right direction will give EFL schools in Malta and Gozo a welcome break in a season characterised as one that suffered lower numbers from destinations that were good producers of student weeks." She adds, "This new visa for students is the fruit of much lobbying and also recognition of the Maltese government that EFL schools had suffered enough because of unclear visa acquisition guidelines."

In terms of courses, schools tend to report that short-term general English language courses are the most requested, but a handful point to growing demand for the business, exam courses or specialist courses, such as English and diving, that are offered.

"General English is by far the most popular," relates Meadley, "however our business English and conversational English courses are also popular [as has been] English plus diving this summer, mainly due to the high quality of the diving schools we work with." Lisa Audino at Linguatime School of English in Sliema agrees. "Diving courses, business courses and exam preparation courses have seen a significant increase this past year," she says.

English Language Academy has become the first test centre for the new Toefl iBT in Malta and Mercieca reports that this is "fast gaining" in popularity. Meanwhile, Kathleen von Schloss Cremona of Inlingua in Sliema notes rising demand for business courses, executive courses and individual packages.

Currently, Germany is the biggest provider of students, followed by Italy, and this has been the case for some years; Malta is known predominantly for its Western European clientele. This year, however, a number of schools identify certain Eastern European countries as growing markets, as well as Spain in particular. Joe Aquilina at Clubclass Language School in Swieqi highlights Spain, Turkey, Russia and the Czech Republic, while Meadley agrees with the observations about Spanish and Czech students. Brincat notes, "We have seen a sharp rise in Spanish students at BELS this year," while at Sprachcaffe, Greg Burrell, Director of Studies, underlines, "We have seen nice increases in our Bulgarian and Spanish markets."

Agents – as well as word-of-mouth recommendation – seem to remain integral to many schools'; marketing plans and in fact Aquilina puts his business growth in 2006 down to having met more international agents at workshops, as well as having launched a new "teenskool" all-inclusive programme. He says the challenge for the future is to maintain quality, in a market where he claims some operators are using hotels as "unlicensed premises for accommodation and teaching".

With national English language school association, Feltom, adopting higher than ever quality standards for its members to adhere to, this is certainly an aim supported by many in the industry. "Schools need to maintain the progress recorded over the last few years," sums up Mercieca, who adds, "The number of students choosing Malta as a location to learn continues to increase."


Accommodation problem

A new tax on host families caused a problem in the Maltese market this year in that fewer host families were available because families either misunderstood the tax rules or didn';t want to pay possible fees incurred (see Language Travel Magazine, September 2006, page six).

Pia Zammit at Skylark School of English in Msida notes, "The problem is that there aren';t enough host families to go around. We';ve also had a couple of problems with host families that take in too many students – this can happen when they work with more than one school."

John Dimech, President of Feltom, notes that the government is putting the responsibility on schools to inspect families before host family licences are issued. "We feel that the government enforcement is lacking in some ways and the more serious schools are feeling discouraged to have gone through the trouble to conform to the standards when they find out that other [schools] are getting away without respecting the same standards," he says.

Schools are looking for other options for accommodation provision. Greg Burrell at Sprachcaffe notes, "We are planning on adding more residential accommodation next year to make up for the shrinking host family pool." At Inlingua Malta-Gozo, Corinne Xuereb relates that the school has offered to share the new tax burden with families 50/50. With student numbers growing, schools will have to remain innovative in the future to accommodate all their clients.

Contact any advertiser in the this issue now

The following language schools, associations and accommodation providers advertised in the latest edition of Language Travel Magazine. If you would like more information on any of these advertisers, tick the relevant boxes, fill out your details and send.

Name

Company
Country

Telephone

Email


ASSOCIATIONS/
GROUPS
Acpet
Asociación Gallega
       de Escuelas de
       Español - Agaes
Capls - Canadian
      Association of
       Private Language
       Schools
CLC - Canada
       Language Council
Education New
       Zealand
English Australia
English UK
Fedele / Turlingua
Feltom
Ialc
MEI~Relsa
Perth Education City
Quality English

INSURANCE
Student Guard
       Insurance

STUDENT WEBSITES
language-
       programs.net

TOURIST BOARDS
Fedele / Turlingua
Malta Tourism
       Authority

WORK EXPERIENCE/
INTERNSHIPS
Access International
Agaes Spain
Alpha College of
       English
Anglolang Academy
       of English
Aspect
Auckland English
       Academy
Cambridge Academy
       of English
Churchill House
Cork English College
Diálogo Language
       Schools
Eastbourne School
       of English
Eckersley School of
       English
Excel English
English Studio
English UK
Eurasia Institute
Eurocentres
       International
Frances King
Global Village
Global Village
inlingua Malta
International House
       Sevilla - Clic
International Student
       Placement Centre
Kaplan Educational
       Centers
King George
       International
       College
Lake School of
       English
Languages
       International
LSC Language
       Studies Canada
Linguatime
Linguaviva
       International
Modus Language
       Institute
Pacific-Global
       Language Centre
Pacific Language
       Institute
Pacific Language
       Institute
Pan Pacific
       International English
       College Inc.
Phoenix English
       Language Academy
Prolog- International
       House Berlin
Rennert Bilingual
Rotorua English
       Language Academy
Shane Global
       Language Centres
Silc - Séjours
       Linguistiques
       (France)
St Giles Colleges
Swan Training
       Institute
Tellus Group / Work
       Experience UK
University of
       Western Australia
Vancouver English
       Centre
Vanwest College

WORKSHOPS/EXPOS
Alphe Agent
       Workshops
English Australia
English UK
Ialc
Icef
MEI~Relsa

AUSTRALIA
Acpet
Edith Cowan
       University
English Australia
International Student
       Placement Centre
Kingston
       International
       College
Language Links
Monash University
       English Language
       Centre
Perth Education City
Perth International
       College of English
Phoenix English
       Language Academy
University of
       Western Australia

BRAZIL
Diálogo Language
       Schools
FAAP

CANADA
Access International
Bodwell College
Carleton University
College of New
       Caledonia
Conestoga College
Ecole de Langues -
       Université Laval
English Bay College
English Language
       Training College
       ELTC
Eurocentres
Global Village
       (Australia, Canada,
       USA)
Global Village
       (Australia, Canada,
       USA)
Immersion Baie-des-
       Chaleurs
inlingua Vancouver
Interlangues Ecole
       de Languages
International
       Language Institute
       of Canada - ILI
International
       Language Schools
       of Canada
Intrax English
       Institute
King George
       International
       College
LSC Language
       Studies Canada
Lethbridge
       Community College
Malaspina University
       College
Mandarin House
Modus Language
       Institute
Montreal
       International
       Language
       Centre
Mount Royal College Omnicom School of
       Languages
Pacific Language
       Institute
Pacific Language
       Institute
Pacific-Global
       Language Centre
Pan Pacific
       International English
       College Inc.
Point 3
Saint Mary's
       University
Stewart College of
       Languages
University of Calgary
Vancouver English
       Centre
       (Canada, Mexico)
Vancouver English
       Centre
       (Canada, Mexico)
Vancouver English
       Centre
       (Canada, Mexico)
Vanwest College
YMCA Greater
       Montreal
       International
       Language School

CHINA
Mandarin House

COSTA RICA
Academia
       Latinoamericana
       de Español
Ilisa - Instituto de
       Idiomas Costa Rica
Wayra - Spanish
       School

ECUADOR
Academia de
       Español Mitad del
       Mundo
Academia de
       Español Quito
Quito S.I. Spanish
       Institute

ENGLAND
Anglolang Academy
       of English
Aspect (Australia,
       Canada, England,
       France, Germany,
       Ireland, Malta,
       New Zealand,
       Scotland, South
       Africa, Spain, USA)
Avalon School of
       English
Beet Language
       Centre
Bell International
        (Malta, UK)
Cambridge Academy
       of English
Churchill House
Cicero Languages
       International
Eastbourne School
       of English
Eckersley School of
       English
English Language
       Centre Brighton &
       Hove
English Studio
English UK
Excel English
       Language School
Frances King School
       of English
Ialc
Lake School of
       English
LAL Language and
       Leisure
       (England, Malta,
       South Africa, USA)
Languages Out
       There (England,
       Germany, Ireland,
       Italy, Spain)
Liverpool School of
       English
London School of
       English
Malvern House
Quality English
Queen Ethelburga's
       College
Shane Global
       Language Centres
       (England, New
       Zealand, South
       Africa)
St Giles Colleges
       (Canada, UK, USA)
Study Group
       (Australia, Canada,
       England, France,
       Germany, Ireland,
       Italy, New Zealand,
       South Africa,
       Spain, USA)
Study Group
       (Australia, Canada,
       England, France,
       Germany, Ireland,
       Italy, New Zealand,
       South Africa,
       Spain, USA)
SUL Language
       Schools
Tellus Group
University of Essex -
       ELT Centre
West London
       Business College
Wimbledon School
       of English

FRANCE
Accord
Centre
       Méditerranéen
       d'Etudes
       Françaises
Le Génie des
       Langues
Silc - Séjours
       Linguistiques
       (England, France,
       Spain)
Silc - Séjours
       Linguistiques
       (England, France,
       Spain)

GERMANY
Eurasia Institute
language-
       programs.net
Prolog- International
       House Berlin

IRELAND
Alpha College of
       English
Atlantic Language
       Galway
Cork Language
       Centre International
Dublin City University
       Language
       Services
Dublin School of
       English
Emerald Cultural
       Institute
Galway Cultural
       Institute
High Schools
       International (HSI)
       (Australia, Canada,
       England)
Horner School of
       English
Liffey Linguistics
Linguaviva Centre
MEI~Relsa
Swan Training
       Institute

ITALY
Dilit - International
       House
Linguaviva
       International

MALTA
Britannia College
EC - English
       Language Centres
       (England, Malta,
       South Africa)
Feltom
inlingua Malta
International School
       of English
Linguatime
Malta Tourism
       Authority

MONACO
Home Language
       International
       (Argentina,
       Australia, Austria,
       Brazil, Canada,
       Chile, China, Czech
       Republic, Denmark,
       Egypt, Finland,
       France, Germany,
       Holland, Hungary,
       Ireland, Italy, Japan,
       Malta, NZ, Norway,
       Poland, Portugal,
       Russia, Spain,
       Sweden,
       Switzerland, UK,
       USA, Venezuela)

NEW ZEALAND
Auckland English
       Academy
Education New
       Zealand
Languages
       International
Rotorua English
       Language Academy

POLAND
York School

PORTUGAL
Cial - Centro de
       Línguas
Self Escola de
       Línguas

RUSSIA
Liden & Denz
       Language Centre

SCOTLAND
EAC Language
       Centres and Activity
       Camps (England,
       Ireland, Scotland,
       Wales)

SOUTH AFRICA
Good Hope Studies
Interlink School of
       Languages

SPAIN
Asociación Gallega
       de Escuelas de
       Español - Agaes
Enforex Spanish in
       the Spanish World
Esade-Executive
       Language
Fedele / Turlingua
Hispalengua
International House
       Sevilla - Clic

SWITZERLAND
Academia Sprach-
       und Lernzentrum
EF Language
       Colleges Ltd
       (Australia, Canada,
       China, Ecuador,
       England, France,
       Germany, Ireland,
       Italy, Malta, New
       Zealand, Russia,
       Scotland, Spain,
       USA)
Eurocentres
       International
       (Australia, Canada,
       England, France,
       Germany, Italy,
       Japan, New
       Zealand, Russia,
       Spain, Switzerland,
       USA)

USA
American Language
       Communication
       Center
Inlingua School of
       Languages
Kaplan Educational
       Centers (Canada,
       England, USA)
Rennert Bilingual
University of
       California San Diego
University of
       California Santa
       Barbara
Zoni Language
       Centers


EDUCATION TRAVEL MAGAZINE

AUSTRALIA
Gosford Christian
       School
Queensland Non-
       Government
       Schools Education
       Co-op
St Paul's
       International School
The Armidale School

ENGLAND
Athena College of
       Professional
       Studies
Queen Ethelburga's
       College

USA
St Timothy's School