Nothing can deflate the feeling of landing at your vacation destination and feeling lost. What do the words say? Why doesn't your GPS work? Does data really roam? So, let's talk about travel in Rome - getting to and from the airport, the airports themselves, and whether you're better off using public transport or booking a transfer!
Travel in Rome - which airport?
Rome has two airports: Leonardo da Vinci International Airport and Giovan Battista Pastine International Airport. So, depending on where you're flying from, you'll likely end up in one or the other.
Travel in Rome - how far away is each airport from the city?
The good news is that both airports are equidistant to the city center, each taking around 30-35 minutes by car.
Travel options in to Rome from the airport
Before we talk about transfers, which may be your best option as they take all the stress out of your arrival, let's explore alternatives first.
Hire a car
If you're planning on doing your own driving throughout your vacation, then hiring a car might be your best bet. Both Leonardo da Vinci International Airport and Giovan Battista Pastine International Airport have numerous rental companies based within walking distance.
If you're landing at Leonardo da Vinci International Airport, you could rent a vehicle from Hertz, Enterprise, or Europcar, among others.
Or, if you're landing in Giovan Battista Pastine International Airport, you could try Firefly, LEASYS, or Thrifty. Prices differ depending on the vehicle you want and the length of time you want it, so it's best you do your own price comparison. That way, you can get the best deal for you!
If you're only staying in Rome for a short period and your baggage is manageable, then you might consider taking public transport to the city center. Both airports have decent connections, so it's more than doable!
Public transport from Giovan Battista Pastine International Airport
You have two options here.
The first is a relatively simple shuttle bus, which will set you back €6, and takes around 35 minutes to get into the city center.
The second is via train. From the airport, get the Airlink shuttle to Stazione FS di Ciampino, and then a train to Roma Termini - Rome's central train station. This will take 35 minutes and will set you back €2.70.
Public transport from Leonardo da Vinci International Airport
Again, you have two options to choose from.
The first is another shuttle bus. It's slightly more expensive at €7 and takes around 35 minutes non-stop to the center of Rome.
Similarly again, your other option is a train. You can get it straight out of Leonardo da Vinci International Airport; it takes 32 minutes and costs around €3.
And now, let's talk about transfers.
Travel in Rome - why you should book a transfer from the airport
As a stranger in a strange land, it couldn't hurt to get some know-how from the locals. And that's what you'll get in spades if you book an airport transfer. Cab drivers will be able to provide you with local tips and tricks with a vacation twist, so be sure to strike up a conversation and see what tasty gossip nuggets you can mine.
Besides, you may have already started celebrating your vacation on the plane, so leaving the driving up to someone else might be the best - and legal - course of action!
Suppose you're traveling to a city that doesn't use English as a second language. In that case, it can be difficult to articulate directions, read bus and train timetables, or understand what stops and connections you need to make on any given journey. And, let's be honest, it's the last thing you want to worry about when arriving at your vacation destination! With a transfer, you've already booked the trip, and your driver will know exactly where to take you.
Plus, you needn't worry about being overcharged by a sly driver looking to make a quick buck off of a clueless tourist. Unfortunately, it's one of the most common issues you'll run into in Rome, but with a prepaid transfer, there's no need to negotiate!
Travel in Rome - types of transfer vehicles from Leonardo da Vinci International Airport
In a group, a minibus is your best bet. They can sit up to 7 people depending on your choice of vehicle, and the baggage area will be yours to own! As it's a private vehicle, you won't have to worry about any other stops on your journey, and this halves the travel time to 35 minutes. Price-wise, you're looking at anything from €30-100 per head, so it's worth researching which works best for you.
The most stylish choice on this list, a private car is also the most expensive. Like the minibus, your trip to Rome will take around 35 minutes. Unlike the minibus, prices range from €60-400 per person, depending on your vehicle type. That's a lot of dough, but if you've got it, why not flaunt it? Oh, and it's a car, so it can only seat 1-3 people.
Travel in Rome - types of transfer vehicles from Giovan Battista Pastine International Airport
Seating 1-7 people, a minibus will set you back anything from €80-280 per person, and takes around 32 minutes.
A private car from Giovan Battista Pastine International Airport will take around 32 minutes, can seat 1-3 passengers, and will cost anywhere from €60-450
And that's our guide to transfers and travel from the airport in to Rome! Need some vacation inspiration? Check out Go City. With us, you can see all of Rome's best bits when and how you want.