Do you need to know how to get to the city center and moving around?
Rome boasts 2 international airports, Rome Fiumicino and Rome Ciampino. Even though they are quite far from the city center, it is arguably easy to get to Rome as they are well connected by several means of transport.
Rome Fiumicino airport, also known as Leonardo da Vinci airport, is the main hub of the city, and it’s located about 30 km (approximately 18 miles) from the center of Rome. It depends on the means of transport and time of day, but usually it takes from 30 minutes to 1 hour to reach the city center.
Rome Ciampino airport, also known as Giovan Battista Pastine airport, is located around 15 km south of the city center and mostly served by the low cost companies to/from the main european cities. So as for Rome Fiumicino airport, it usually takes around 35 minutes to 1 hour to reach the city center.
How to get the city center from Rome Fiumicino
1) Fiumicino airport trains
Catching the train is the easiest and fastest way to reach the city center. There are actually two trains: one, called Leonardo express, is an express that goes directly from/to the central Termini railway station; the other one is a regional commuter train calling at several railway stations including St. Peter Station, Trastevere Station, Rome Ostiense and Rome Tiburtina (it doesn’t stop at Roma Termini).
- Leonardo express: it takes around 30 minutes to reach Termini Station (Rome’s main train station and the only place in the city where Metro lines A and B cross each other) and it runs every 15 minutes. The tickets cost €14 per person but children under 4 are free, and one child aged 4-12 is free with each paying adult. The first train from Fiumicino airport is at 5.57 am, the last at 11.23 pm whereas the first from Rome Termini is at 5.20 am, the last 10.35 pm. Once in Termini, you can catch the metro (both lines A – B) or the local buses from the square in front of the station.
- Regional commuter train: it costs €8 and leaves every 15 minutes (except on Sundays and late at night when it runs every 30 minutes). The first train leaves Fiumicino airport at 5:57 am and the last one departs at 11:27 pm. The trip from the airport to Stazione Trastevere takes just under 30 minutes. The first train from Fiumicino airport is at 5.57 am, the last at 10.42 pm whereas the first from Rome Tiburtina is at 5.01 am and the last at 10.01 pm. If you plan on using the train to reach the metro, get off at Rome Ostiense station and follow the signs to Piramide metro stop (5 minute walk- B line, 2 stops to Colosseum).
Where to buy the ticket
There are no reserved seats and the tickets can either be purchased online on the official website of Trenitalia or at the ticket machines and ticket office at Fiumicino airport train station (5 minutes walk from Terminal 3 – just follow the sign at the arrival floor).
2) Fiumicino airport buses
There are several private bus companies that depart just out of the arrival at Terminal 3. The buses connect the airport with Rome Termini railway station (the alighting point is Via Marsala, 5 minutes walk from the train station), and some of those companies do an interim stop (near Vatican city or Rome Ostiense). The ride takes 1 hour and it costs around 6 euro (return ticket around 9 euro). Ticket can be purchased next to the alighting point. The buses are air-conditioned coaches, with the luggage stored underneath and depart just outside the arrival at Terminal 3. Once of the most known bus company is Terravision (direct bus to Termini) that runs from 5.35 am to 11 pm, whereas from Termini it runs from 4.40 am to 9.50 pm with frequency throughout the day at broadly 45 minutes intervals. On-line fares purchased in advance are usually cheaper than buying on the day.
3) Fiumicino airport taxi
It’s the more comfortable and fast mean of transport to directly reach your accommodation. The duration of your ride depends on the traffic (from 5pm to 7.30 pm could be very intense), anyway getting to the city center usually takes around 1 hour. There is a set cost of a taxi to/from Rome Fiumicino airport (48 Euros for up to 4 passengers). The taxi lines is just out of the arrival at Terminal 3. It’s common to bump into ‘’unofficial’’ taxi drivers offering rides to the city center inside the Terminal 3 at the arrival, but skip them and just catch the official one. If you prefer, you can also use the app MyTaxi (you can use it in many cities worldwide). There is a MyTaxi waiting area near Terminal 1 where your assigned driver will pick you up.
4) Fiumicino Airport private/shared transfers
If you don’t want to catch the public transportation, you can also use private transfer. It is a good service to directly reach your accommodation above all if you are a group (rates are pretty much the same of a taxi). We can suggest you to use Welcome pickups or Kiwitaxi. It is a pre-paid service and the driver will wait for you inside the terminal with a sign that has your name. A shuttle bus transfer normally operates in an 8 seat van.
Alternatively you can easily purchase your private or shared transfer from Fiumicino airport to your Hotel using one of the web platforms like viator or getyourguide. They offer different good deals and the price for a shared ride start from 22US dollars.
How to get the city center from Rome Ciampino airport
1) Rome Ciampino airport trains
As this airport has no direct rail link, you have to reach first Ciampino railway station by bus. Trenitalia offers a service called Ciampino airlink (a combined service bus + train) that directly connect the airport to the train station in only 10 minutes. Here you’ll take your train to the main hub of Rome Termini. The buses depart in the square next to the airport and the combined ticket from/to Rome termini costs 2.70 euros. Check the official website of Trenitalia for schedule and purchasing.
2) Ciampino airport buses
Once out of the terminal, on your left, you’ll see the alighting point of the buses that directly connect Rome Ciampino airport with Termini Railway station (alighting point in via Marsala). So as for Fiumicino airport, the most known company is Terravision.
3) Ciampino airport taxi
The taxi to the city center has a fixed fare of 30 euro (for up to 4 passengers). Watch out for ”unofficial taxies ” and just use the official one that are white car and can be recognized by the sign “Taxi” on the top and by the identifying license number on the doors, on the back and inside the car. Above all reject anybody who approaches you offering a taxi or private car transport in the terminal area.
4) Ciampino Airport private/shared transfers
You can also use private transfer to reach your accommodation in Rome. We can suggest you to use Welcome pickups or Kiwitaxi, a pre-paid service and the driver will wait for you inside the terminal with a sign that has your name. Anyway, the easiest way is to purchase your private or shared transfer with one of the web platforms viator or getyourguide.
Metro and buses
Unfortunately Rome has just 3 metro lines, A and B and C. Lines A and B cross each other at Rome Termini railways station, the main public transport hub in Rome. Line C is a new line gradually being opened in stages and it usually not used by tourists. The metro is not the best mean of transport since it has a limited coverage of the centre of Rome. Anyway, some of the major attraction like Colosseum/Roman Forum (line A), Spain square (line B) and St. Peter square (line A) are served.
The public buses/tram are the best mean of transport since they connect in a good way the whole city of Rome. They run frequently from about 5.30 am to midnight daily and are supplemented by night services that run all night along the main routes. The major bus terminal is in Piazza dei Cinquecento square facing Termini railway station. All bus stops have a large sign indicating the number of the buses, the routes at the major stops. The only flaw is that they are always very crowded, especially during peak hours, and if you hope to get a seat…forget it.
Where to buy the ticket
You have to purchase your tickets before you board any public transport in Rome. The ticket is valid for Metro, Buses and Tram and can be purchased at the automatic machines at the metro station or in all the newsstands. The ticket for one metro ride (or 100 minute on all buses) costs 1.50 euro, 24 hour ticket valid for unlimited rides on metro and buses costs 7 euro, 48 hour ticket costs 12.50 euro and the 7 days ticket costs 24 euro. Check the official site of the Rome public transports at Atac.roma.it.
We suggest you to use the app for devices “muoversi a Roma” or “moovit” to check the schedule of the public transports and find the best way to reach your destination.
Rome is a big city visited by millions tourist every year. Therefore, as in all the big cities around the world, you can bump into pickpockets when catching the public transports. Watch out for them, they are really smart, and never keep your wallet and documents in the back pockets. Same consideration can be done for backpacks or bags. Keep them in front of you and not behind, being pickpocketed can ruin your vacation!