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The Ultimate Guide to Planning Your Dream Trip to Rome

Updated: Dec 30, 2023

Well done to you, my dear traveler. You are finally planning to visit Rome, and will love it. I have been to Rome a couple of times, so I know it pretty well.


This is why, you will find so many tips, hacks and information on what to do in Rome and what to see in Rome, that planning your trip to Rome is going to be super easy.


everything you need to know before visiting rome

In this article, you are going to find all the essential tips to visit Rome.


From how to get to Rome from the airport, how to use public transport, how to move around Rome, practical travel tips to visit Rome, and city tax fee to pay (yes there is a Rome tax fee to pay but it's quite cheap), Rome tipping guide and much more.


Let's start to plan your holiday in Rome.


what to do in rome

Dreaming of your next trip to Rome?

Have questions or feel overwhelmed? You’ve come to the right place. I offer you ideas, inspiration and practical advice on how to turn your next potential holiday into reality.


tips to visit rome

What is the best month to visit Rome?

The best months to visit Rome are any month from October to March. In this way, you will skip all the crowds of tourists, the prices of flights and hotel rates are lower and you can skip the hottest month of the year (Rome can be as hot as 40° degrees/100 F).


tips to visit rome

How many days do I need to visit Rome?


You could have the perfect city break in Rome, but keep in mind that 3 or 4 days are absolutely not enough to properly visit this fantastic city. If you can, try to stay in Rome for at least one whole week.


There are so many things to do in Rome, so many places to see, local food to taste, and much more, that you will wish to stay for one month.


TABLE OF CONTENTS:


Travel Tips: As soon as you book your next adventure, make sure to buy good travel insurance in case you need to “unfortunately” delay, extend, or cancel your trip. I always check VisitorsCoverage for short trips and SafetyWing for trips longer than a month.

tips to visit rome

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Everything You Need to Know Before Visiting Rome

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time zone Rome

What is the Time Zone in Rome?

​Italy is located in the Central European Time Zone, which is one hour ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT +1).


During the summer months, Italy observes daylight-saving time, where the clock is moved forward by one hour, making it two hours ahead of GMT.


In the winter, Italy moves the clock back by one hour to Central European Time. These time changes always occur on the last Saturday of March and the last Saturday of October.


currency rome, italy


What is the Currency in Rome?


The official currency of Italy is the euro, even though the country is still somewhat of a cash-based economy.


You won't be paying cash all of the time, as there are shops and merchants in Italy that are well-equipped to accept card payments – Visa and Mastercard are more common than American Express.


vaccinations Rome

Do I need any Vaccinations to visit Rome?​

You should ask your family doctor before traveling to Italy and ensure that you receive all of the appropriate vaccinations.


Just make sure you’re up to date on recommended vaccinations for your home country and have a look at The Travel Vaccines and Advice here.


voltage and adaptors rome, italy

What are the Voltage and Adaptors in Rome?

The standard voltage is 220-240 volts. Most of the sockets are European plugs of the two round-pin varieties. I recommend you buy a universal travel adaptor.


You will need a voltage converter and plug adaptor in order to use other appliances.


Plan Your Vacation in Rome

Check out all my articles in the "Most Complete Guide of Rome" and get all the information you need to make your next travel a success.


how to get to Rome, italy

How can I get to Rome?


To visit Rome, you can check out flights to Rome that land at Fiumicino Airport Leonardo Da Vinci (FCO) and Ciampino Airport (CIA).


Rome is located in central Italy, so if you plan to visit other cities in this beautiful country before reaching Rome, you have four options to get there:


By Bus: Look at Omio to see prices, time schedule and availabilities.


By Train: The most used website to book train tickets in Italy is Rail Europe, where you will find all the routes available.


By Car: if you fancy stopping and exploring more about this great country, renting a car can be a great option to move freely. Have a look at DiscoverCars and Rentalcars to find the best deals online.


By Bike: f you are dreaming about exploring Italy while driving a beautiful Vespa or any other motorbike, the best website is BikeBookings.



how to go from Rome airport to the city center

How can I go to Rome from the airport?

I think it is always wise to check how to go from the airport to your accommodation. There are always many ways to choose from.


There are shuttle buses that go to the city center, there are train lines, or you can book a private taxi in advance that will take you to your accommodation.


To visit Rome, you can check out flights that land at Fiumicino Airport Leonardo Da Vinci (FCO) and Ciampino Airport (CIA).

how to go from Fiumicino Airport Leonardo da Vinci to Rome


How to go to Rome from Fiumicino Airport Leonardo da Vinci (FCO)?

It is the biggest airport in Rome and also one of the busiest in Europe with primarily intercontinental flights.

By Train

The fastest way to reach the centre of Rome is with the Leonardo Express, the train that connects the airport to Roma Termini station. This train takes 32 minutes from Leonardo da Vinci airport to Roma Termini station and does not make any stops.


It leaves every 15 minutes except in some less busy times when the frequency is every 30 minutes. Check prices and schedule for the Leonardo Train here.


Otherwise, there are other regional trains that connect the airport to Rome city center that cost less, but they take a bit longer to get to Rome and also do some stops on the way.

By Bus

Different companies run from the airport to the city center. The journey takes around 1 hour to get to Rome.

By Taxi

In case you want to get straight to your hotel without having to get to Rome center and take other public transport to reach your accommodation, this is an excellent way to travel. It is more expensive, but if you share it with your travel mate you are going to save a lot of time to start your holiday in the best and most relaxed way.


​I always think booking a private transfer from the airport to the hotel is better. So, you can start your holiday right upon arrival and save time and energy.


HolidayTaxis: it provides airport transfers by airport taxi, group minibus, shuttle, coach or limousine to over 21,000 destinations and resorts in over 150 countries worldwide.

Kiwitaxi: is a site where one can book a transfer to get from or to the airport in 98 countries, between tourist destinations or other locations popular with tourists.

how to go from Rome Ciampino airport to Rome city center

How to go to Rome from Rome Ciampino Airport (CIA)?

This is the second airport in Rome that has mostly low-cost, national, and international flights and it is closer to the city but not so well connected as the Fiumicino one.


But don't worry, I got you covered, and here are all the ways to reach Rome from Rome Ciampino Airport.

Shuttle Bus

Shuttle buses are always a great solution to reach the city center and save money.


There is one shuttle bus every 30 mins that run from the airport to Rome Termini Station and from there you can catch the Metro or a Bus to reach your accommodation.


By Train

There is not a direct train that connects this airport to the city centre.

If you want to get to Rome by train, you have to catch a bus first at the airport (costs only 1 euro and the ride lasts 5 minutes. You can pay for the bus ticket when you get on board) to get to the Ciampino train station.


From the train station, there are regional trains to Rome.

By Taxi

I think this is the best way to avoid changing many types of transport before getting to your accommodation in a city where you have never been and also probably don't speak the language to ask for indications.

Too many times I arrived at a new destination quite tired. After waking up in the middle of the night to go to the airport because my flight were leaving very early (it is usually much cheaper).


So sharing a taxi with my travel mates saved me all the stress to catch multiple kinds of transport to reach our accommodation. It obviously depends on how many travel mates I have and the price of the private transport. Something by splitting the cost between 4 people the final price is not so high.


​I always think is better to book a private transfer from the airport to the hotel. So, you can start your holiday right upon arrival and save your time and energy.


HolidayTaxis: it provides airport transfers by airport taxi, group minibus, shuttle, coach or limousine to over 21,000 destinations and resorts in over 150 countries worldwide.

Kiwitaxi: is a site where one can book a transfer to get from or to the airport in 98 countries, between two tourist destinations or other locations popular with tourists.

I Way: This is a chauffeur website where you can book a private driver to go wherever you want not only from the airport to your accommodation.

Rent a Car

If you like driving like me, you can always rent a car and in this case, I always have a look at my favourite rental car websites and I see where I find the best deals. Have a look at them here:

DiscoverCars: Discover is basically a Skyscanner, but for rental cars. And since you're comparing lots of different companies, you also get to choose from lots of different cars.

Rentalcars.com is an international car rental booking service that is present all over the world.


Tip: I don't recommend you to drive in Rome city centre because the traffic is crazy but if you plan to visit the area around the capital, renting a car can be a great option to move freely.


is there a city tax fee to pay in rome?


Is there a City Fee to Pay to Stay in Rome?


The answer is Yes!


There is a city tax fee to pay while you stay in Rome. This city tax requires you to pay a contribution of 4.00 Euros per person per night for 2 and 3-star hotels, 6.00 Euros per person per night for 4-star hotels and 7.00 Euros per person per night for 5-star hotels.


So keep that in mind if you plan to travel on a budget.


how to move around Rome


How to move Around Rome?


Walking

One of the best ways to visit Rome is by walking.

Once you get to the city centre, almost every vital sight is within walking distance, so bring some comfortable shoes and enjoy this magic city.

By Bus

There are plenty of buses to move around in case you have to get to one place faster.


The Metrebus Rome system offers a wide variety of tickets and passes. BIT € 1.50 for 100 minutes from the first stamping. ROMA 24H € 7.00 valid 24 hours from the first stamping and for an unlimited number of trips in Rome.

By Metro

Rome has probably the cheapest Metro in Europe, one way ticket costs only 1.5 euro. L'Atac offers also 24h tickets for 7 euro, 48h for12.50 euro, 72h for 18 euro or 1 week for 24 euro.

You can purchase tickets at every metro station.


is tap water safe to drink in Rome?

Is tap water and food safe in Italy?


It’s safe to drink water in Italy from taps and also from drinking fountains that you will find, especially in the major cities and parks.


I always carry with me a reusable bottle so I can fill it up anytime I have the chance.

If you are not sure, it’s always safe to ask locals or, in doubt, just drink bottled water.


is safe to eat food in Italy?

Is the food good in Rome?


About food, honestly, Rome has so much to offer that the only problem you will have is that your stomach is not big enough to eat everything you wish.


That's why I always carry with me some magnesium tablets, just in case I overeat because, as my mom always says "I eat with my eyes and not with my mouth".

Unfortunately, bad luck happens everywhere, sometimes is not the food but just our stomach that needs to get used to the new cuisine (and let's be honest, we all eat and drink more than usual when on holiday) take some of these natural remedies below with you in case you will have stomach upset or food poisoning.


natural remedies for travel illness

What are the best natural remedies to take with you when travelling?

  • Milk Thistle: is a traditional herbal medicinal product used to relieve the symptoms associated with occasional over-indulgence in food and drink, such as indigestion and upset stomach. Milk Thistle is a great natural remedy to always have with you when you travel.

Obviously, ask your doctor first if you can take them in case they are not good for you.

  • Charcoal capsules: recent studies prove that charcoal can be a good help in case you eat something that was not good and it can prevent you from having diarrhoea.

  • Probiotics: These are a wonderful help while having food poisoning. Take as soon as you start to have symptoms and also after, for a couple of days at least. My doctor advises me to start taking them some days before my travel, as a prevention, in case I am going to visit a country where water and food can be easily contaminated.


eating and drinking out in Rome

How expensive is eating and drinking out in Rome?

In Rome, you will find a wide variety of food from meat to fish. You won't find only the typical Italian cuisine because every Italian city and region has different typical dishes to try and love.

Prices may vary from bar to restaurant and also from where the place is located. If near a famous tourist spot, prices are always higher.


These are the approximate prices for the most common foods and drinks in Rome:

In Supermarket

Bottle 1.5 L water: around 0.40-0.50 Euro

Beer 0.33 L: around 1.50 Euro

Bottle of Wine: 5-10 Euro

At a Bar:

Coffee-latte: 1.50 Euro

A glass of 0.5 L Beer: around 1.50-2.00 Euro

A bottle of wine: 12-20 Euro

Coke in a Can: Around 2.00-2.50 Euro

A glass of Wine: Around 3.50-6.00 Euro


At a Restaurant:

Restaurant on a budget per person: Around 15 Euro

Restaurant medium-range per person: Around 30-40 Euro

Fine dining Restaurant per person: From 80 Euro


Do you like Wine?


If the answer is Yes!


Rome tipping guide

What is the tipping guide in Rome?


In Italian restaurants a gratuity of 10-20% is often added to the bill, so check that you're not already paying the tip before you add more to your payment.

If not, a tip of 10-15% is encouraged, mostly in tourist places.


The tip should reflect the customer service that you received so it is really up to you to decide how much to give.


Do you want to see everything Rome has to offer and save money at the same time?

cost of travelling rome

Is Rome an expensive city to visit?

Rome is a very famous city so if you are looking to save some money, I advise you to avoid it from June to August when it can be very hot, crowded and more expensive.

Flights can be very cheap from October to April (Once I went from London to Rome and a return ticket cost me 50 £) so have a look at my favourite flights websites that I use to travel to check flights to Italy:

Jetradar and Aviasale: are two travel search engines that allow users to compare airline prices and offers, specializing in low-cost airfare.

In Rome, you can find accommodations for every budget.


The websites that I love the most to find amazing deals are always Booking.com and Agoda!


shopping and souvenirs in Rome


​Shopping and souvenirs in Rome

The options are limitless in Italy, from clothes like leather jackets, shoes, and high street brand clothes are all there waiting for you to take them home and create your following season outfits.

Italy offers many choices of food to buy as souvenirs, from olive oil, liquors like limoncello, cheese, cured meat, dried pasta or spices to recreate the dishes you ate on holiday, at home for your loved ones.

Also handmade ceramic and paintings are a great souvenir idea.


is rome safe for a solo woman traveler?


Is Rome safe for a solo woman traveller?

Italy is pretty safe. During the day with tourists and locals around the streets, the only thing you will have to worry about are pickpockets that unfortunately can be present in every tourist city.

My Roman friends told me that the city centre is quite safe but is better to be always vigilant.

So I advise having with you an antitheft purse or an antitheft backpack, prudence is never enough when you are far from home even in the safest place in the world.​


Overnight I advise a solo woman traveller to keep your eyes open wherever you are because bad things can happen anywhere, anytime to anybody so please safety first.

During my solo travels, I always contacted locals through travel Facebook groups and I have been lucky to meet people that took me around and show me their city so I was feeling pretty safe being out late in the evening because I wasn't alone.


duty free allowance Italy

What is the duty-free allowance from Italy?

If you are travelling from an EU country, there are no limits on the amount or value of goods you want to take home with you if your goods are for personal consumption.

Goods imported for commercial purposes are subject to duty and the following guideline amounts are in place to determine whether this is the case:

  • 800 cigarettes or 1kg of tobacco

  • 10L of spirits over 22% volume, 20L of alcoholic beverages less than 22% volume, 90L of wine (no more than 60L of sparkling wine) and 110L of beer

If you are arriving from a non-EU country, the following goods may be imported into Italy by travellers over 18 years of age without incurring customs duty:

  • 200 cigarettes or 100 cigarillos or 50 cigars or 250g of tobacco

  • 4L of wine (excluding sparkling wine) and 16L of beer and 1L of spirits over 22% volume or 2L of alcoholic beverages less than 22% volume

  • Other goods up to the value of €430 for air and sea travellers and €300 for other travellers

You are not allowed to import meat or dairy products into Italy from outside the EU.


where to book trains, buses and rent car in Rome

Where to book a train and a bus ticket or rent a car in Rome?

When I plan a trip, I always make sure to have a well-planned trip.

I am not talking about planning where to be at what time of the day because travelling is pleasant to be spontaneous but not too much if you know what I mean.


I like to book everything a lot in advance like accommodation, flight, airport shuttle, bus and train tickets because I have learned during my travels that the sooner, the better in these cases.


I save a lot of money and time by booking things in advance. If you research at what time the train or bus is due to the departure, you will make sure to don't end up without a train to reach your next destination and wait till the day after.

So here are some links that will help you to plan at least the essentials.

Buses

There is also this way to travel around Italy, cheaper than train for sure but not so fast, so it all depends on how much time you have and what is your budget. Sometimes if there is not a train there is a bus so in case you are looking to buy some tickets, I advise you to do it on Omio, where you can also buy train tickets.

Trains

Two good websites to buy train tickets in Italy are Rail Europe and Omio, where you can check all the trains available and book your tickets in advance, I always use them when travelling in Italy and it is a great website.

By Taxi

I Way: This is a chauffeur website where you can book a private driver to go wherever you want not only from the airport to your accommodation.


Rent a Car

If you like driving like me and want to explore the area outside Rome, you can always rent a car and in this case, I always have a look at my favourite rental car websites and I see where I find the best deals.

Have a look at them here:

Discovercars is a Skyscanner, but for rental cars. And since you're comparing lots of different companies, you also get to choose from lots of different cars.

Rentalcars.com is an international car rental booking service that is present all over the world.


If the weather is nice why not enjoy the beauty of Italy driving a nice Scooter or a Bicycle without the issue to find a car park?

If this is an option you may consider, I have an amazing website to advise you to check

BikesBooking: where you will be able to choose between any kind of scooter, motorbike, quad and bicycle.

book activities and tours in rome


Where to book Tours and Activities in Rome?

If you want to check what attractions or museum tickets to buy to visit Rome, have a look at my article about what to see in that specific city.


For museums or other activities, I always check two different websites.

The first one is Tiqets where you can buy every kind of ticket in advance.

If you are looking for a guided tour or for a day trip outside to go exploring what this amazing country has to offer I advise you to check out GetYourGuide or Viator, where you can find every kind of tour or book an activity or museum in Italy.


If you are looking for some Day Trips outside Rome, have a look here!

wifi in rome

Is easy to find wifi in Rome?

You won't have any problems finding wifi here. It is available and pretty fast in all hotels and most restaurants or bars.


important telephone number rome

important telephone numbers in Rome


European Emergency Number 112 (they will direct you to the number you need)

General Emergency 113

Police (polizia)

Financial Police (guardia di finanza) 117

Medical Emergency (emergenza medical) 118

Fire Brigade (vigili del fuoco) 115

Forest Fire Brigade 1515

Road Assistance (soccorso stradale) 803116 from an Italian phone and 800 116 800 from a foreign mobile.


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About me

Hi! I'm Valentina,

but you can call me Vale.

I'm an Italian with a passion for well-planned travels and food.

In my Travel Guide, you will find everything you need to plan your perfect travel around the world.

Valentina

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