By Plane — Most flights arrive at Rome’s Leonardo da Vinci International Airport ([tel] 06-65951), popularly known as Fiumicino, 30km (19 miles) from the city center. (If you’re flying from other European cities, you might land at Ciampino Airport, discussed below.) There is a tourist information office at the airport’s Terminal B, International arrivals, open daily from 9am to 6pm.
A cambio (money exchange) operates daily from 7am to 11pm, offering surprisingly good rates, and there are ATMs in the airport.
There’s a train station in the airport. To get into the city, follow the signs marked TRENI for the 31-minute shuttle to Rome’s main station, Stazione Termini. The shuttle (the Leonardo Express) runs from 5:52am to 11:36pm, every 30 minutes, for 14€ one-way. On the way, you’ll pass a machine dispensing tickets, or you can buy them in person near the tracks if you do not have small bills on you. Tip: When you arrive at Termini, get out of the train quickly and grab a baggage cart: It’s a long schlep from the track to the exit or to other train connections, and baggage carts can be scarce.
A taxi from da Vinci airport to the city costs a flat-rate 48€ for the 1-hour trip, depending on traffic (hotels tend to charge 50€–60€ for a pick-up service). The expense might be worth it if you have a lot of luggage. Note that the flat rate is applicable from the airport to central Rome and vice versa, but only if your central Rome location is inside the Aurelian Walls (most hotels are). Otherwise, standard metered rates apply, which can be 75€ or higher.
If you arrive instead at Ciampino Airport ([tel] 06-65951), you can take a Terravision bus ([tel] 06-894239) to Stazione Termini. Trip time is about 45 minutes and costs 4€. A taxi from here to Rome costs 30€, a flat rate that applies as long as you’re going to a destination within the old Aurelian Walls. Otherwise, you’ll pay the metered fare, but the trip is shorter (about 40 minutes.).
By Train or Bus — Trains and buses (including trains from the airport) arrive in the center of old Rome at Stazione Termini, Piazza dei Cinquecento. This is the train, bus, and subway transportation hub for all Rome, and it is surrounded by many hotels, especially budget ones.
If you’re taking the Metropolitana (subway), follow the illuminated red-and-white M signs. To catch a bus, go straight through the outer hall and enter the sprawling bus lot of Piazza dei Cinquecento. You will also find a line of taxis parked out front.
The station is filled with services. There is an exchange window close to the end of platform 14 where you can change money, and an ATM at the end of platform 24. Informazioni Ferroviarie (in the outer hall) dispenses information on rail travel to other parts of Italy. There are also a tourist information booth, baggage services, newsstands, and snack bars.
By Car — From the north, the main access route is the Autostrada A1. Once called “Motorway of the Sun,” the highway links Milan with Naples via Bologna, Florence, and Rome. At 754km (469 miles), it is the longest Italian autostrada and is the “spinal cord” of Italy’s road network. All the autostrade join with the Grande Raccordo Anulare, a ring road encircling Rome, channeling traffic into the congested city. Tip: Long before you reach this road, you should study a map carefully to see what part of Rome you plan to enter and mark your route accordingly. Route markings along the ring road tend to be confusing.
Warning: Return your rental car immediately, or at least get yourself to a hotel, park your car, and leave it there until you leave Rome. Think twice before driving in Rome—the traffic can be nightmarish. In any case, most of central Rome is a ZTL (Zone Traffico Limitato), off limits for nonresidents (hotels can issue temporary permits), and rigorously enforced by cameras. You will almost certainly be fined.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.