The first step to tackling Rome’s
many sites is finding out how to get to all of
Rome's transportation systems is
expansive, yet easy to understand. Due to so many ancient ruins
getting in the way, Rome is home to only two metro lines, but
plenty of buses. However, our favorite mode of transportation are
our own two feet.
Maps of Rome can be deceiving. Although the city looks quite
expansive on paper, majority of the city is accessible by the use
of your own two legs. Walking is truly the best way to discover
Rome’s past, present, and future. You may be taking a stroll over
to Campo di’ Fiori for its daytime market, and on the way you will
pass buildings by Bernini, petitioners for future laws, all while
seeing the everyday Roman stroll the cobblestone streets headed for
a café. Walking will not only allow you to familiarize
yourself with the city’s culture, but it will also help you keep
the pounds off after helpings of pasta and gelato.
Now picture New York’s subway system. Do you have the image in your
head? All of the lines, numbers and letters? Now, imagine there
only being two! Yes, that’s right, TWO lines! Rome’s metro system
is one of the easiest to navigate in all of Europe. There are only
two lines, Linea A and Linea B. To make it even easier, the two
lines only intersect at ONE stop; Termini. Linea A is very clean
and passes right through Lepanto (the stop 2 blocks from campus),
while Linea B has trains covered in graffiti and are not so
glamorous. What makes these lines even easier is the fact that
under the names of many of the stops, it will tell you what major
monument is there. For example, the stop, “Spagna” is the closest
stop to the Spanish Steps, while “Colosseo” is closest to the
- Cost: €1,00
- Hours: Sun-Fri runs 5:30- 23:30/Sat 5:30-
Roman buses reach all corners of the city. They will bring you
right past Aventine Hill and Circo Massimo, while also stopping
right outside of St. John’s campus. There are dozens of bus lines
and at each stop there will be a sign listing all stops the bus
will make. A great way to see the city at night is by hoping on a
bus to take you through the amazingly lit streets, especially in
the Ancient part of the city.
- Cost: €1,00 (VALIDATE)
- Hours: Most buses run from 5:30 until
Midnight. There are also buses that run past midnight, and can be
identified by an “N” at the end of the bus number. Ex.
When you enter the bus in Rome, you are required to validate your
ticket, just like on the Q46. However, the bus drivers in Rome
don't monitor the ticket validation the same way the do in New
York, since some passengers enter through the back door of the bus.
Sometimes tourists think that they can get away with riding the bus
without using their metro tickets. Not a good idea! Unlike New
York, there are inspectors, sometimes undercover, who ride the bus
to ensure that everyone has payed the €1 fare. If you get caught on
the bus without a validated ticket, you will be fined up to €100.
It is safer to always validate your ticket, since you never know
when an inspector might hop on your bus.
Just like any other city, taxi drivers can
sometimes be deceiving. In order to avoid being scammed, pick up a
taxi at a designated taxi stand. If a driver comes up to you
offering you a ride, they are most likely targeting you as an
unknowing tourist. If you call for a taxi in advance, the meter
will begin running as soon as the taxi is dispatched from its
One of the most important things to do when getting into a cab is
to make sure they are charging you by the correct rate. In Rome
there are two different Tariff fares, Tariffa 1 and Tariffa 2.
Tariffa 2 should ONLY be used outside of the GRA, which is the road
that circles the outside of the city. In order to avoid being
charged the extra fare, make sure that the meter box reads “1”,
which is usually in the top left or right corner of the meter box.
If you see that it says “2,” the best thing to do is point it out
to the driver until he switches it, or get a different
Taxi Rides to the Airport
Something to keep in mind when traveling to either of Rome’s
airports is to remember that there are fixed rates from anywhere
within the city to the specific airports. Prior to getting into the
cab, make sure that they will charge you the correct fair.
Fixed Rates for Airport
- Ciampino: €30,00
- Fiumicino: €40,00
It may look cool, but it’s ridiculously scary and dangerous if you
don’t know what you’re doing and don’t know the local driving laws.
As you will probably observe after just a day in Rome, Roman
drivers know no boundaries. Putting yourself at risk by trying to
partake in this specific aspect of local transportation isn’t worth
the potential injuries you could inflict upon yourself and others.
To sum it up, stick to walking or using any of Rome’s public