Transport, in a word ‘temperamental’

fotolunedimacchinetteIn order to see more  in Rome I would suggest getting a handle on public transport.

Buses

Buses are the best way to get around different places, as the metro only has two lines and Rome is a sprawling city. Night buses are also a plus.

www.atac.it : Search bus and tram routes on their homepage by putting in your address and where you want to go. Don’t rely on their timetables, because they don’t. They roughly come every 15/20 minutes. Make sure when you search that you put in the right time in the search if you’re looking for a NIGHT bus.

Tickets:

Many brave the bus ticketless, but  you can buy them at any place that has a blue sign outside with a white T. This is a tabaccheria, selling cigarettes, sweets and public transport tickets. The metro and bus ticket are the same. The vendors usually all speak English, enough for ticket sales. You can also buy the ticket on automatic machines in every metro station. Machines usually only takes coins and €5 notes, the machine says it takes more but don’t believe it! Validate the ticket in yellow machine on the actual bus, and in the stalls at the metro stop.

Types of tickets –

One go

BIT 1 way ticket: €1.50, one way on metro, one trip on bus. Lasts for 75 minutes. You can’t get a metro after getting a bus with the same ticket (unfortunately).

Longer duration tickets  (starts counting after you first punch the ticket)

BIG 24 hr ticket: €6 (Look for BIG on ticket machines in metro)

CIS 7 day ticket: €24 (look for CIS on ticket machines in metro)

BTI 3 day ticket: €16.50 (look for BTI on ticket machines in metro)

Monthly ticket: €35 (tabaccherie or at manned ticket stations in some metro stations)

Tips

Buses and metro are usually busy, get used to standing up and just go with it. Both are often late (yes the metro too, though only by 5 minutes or so). However bus stops luckily list every stop so you can literally go to any group of stops and find a bus that will take you at least part of the way you want to go. It’s like a fun puzzle.

Take note of the codes here for each ticket (eg. BIG, CIS etc) and look for it on the ticket machines in metro to know exactly what you’re getting.

Keep your bag close, as in any big city pickpockets are rife in Rome, they cut bags now so keep an eye on it, but don’t obsess over it.

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