Old Jan 24th, 1997, 07:06 PM
Debbie Beaupre
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The train is easy to use, fairly inexpensive, & goes from the airport to downtown to the main train station in Rome. I rode it last year & was able to navigate with no knowledge of Italian. Also, check Fodor's web site on Rome- very helpful
Old Jan 25th, 1997, 12:24 PM
Marta Gomez
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Debra - I just returned from Italy and here's my story. We flew into Fiumicino Airport and took a taxi to our hotel which was about two blocks from the Piazza di Popolo. It cost us L65,000 which is only about $13.00 (rates are lower in winter). The train is a bargain if you can negotiate the underground stairways between tracks (binarios) with all of your luggage. If not, you better take a taxi.
Old Jan 26th, 1997, 03:50 PM
Fabrizio La Rocca
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The train is probably your best bet. It quite inexpensive (about $8 one way) and runs both on a direct line to Rome's main train station (Termini) or on a local line that stops at other smaller stations. If you are planning on staying in the center near Piazza Navona or the Vatican, you can take the local and get off at the Trastevere Station (only $5 one way). From there a cab drive to your final destination would be inexpensive.
I've taken cabs to the city and I've paid as much as $70. Rememember that taxis in Rome charge for extra luggage.
At the Rome airport you can find free carts and elevators to bring you to different levels so that you won't have to deal with the stairs.
Most people understand english in case you need directions, and information desks are readily available.
Old Jan 27th, 1997, 11:37 AM
S. R. Dozier
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I completely agree with Sr. La Rocca's knowledgable response. I would only add a few details to help you feel more comfortable. When you enter the baggage claim area at the airport, look first for a free luggage cart (carrello/cah-REH-loh), which you may take with you as far as the train track. As you exit through customs, there will be a mass of taxi/limo drivers trying to get your business. Beware of those who are not accredited, and be forewarned that there is an additional charge for nearly every circumstance, such as rush hour, extra people, extra luggage, night, etc. Ahead and slightly left is an official information booth for the city (citta`/ chee-TAH) or for the trains (treni/TREH-nee). Pick the correct line. If you just want to go directly to the train, turn left out of customs and start looking left along the wall for an indentation where the elevator (ascensore/ah-shehn-SOH-ray) is tucked away. Take the elevator up; you might have to wait in line. Exit the elevator into a long windowed hall and go right. You will then have to turn left at an intersecting hall that will take you to the huge lounge entrance to the train tracks. There should signs that say "treni" or "Roma". Remember not to take your cart on the moving sidewalks. As soon as you enter the lounge, there will be a ticket office (biglietteria/bee-yet-teh-REE-ah) on the right. You cannot take your cart inside, so leave it where you or a traveling companion can see it through the windows. Take your money with you. Stand in the line for Roma, if they're busy. Say "one-way ticket for Rome." Most of these employees speak enough English to understand. Some don't. If you think there's a problem, say "uno per Roma Termini-solo per andare" (OON-oh pear ROH-mah TEHR-mee-nee. SOH-loh pear ahn-DAH-ray). That will get you to the downtown train station. The employee should tell you which of the two tracks (binario/bee-NAH-ree-oh) (singular) to take and how long you have to wait. If you don't understand, there is a lighted sign over each track entry. Be sure to choose the correct station destination. When you get down from the train at Termini, you will be on the last track to one side of the terminus. There should be carts there, as well, but you may have to hustle to get one. Head away from the end of the track and look for the exit (uscita/oo-SHEE-tah). This will take you into a huge perpendicular covered hall, open at each end. In the center, there are stairs down into the metro, an experience that is explained well in most guide books. Expect to be approached by all manner of folks hustling hotel rooms and cab rides. Make sure your purse/money are secure. If you don't want to do the metro, you're probably better off going on across the hall, through the large shop & ticket booth area, and out the front. There you will see a line for the legitimate taxis. It's a good idea to have your hotel name and address written out. Wouldn't hurt to have studied a map of Rome and have a good idea of where the hotel is. If it is near a well-known site, you could say "near the....." (vicino a .../vee-CHEE-noh ah...). Be sure to ask the price before you get in and make sure there is a meter that runs.
Be aware that many tours gather at hotels off the highway between the airport and town, in which case you're better off taking a legitimate taxi from the airport by exiting directly out of the customs area and finding the taxi line out on the sidewalk. Your travel agent or tour company should give you this information.
This is all actually a fairly simple process. Detailing it just makes it sound more difficult.
Here's a tip. When I don't speak the language, I always carry a phrase book and a dictionary (both pocket-size) in my purse. That way I can at least communicate by pointing.
Buon viaggio.
Old Feb 7th, 1997, 09:21 AM
Richard Green
Posts: n/a
I agree with using the train. But one response (from Marta) said L65000 was only $13. It's about $40.

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