Taking Taxi's in Rome

Dec 8th, 2003, 04:24 PM
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Taking Taxi's in Rome

Would anyone out there have any info on taking taxi's in Rome? What is the cost for an average ride from Termini to say the Vatican? Is there a surcharge for more than one person? How difficult is it to get a taxi.
Thanks for any input.
aocmand is offline  
Dec 8th, 2003, 04:34 PM
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This information is from 1998, but taxis were no problem when we were there. Cannot remember the cost, but I did not feel it was out of line. You can ask driver for a ballpark figure before you get in the cab.

The one thing you soon discover is that Rome has cars all over the place and is very conjested with traffic. We finally took a chance and did the subway. Boy! What a difference! You get there quicker and cheaper.

One warning though: Watch your pockets and personal belongings on the subway. The pickpockets work these and all of Rome pretty hard.
Bob1 is offline  
Dec 8th, 2003, 05:02 PM
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the economy of taxis varies by the # of people. We were there 3 years ago and found that for short runs for 3/4 people taxis didn't really cost more than buses. For 1 person the difference would obviously be greater. Frankly I enjoyed the cab rides - they gave a chance to see more of Rome, ask the driver questions about places we passed and kept the heart pumping - traffic lights are relatively rare and a lot of intersections are enrmous games of chicken (for pedestrians as well).
nytraveler is offline  
Dec 8th, 2003, 05:16 PM
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In Mar'03 one person, no luggage, pre-rush AM hour and an honest driver, it was 7.39e from Termini to St. Peter's Square.
But don't expect that price normally, everything was just in my favor .
Regards, Walter
ParadiseLost is offline  
Dec 9th, 2003, 05:59 AM
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My family of 5 with 4 suitcases took a taxi from Termini to Piazza Navona and the charge was 11 or 12 Euros. I know they charged extra for each piece of luggage. It may be a couple of dollars more to go to the Vatican. My advice is to always carry a map to show them exactly where you want to go. The drivers don't always speak English. Also, when you get the cab at the termini, there are ladies who call the cab for you. If you let them put your luggage into the cab, they charge you.
Have fun!
janetele is offline  
Dec 9th, 2003, 06:18 AM
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walk. it is a much nicer experience than a taxi.
jay is offline  
Dec 9th, 2003, 06:39 AM
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Taking taxis in Rome is NOT for the faint of heart. They can be notorious rip-offs although there's always some effort by government to prevent this. If you're the least bit tentative or insecure, your driver will know you're vulnerable. If you enter a cab aggressive and mistrusting, you're driver will be offended. If you don't know how to speak Italian, muster your courage and always be polite (preferably in Italian) AND be direct. Remember to speak simply and clearly and maintain eye contact with the driver as you smile like a nun. Once you get over the fear, you can experience a lovely ride.

Also, bear in mind maps will do little good. If you don't know the current flow of vehicular traffic through the city center, you WILL be at the mercy of your driver. There isn't an easy way around this. If you get taken for 5 Euro, no big deal. If you get taken for 40 Euro, be sure to know some good Italian cuss words. Good luck!

Ps...Taxis aren't permitted to accept rides freely from any area of the street. You are required to locate a taxi stand and wait, or call a taxi service number and offer an address.
NYCFoodSnob is offline  
Dec 9th, 2003, 07:57 AM
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I used taxis often during my 3 days in Rome last spring and found the drivers honest and polite, and the fares pretty reasonable -- typically about 8-10 Euros for Termini-to-Vatican, Spanish Steps-to-Colosseum, or similar distances in mid-day traffic. There may be surcharges for large luggage or late-night trips.
Always take a metered cab, and you must phone for one or go to a taxi stand; there's no hailing them from the curb as we do in the U.S.
Buon viaggio.
kayd is offline  
Dec 9th, 2003, 08:13 AM
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The only time we needed a taxi was from the Termini to our Hotel. Be VERY Careful here. The had a woman working at the curb posing as a real employee like at NY airports. Working as a team she and the cabbie said it was a 20euro flat charge per person from Termini. I asked for receipt and when I showed to the hotel employee he said it was a bogus receipt and it should have been like a 10 euro cab ride total. I didn't let it ruin my trip but it sure made me mad. We took a van our hotel recomended to the airport for 40euro.
scoob is offline  
Dec 9th, 2003, 01:44 PM
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At the termini also look out for the guys that ask you if you need a taxi and then help you load your luggage into the trunk. They will then demand a payment of 2 Euros. Our taxi driver told us it was an illegal practice. Just tell them you don't need any help and if you can't stop them from helping you should at least ignore their demands for payment.
BoulderCO is offline  
Dec 9th, 2003, 03:19 PM
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We're New Yorkers and we were ripped off twice (or, almost the second time) by Rome taxi drivers. At the Termini there is an official stand... ask for directions and be sure to get a cab there. make sure the meter is on. Think it starts at something like E2.50.
If you feel something is amiss... say so. We did and El Driver... was Oh So Sorry he had forgotten to reset his meter!!!
Grandma is offline  
Dec 9th, 2003, 03:31 PM
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Make sure you go under the covered walk area in the square as you exit termini, this is where the legal taxis line up.
Do not listen or even talk to the other drivers or their touts, just walk on by, go up to a legal cab, and negotiate the approx. price before you get in. It is easy and you won't get ripped off.
SeaUrchin is offline  
Dec 9th, 2003, 04:55 PM
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Taking a Roman taxi, especially at night is an E ticket ride. I never had a problem with driver honesty. You can't be timid though. Sitting up front turns the whole experience into an adreline pumpint thrill ride and it is one of my fondest memories of Rome.
McBetsy is offline  
Dec 9th, 2003, 06:44 PM
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To all that replied to my mesage , thank you so much. Believe me you all have given me the power to not be taken advantage of. All of you are great.
aocmand is offline  
Dec 9th, 2003, 08:05 PM
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We received special "tourist treatment" both times we caught cabs at official stands at terminis in Italy - once from the Rome termini to our hotel less than a mile away (20 euros) and once from the Sorrento train station to our hotel (also 20 euros). When we made the return trip in cabs the hotels called, the fare was half as much.

In the future, I plan to check with the hotel first, to see what fare we should expect to pay. Then I would negotiate that fare with any cab I selected. It's too irritating to be charged twice the fare we ought to pay.

On the other hand, I must say that the cab ride from the Rome Termini to our hotel was an unforgetable experience! Hysterically funny, because the ride was simply hair raising - everything a small-town girl like me could have dreamed of in a crowded, unfamiliar city, slammed from one side of the cab to the other, surly cab driver who never made eye contact, screeching on the brakes, veering between lanes, following a route so circuitous we had no idea where he was taking us, and dumped at our hotel, demanding his fare with an "What? You got a problem?" attitude. Funny, funny, funny.

That would, I am sure, never happen in Germany, where we visited this past September. The Germans we encountered in all the trades and professions were scrupulous. Not the same in Italy, where a different code of honor seemed to often operate.

I wouldn't warn anyone off Italy or discourage anyone from traveling there. It's fabulous! But I'll be a much wiser girl next time....maybe...
Mary_Fran is offline  
Dec 10th, 2003, 03:18 AM
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Mary_Fran, your reply brought back so many memories. Thank you. Taxi rip-offs used to be a common problem with tourists in both Rome and NYC. Very popular Mayors in both cities worked hard to end the corruption. The difficulty with Rome is more tourists rely on this mode of transportation than in NYC. Most Roman locals either walk or hop on a bus to get from one side of the circular city-center to the next. Plus, the language barrier and the ever-changing road routes makes it very easy for a taxi driver to try to "pull one over" on anyone who doesn't speak Italian.

Rome's taxi drivers made a scathing amount of money from rip-off operations for many, many years. This "work" activity was built into personal pride and achievement. The Jubilee Year changed much of the local "attitude" on this subject, especially with the help of forward-thinking politicians. Yet, many members from the old taxi guard, who still relish in the successful "rip-off," remain.

Mary_Fran, a little wisdom helps.
NYCFoodSnob is offline  
Dec 10th, 2003, 11:05 AM
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I think that Rome taxis have received a bad rap. I used taxis several times over my 10-day stay last September and I was never ripped off. I remember having a young women driver one evening. She was great. When someone wouldn't get out of her way, she would drive right up to their butts, trunks, rear wheels and sit on them until they got the hint and moved. LOL. Another taxi driver took me on a ride up a hill to a great restaurant overlooking Rome and didn't charge me anything because I was his last fare for the night.

Speaking of NYC taxis... I was in NYC last weekend. I couldn't quite put my finger on it, but I knew that something was wrong. Finally I realized what it was, I didn't hear the grating sound on Joan Rivers' voice telling me the rules of riding in NYC taxis. I asked the driver why no recording. He told me new mayor, new rules. LOL.
MizzEve is offline  
Dec 10th, 2003, 12:18 PM
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I agree with MizzEve, in all my trips to Rome and the rest of Italy, the only times I have been ripped off is when I have taken an illegal cab by mistake.

You have the driver's license number posted, in a legal cab, so you can report him if he cheats and he knows it. You do have to pay more for night rides, luggage, many people, etc, so it may seem like you are paying different prices from one trip to another.

A good idea is to ask your hotel desk what the approx. rate is for your ride or ask a cab driver,whom you like, a few simple fare costs. Ask the approx. fare BEFORE you get in the cab, don't let anyone on the sidelines help you with luggage, the driver will load it for you.

I find it exhilerating to ride the cabs in Rome, they are professional, experienced and I trust their driving.
Natalia is offline  
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