As the Italian capital has two airports, Rome Fiumicino and Rome Ciampino. it is advisable to check at which airport your flight will land, prior to booking your flights.
Rome Fiumicino, officially know as Leonardi Da Vinci, is the airport used by most national carriers, such as British Airways and Alitalia.
Rome Ciampino, it’s full name being Campino-G D Pastine, is mainly used by budget airlines such as Ryanair and Wizz Air, although it is also used as a military airport. Unusually, for an airport predominantly used by low cost carriers, it is closer to Rome city centre (16kms), that the main airport (it’s 31 kms from Fiumicino to the city centre).
I have used both Rome airports.
We landed at Fiumicino when we flew with Lufthansa from Edinburgh to Rome, via Frankfurt. We took the Leonardi express train into Rome Termini station. We decided to walk to our hotel, near the Trevi fountain, as we felt we’d like some exercise and we only had hand luggage. However, we did get pretty lost trying to find our hotel. I was beginning to wish that we had booked Rome airport transfers in order to have reached our hotel quickly, so that we could have a shower and go straight out to dinner, as opposed wandering around the streets of Rome wheeling our suitcases, feeling hot, sweaty and hungry.
When we flew with Ryanair we landed at Ciampino. The airport facilities were pretty basic, but that wasn’t an issue as our flight was so cheap, only costing around £30 return. In fact it cost almost as much to park the car at Edinburgh Airport, as one Ryanair return flight to Rome from Edinburgh. We picked up a hire car at Ciampino airport, as we were doing a road trip down to Puglia (the toe of Italy). When we were driving back to drop off the car at Ciampino before our return flight to Edinburgh, we could see the perimeter fence of the airport, but had difficulty finding the entrance to airport. It didn’t seem to be very well sign posted. It was an awful feeling that we might miss our flight home, despite thinking that we had left plenty of time to reach Ciampino airport to drop off our hire car, before catching the flight back to Edinburgh.
I came to the conclusion that if you are planning to stay in the city centre when visiting Rome, that it’s a good idea to pre-book an airport transfer to your hotel. That way you can make the most of your time in Rome, by walking out off the airport to a car waiting for you and be taken straight to your hotel. If there are more than two people in your party, then using a Rome airport transfer service can be cost effective, compared to using public transport.
Picking up a taxi at the airport can be a bit of a hit or a miss. You might be able to find a taxi quickly, but you may have to queue for some time.
Taking pubic transport into Rome from either airport could mean a bit of a wait for the next train or bus. Plus you still have to get to your hotel at the other end.