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Car Rental in Rome

I am planning to be in Rome in April and am considering renting a car. I've been trying to figure out the cost of the cab to/from the airport and getting around. I am curious how difficult it is to park in Rome, etc. Any ideas/pointer?
I am also going to Bari and have to rent a car there so I thought I might just rent the car for the whole trip and drive from Rome to Bari and avoid another plane flight.

Posted by
63 posts

Don't do it!

If you must rent a car, do it only for the portion of the trip that absolutely requires it. Use trains, buses, subways, etc. for the rest, especially in the cities.

There are a ton of postings here about getting around without a car. They have helped me a bunch.

Posted by
525 posts

EVERYTHING is in walking distance. DO NOT RENT A CAR IN ROME!!!
I don't know where Bari is but I'm sure you will be able to go by train and rent a car there IF YOU MUST have a car.
I also know you will be getting LOTS of comments of why you shouldn't rent a car while you are in Rome.

Posted by
4555 posts

If you want to stop along the way, then rent the car ONLY as you're leaving Rome and heading for Bari. Having a car in Rome is an unnecessary and stressful expense. Otherwise, take the train to Bari (4 hours...faster than by car and much less stressful, for about 42 Euro) and rent the car there if you need to.

Posted by
345 posts

Hello Rose, I have to wonder if you have a good tour book? You might take a look at the RS Italy and I think he also has a Rome book. It will be really helpful in planning your trip to a very different place. Have a great trip.

Posted by
10344 posts

"Your car is a worthless headache in Rome." (Rome 2008, Rick Steves)

Posted by
2207 posts

Rose... you've gotten SOLID advice here. I live in Rome and drive a motorino daily. I also on occasion drive my friends around town in their car as they get nervous in the city. This is a difficult and expensive place to own - rent - drive - park - insure - register - repair - and maintain an automoible. Many folks that live here DO NOT go through the hassle of driving here! My AMEX card will not even cover insurance in Italy when I rent a car for our weekend jaunts (as they do almost everywhere else in the world!!!)

There are more than 3 million people in the metro area and at last count slightly more than 300,000 parking spaces. Folks that have been here can chuckle over the creative parking strategies of Romans - almost as creative as their driving practices.... So like everyone says, take the bus, train, metro, taxi... and avoid driving in Rome!


Posted by
32265 posts


I DEFINITELY agree with the others! Driving in Rome is NOT a good idea. I've been driving for over 40 years and I'm sure I could manage, but I doubt that it would be an enjoyable experience. Parking could be a problem, as I noticed on one of my past visits that even the locals were becoming acquainted with "the Boot".

Regarding gettting to the city from the airport, use the Leonardo Express rather than a Cab as it's by far the easiest method (and it's not affected by traffic jams while the meter is running!). As I recall, the cost is about €11 and it's a 30-minute trip to Termini. From there it's easy to get just about anywhere in Rome via Metro, Bus or Taxi (or walk if your Hotel is close to Termini).

I'm not sure on the best option to get to Bari; I'd have to do some checking.

Happy travels!

Posted by
2297 posts


I'm one of the few people here who travelled to Italy and had a rental car for most of the time there. It worked well for us as we travelled as a family and we wanted to spend time in quieter places that were hard to access by public transportation.

BUT, never ever would we consider driving a car IN Rome. Taking a cab or a private limo service from the airport to the hotel is cheaper than renting a car for that day. We used and had a quick, smooth and cheap ride. And once you're in your hotel you get almost anywhere quicker by walking than by driving a car and searching for the needle in the haystack - also called a parking spot. And for the few places that are too far to walk to (the Vatican was a bit off for us, the catacombs are a bit outside) you'll be fine with a cab or the bus.

You may also discover that a train ride to Bari is more comfortable than driving out there. With the train it's about a 4 hours ride, with the car it'll be close to 5 hours - not including the time it would take you to pick up the car and deal with the assorted paperwork there.

I don't know the area around Bari and what you intend to do there so no advice from me what mode of transportation would be best in that situation :-)