Our hotel is near the Vatican. Our flight departs at 9 AM. What is the best option to arrive at FCO on time?
Take a taxi or private car.
My family of four just Flew out of FCO a couple of weeks ago. Talk to your hotel a day or two before departure about arranging a taxi or a private car service to take you directly to the airport. We also used the MyTaxi app on our iPhones to arrange for Roma Capitale taxi’s to pick us up when we were in town. IMHO the app works better than trying to flag down a taxi or finding a taxi stand. Uber works also.
Matter of preference and how many of you there are but flat rate from central Rome to FCO is 48 euro by cab. The Leonardo Express train from Termini would also get you there in 32 minutes from the train station (first train at 5.35 AM). Tickets are 14 euro per adult or child over 12:
You would need to factor in transport to Termini.
If pinching pennies, Terravision airport coach service will get you there by 6:15 if taking the 5:30 AM bus. Cost: 5.80 € per adult or child over age 4. Journey time: 45 minutes from Termini.
Uber in Rome is Black Service only and pricier than what most Uber users are used to.
Because you'll be on the road before the height of the rush hour, I'd take a taxi. Arranging transportation with your hotel may help to avoid surprise efforts to collect extra charges. Certainly, get the hotel to explain what the charges will be, and have clear information about your check-in terminal to show the driver in writing if he's uncomfortable in English. If your airline requires a 3-hour advance check in, please believe them. But I think a cab pickup at 5:30 would be safe.