In many European cities you can visit the main sights and get around without using the public transport, but unfortunately Rome is not like that. If you are here short term, walking around the city to see the sights can be tiring, as there is a lot to see and do, and so little time. On the other hand, if you are here for longer sooner or later you will need to catch a bus or train. That is why it is good to know that Rome’s public transportation company Atac is not the most efficient one, but is definitely cheap and good value for money. Nevertheless, it is always a good idea to rent an apartment in Rome that is walking distance from your work or school.
One ticket costs €1, 50 and is valid for 90 minutes. With one ticket and within the 90 minutes it is valid you can use any bus, metro, tram, or subway train in the city (but only 1 metro ride). You can buy the tickets from ticket machines at all metro stations. The machines take notes or coins, but it is safer to use coins or notes in the closest amount to what you are actually paying. This way you are not risking your change, because yes, sometimes it happens that the machine does not give you back the rest and you end up buying more tickets than you need. Many machines have a credit card slot, but this does not work, so make sure to always have some coins with you.
If you are not using the metro, you will need to buy the ticket before getting on the bus/tram. You can find the tickets in tabacchi shops and they are recognized by a T sign outside the store.
Besides the standard 90 minute ticket there are other options to choose from:
- 24His a 1-day ticket. It’s valid for 24 hours of unlimited travel and the price is €7.
- 48His a 2-day ticket. It’s valid for 48 hours from the time you first use it and the price is €12,50.
- 72His a 3-day or 72-hour ticket and it costs €18.
- CISis a 7-day ticket valid for one week from the time of stamping. The price is €24.
To stamp your ticket on the buses and trams use the yellow machines. When you insert the ticket the machine will print the time you stamped it and the time it expires. If you are using the metro, stamp your ticket before getting onto the platform. Fines for not having a valid ticket go from €50 if you pay on the spot, up to €100.