The best Rome airport to fly into: a complete guide to Rome airports with all you need to know

by marta

Discover the best Rome airport to fly into and what to expect with my local guide to airports in Rome: Rome airport codes, transport to and from Rome city center; facilities and overall experience.

One of the most frequent questions I receive about traveling to Rome is about Rome airports.

In particular, a few things seem to worry first time travelers to Rome. For example:

What is the best Rome airport to fly into?

What is the best Rome airport for families with kids?

How many airports are in Rome?

How long does the journey airport – Rome city center take?

Can you pop into Rome City center if you have a few hours’ layover in Rome?

Departure hall at Rome Airport

Which of Rome airports is closest to the center?

And what is the best airport in Rome for facilities and transport options?

I and from Rome and I have flown in and out of the city more times than I could ever count. Therefore, I can help!

In this article, I will address all these questions and a few more to help you plan your journey at best.

What is the best Rome airport to fly into?

For most visitors, the best Rome airport to fly into is Rome Leonardo da Vinci Fiumicino Airport.

This is the biggest, best served and best connected airport in Rome and the one receiving the largest number of flights by the largest selection of airlines.

Fiumicino airport FCO is always my first choice for comfort.

Ciampino Airport CIA is the best airport for visitors who have accommodation in the Southern part of Rome or who plan on renting a car from the airport and drive South, without passing from Rome.

Good to know: in 2022, direct train services from Fiumicino to Naples and Florence started, making Fiumicino not just the best airport in Rome but also a great option for those heading to Naples and Florence whiteout stopping in Rome.

How many airports are in Rome?

Rome has two international airports: Leonardo da Vinci / Fiumicino (FCO) and Ciampino (CIA).

Good to know: Rome also has a small airport called Aeroporto del’Urbe, along Via Salaria.

This airport currently operates as a heliport mainly and does not offer commercial flights.

Therefore, I do not cover it in this guide.

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Photo collage of Trevi Fountain Rome and departure hall in Rome Airport with text: complete guide to Rome airports

Rome airports codes

The airport code for Leonardo da Vinci /Fiumicino Rome airport is FCO

The Code for Ciampino airport is CIA

In Rome airports, you often see the acronym ADR which means ‘Aeroporti di Roma’: it is the general name for the administration of the two airports.

They are very different from each other although they can both come in handy to the international traveler.

Here is an overview of the two.

What is Fiumicino, Leonardo da Vinci airport, like?

Fiumicino (official name Leonardo da Vinci airport) is the biggest airport in Rome.

It is now a major international airport with facilities to match.

It is outside of the city, in the locality of Fiumicino, and for many years it was the only airport in the city for international commercial flights.

It is a large airport with several terminals, it is modern, beautiful in parts and served by parking lots, a train station, bus services and shuttles.

Fiumicino Rome airport departures hall

The airport went through a large fire year ago and part of it is now newly done up and elegant.

Other parts are less impressive but overall it is a good airport and a reasonably easy one to navigate, if you ignore some glaring exceptions such as tricky accessibility of some parts and confusing signage when looking for the train station.

Fiumicino is well equipped with restaurants, duty free, cafes and shops and even children areas.

Car rental companies, currency exchange, tax refund and similar services are all available.

Fiumicino Airport Terminals

Fiumicino has 4 terminals, confusingly called 1, 2 3 and 5:

Terminal 1 is for domestic and international flights. Schengen Area and Alitalia Medium-Haul Flights. Domestic and Schengen Area flights operated by Air France, KLM, Aer Lingus, Hop!, Air Europa, Luxair, Air Corsica, Darwin Airline and Air Serbia

Terminal 2 has domestic flights, Schengen and non-Schengen by low cost airlines such as Easyjet, Wizzair, Blue Air, Sun Express Air Moldova, and Meridiana, except for flights to Olbia operating from T3

Terminal 3 has Domestic flights, Schengen and Non-Schengen.

Terminal 5 has flights to the United States and Israel operated by American and Israeli airline companies. Temporarily also the following airlines: Air China, Air Canada,   China Airlines, China Eastern Airlines, Air Transat, Korean  Air  and Srilankan Airlines

Fiumicino airport is to the east of Rome and quite a distance from Rome city centee.

The quickest way to get in and out is by train, which takes approximately 40 minutes (see below chart with transport options).

You can find here >>> my complete guide to getting from Fiumicino Airport to Rome City Center

Shops in Fiumicino Airport Rome

Fiumicino airport has many shops including Italian designer clothing, bags and luggage, electronic, food, books, etc.

Brands with shops in Fiumicino airport include:

  • Bulgari
  • Damiani
  • Valentino
  • Prada
  • Gucci
  • Moncler
  • Tod’s
  • Versace
  • Fendi
  • Salvatore Ferragamo
  • Furla
  • Dolce & Gabbana
  • Omega
  • Rolex
  • Chanel
  • Coccinelle
  • Desigual
  • Diesel
  • Ermenegildo Zegna
  • Emporio Armani
  • Hermés
  • Lacoste
  • Max Mara
  • Marina Militare
  • Pinko
  • Relay

Fiumicino airport at Rome also has a good duty free shopping area with Italian specialties, food and souvenirs, a pharmacy and several good restaurants including pizza, Italian restaurants, Asian/Noodle restaurants.

Good to know: most shops in terminal 3 are before passport control so it is wise to do your shopping beforehand.

Kids’ facilities in Fiumicino Airport – Fiumicino is the best Rome airport for families

Fiumicino has baby changing restrooms facilities and a few play area in Terminal 3 for children up to age 11.

While these facilities are rather basic, they are great for families and well located close to the restaurants / facilities (upstairs) and again at the boarding area.

Children play area in Fiumicino Airport at Rome Italy

Fiumicino airport wi-fi

Fiumicino airport offers free wifi, with an option to upgrade to a faster connection. The free tier is good and includes a reasonable amount of data for basic use while waiting for boarding.

Getting tested ar Fumicino airport

Since 2020, Fiumicino Airport is a equipped with a testing area located at Terminal 3 Arrivals area. 

The area is in operation from 00:00 until 20:00 every day and offers a rapid or molecular swab service. Currently, the service costs:

  • €20 for an antigen test, obtaining the test result within 20 minutes;
  • €69.88 for a molecular test. The swab result can be pick up in person at the airport within 36 hours.

Credit card, ATM cards and smartphone contactless payment apps are accepted.

To access the service, you need to pre-register online on the following website , and go directly to the Test Area at the airport.

Find all official info about this service HERE

Parking at Fiumicino Airport Rome

Fiumicino Airport has several multi-storey car parks named A-B-C-D and serving all areas of the airport. 80 parking spots are marked as ‘parcheggio rosa’ and offer larger areas for families with infants.

You can find the parking closest to your terminal and book a space here.

What is Ciampino airport like?

Ciampino (CIA) used to be a military airport, it is much smaller than Fiumicino and much closer to the city, as well as immensely less developed and appealing.

Luggage belt in Ciampino airport Rome with sign for the Ciampino Airline shuttle

This is the typical Ryanair airport, one that opened its doors to commercial flights when the low-cost Irish carrier came onto the market.

Like many other airports of this type, it is not exactly one to write home about and I personally do not love it.

If everything goes well, you will of course be ok but get stuck there for hours (been there, done that) and the last of seating available or free wi-fi quickly becomes a nuisance.

Ciampino has minimal shops and restaurant facilities (none after passport control) but sufficient to keep you going if you are ok with a slice of pizza or a sandwich.

There is very little here to keep the kids entertained if traveling as a family so I usually recommend it as an airport to get to Rome rather than leaving.

Shopping in Ciampino Airport

In the departure area of Ciampino airport at Rome you will find:

  • WHSmith (magazines, books, trave accessories, snacks)
  • Just Design (accessories)
  • BFC money exchange till
  • TrueStar (luggage wrapping service)
  • Aelia dutyfree
  • Sanifarma (Pharmacy)
  • Barbieri (custom jewellery)
  • Cioccolatitaliani cioccolateria
  • Ristorante Gusto, Food & Wine
  • Rossosapore pizzeria
  • ChefExpress (Cafe/)

In the arrivals area you will find a cafe’, money exchange and a travel agency.

Services in Ciampino Airport

  • Wi-Fi (weak signal)
  • First air spot
  • Money exchange
  • Lost & Found
  • Baby changing facilities
  • Tourist Info Point
  • Airport helper
  • Vat refund tills

Parking in Ciampino Airport

Ciampino airport has parking areas called P3, P4, P5 and P6.

Connections from Ciampino Airport to Rome

Ciampino Airport is connected with the city by bus and taxis.

You can find here >>> my complete guide to getting from Ciampino Airport to Rome City Center

So, what it the best airport for Rome?

The best airport to fly into Rome is Fiumicino/ Leonardo da Vinci Airport for families and services.

I fly in and out of Ciampino any time the airfare makes better sense and the advantage is that it is much closer to the South of the city if this is where you live.

If not,  I highly suggest you make Fiumicino your first choice.

Rome airport transportation: how it works

There are several ways to get from Rome airport to your accommodation in the city center.

From Fiumicino you can choose between taxi, train or shuttle bus.

Find here >>> my complete guide on how to get from Fiumicino Airport into Rome

From Ciampino you can choose between shuttle bus, taxi or a new service called Ciampino Airlink that combines bus+train.

Find here >>> my complete guide to get from Ciampino Airport to Rome City center.

At a glance:

Rome airport transportation from FiumicinoType of transportCost Approx Journey Time 
Train Leonardo express / Fara Sabina Local trainTrain14 euro /8 Euro33 minutes
Bus (several companies)Busfrom 5  euro55 minutes (more with traffic)
Official Rome TaxiCar / People carrier60 EuroDepends on destination
Rome airport transportation from CiampinoType of TransportCostApprox Journey time
Bus (several companies)Bus5 Euro40 min (much more with traffic)
TaxiCar40 Eurodepends on destination
Ciampino AirlinkBus + train2.70 Euro40 mins, depends on traffic

On top of these option, available from the airport themselves, you can also make your way into Rome city via Uber. You can order a car in Rome via the Uber app and chose between several type of services and car quality standards and size.

Please be advised that the wifi service in Rome is awful. You get good service inside Fiumicino airport but that quickly stops once your leave the main building.

Do not rely on it for anything as important as a prepaid ride – make sure you have your own wi-fi hotspot, a local sim with data plan or a good data plan for roaming or you may well be left stranded!

Cost of taxi from Rome airport into the city center

There is a flat fee for taxi rides from Rome airports into the city center.

In 2021, the costs are (official prices as per airport website):

From Fiumicino:

  • Roma City center (defined as any destination inside the Aurelian walls: € 50,00
  • Castello della Magliana – Parco dei Medici: € 31,00
  • Nuova Fiera di Roma: € 26,00
  • Ciampino airport: € 52,00
  • Tiburtina Train Station: € 57,00 
  • Ostiense Train station: € 47,00
  • Civitavecchia Porto (Cruise port): € 125,00

From Ciampino

  • 30 euro from Ciampino Airport to any destination inside the Aurelian Walls
  • 30 euro to Ostiense Train Station
  • 35 euro to Tiburtina Train Station
  • 50 euro to Fiumicino Airport

Can you pop into Rome from the airport if you have  few hours layover?

If you only have a few hours in between flights, you are unlikely to have enough time to get in Rome city centre, see anything significant and be able to get back. 

However, if there is something you particular you want to see (let’s say the Colosseum from the outside) you may be able to get in and out on time if you catch a cab and get them to wait for you as you snap away.

If you are relying on public transport, the quickest way from Fiumicino is the Leonardo express train.

However, take into account that once at Termini station, you will have to then rely on local buses to get you in and out of the historical area.

If you are happy to come into Rome anyway, what you can do in a short time is to take a stroll in the beautiful Monti district, which is just beside the station or catch a bus down Via Nazionale, to catch a glimpse of Vittoriano and Colosseum from outside.

While this will be a rushed stop, it can be a good option if you have several hours (4+) and don’t want to stay in Fiumicino. If arriving in Ciampino, I would not take the risk unless you had a full day in between flights.

I hope you found this post helpful and helped answer a question: what is the best airport to fly into Rome?

This post was originally written in 2019 and has now been fully updated.

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