Rome

6 days in Rome: Budget Breakdown

Rome, the Eternal City, is a place that has captured our hearts and our stomachs. From the ancient Colosseum to the breathtaking Trevi Fountain, we were in awe of the city’s rich history and stunning architecture. But let’s not forget about the food! Italian cuisine is some of the best in the world, and we made sure to indulge in as many delicious pastas, mouthwatering pizzas, and heavenly gelatos as we could.

So, how much did our trip to Rome in September 2022 cost? Here’s our budget breakdown for 6 days in Rome:

Flights

We found a good deal on flights to Rome with Brussels Airlines, and we were able to snag round-trip tickets for a reasonable price (BRU – FCO). Our tickets were booked in June, two and a half months in advance. Included was two hand luggage, one checked in bag, and two seat selections so we could sit next to each other. We also chose a direct flight so that we arrived in Rome before noon. Our return flight was at 8PM which meant we still had an almost-full last day in Rome. This made sure we could make the most of our limited time in Rome as we only had 6 days.

All in all, we found that this was a fair price, considering the convenience of having no stop-over and the extra checked bag (although paying to sit next to each other is a pity). Of course, the price of your tickets is highly dependant on where you’re coming from.

Total cost of flights: € 210,14

Accommodation

We knew that we wanted to stay in a central location so that we could easily explore the city. We decided to splurge on a nice hotel near Piazza Venezia. After having an amazing experience with the hotel chain Sonder in New York, we decided to give them another go. The thing we like about Sonder is their contactless check-in, the convenience of asking questions through their app (for example asking for new towels). The fact they have fancy locations near popular spots is also a big plus.

Sonder Piazza Venezia did not disappoint: the view from our balcony was absolutely breathtaking! It really was worth the extra cost to be able to wake up to such a beautiful sight each morning. That being said, it’s definitely possible to find more budget-friendly accommodations in Rome, it just depends on your priorities.

Total cost of accommodation for 5 nights: € 899,70

Transportation

We used both Uber and local taxi services during our trip. The total cost for transportation came out to € 250 straight. If you’re planning to take cabs in Rome, it’s worth noting that Uber is about 20% more expensive than the local IT Taxi agency. Download their app and try them out if you want to save money (they even accept cards in the cab!). Their app lets you order a cab straight away (like Uber). You just pay the fare at the end of the trip. We do have to mention that most of these cab drivers are true Italians who only speak Italian. We had a lot of funny moments where neither of us could understand the other as their English (and our Italian) were not that good. At a certain moment we even had to help a driver by using Google Maps!

We think that using public transportation is a great way to save money, although we only figured out how to buy tickets on our third day or so (you can buy them in vending machines in any metro station, convenience stores or newsagents). Since we were there for only 6 days, we chose the most convenient option which is taking a taxi when needed. Using public transportation can save you a lot of money, though!

Total cost of transportation: € 250

Food

If you know us, you know that we looooove food, and Rome did not disappoint. We ate at a variety of restaurants, from casual trattorias to fine dining establishments. The total cost for food came out to € 871,80. This includes several meals during the day like breakfast, quick lunches and dinner. We just couldn’t get enough of the Italian cuisine! We tried a variety of restaurants, for some we even had to wait in line for over an hour before opening time. Definitely worth it though!

We also couldn’t resist trying all the different flavors of gelato Rome has to offer. The total cost for this came out to € 15,90. It was worth every spoonful! Although it may seem like a small amount, we both ordered ice cream at least 4 times (always with 2 scoops/flavors) during our trip. For less than € 16,00, this is really cheap.

Looking back at it, we were actually a little surprised the total amount spent on food was “only” that much. Okay, our expenses for food were almost as high as our expense for our accommodation. But knowing that we ordered a bottle of wine with almost every lunch and dinner, this doesn’t really strike us as too much. Most of the times we ordered some finger-food or sharing dishes as an appetizer as well. Since we did our best to explore the local cuisine, we find this a really reasonable price.

You can save money by not ordering a bottle of wine with every meal, that’s true, but what we really don’t recommend is “cheaping out” on the food part. Rome has so much to offer, and food is definitely something you don’t want to miss out on. According to us, Italian food is very reasonably priced so go ahead!

Total cost of food: € 871,80

▶️ Discover a selection of must try dishes when in Rome.

Drinks

We made sure to sample a variety of cocktails, wines, and other drinks during our trip. The total cost for this came out to € 208. This includes some fancy cocktail bars (some even required a membership and came with your own personal waiter) and lesser known wine bars. We almost always ordered a small bite or bruschetta (and even once some sushi) with our drinks as well, so this inflated the price a little. If you don’t drink alcohol, you can (almost) completely ignore this expense, although we do recommend checking out the most charming bars in Rome – just order a mocktail and enjoy the views!

Total cost of drinks: € 208

Sightseeing

Rome is home to many world-class museums and attractions, and we made sure to visit as much as we could during our trip. Some highlights included in this category are: the ancient Colosseum, Forum Romanum, and visiting Vatican City (with the Vatican Museums). A lot of places are free to visit, like the Pantheon and the countless churches all over the city, which means you can do a lot with a small budget. We even took a guided tour of the Colosseum, which made this “category” a little more expensive. Booking your own tickets without a guided tour will definitely reduce costs, but be sure to do so well in advance as tickets are nearly always sold-out on the day. The total cost for museum admissions, sightseeing and other attractions came out to € 146,30.

Although this is a budget-report (and not so much a “tips and tricks” post), we do want to recommend visiting the Catacombs of Rome or, as we did, the Capuchin Crypt. The Capuchin Crypt is a series of chapels that are decorated with the bones of over 4 000 Capuchin friars. The bones are arranged in a variety of decorative patterns, including chandeliers made of bones and a coat of arms made of skulls. Breathtaking, and a little spooky, but definitely worth it! For the price you shouldn’t miss it either, it is only € 8,50 for a ticket.

Total cost of sightseeing: € 146,30

▶️ Read all about the must do’s when visiting Rome.

Other

This category includes miscellaneous expenses such as supermarket purchases and luggage storage. We bought: a bottle of wine to sip on our balcony, at least one bottle of water per day and some supermarket sushi for a late night snack. We also booked luggage storage for our last day via the app “Bounce”. If you, like us, have a long last day and nowhere to store your bags, this app is a lifesaver! The app lead us to a bike store with a super friendly bike mechanic that took care of our bags for the whole day. The total cost for these came out to € 46,10.

Rome is a great place to shop, with everything from high-end fashion stores to local markets selling handmade goods. One of Kelvin’s pants ripped during our time in Rome, which meant we had to buy some new ones. This, of course, led to us spending an entire afternoon shopping, so we ended up spending € 286,07 on shopping during our trip. This amount will vary highly depending on your personal tastes and how much you like to shop. But we do have to mention, Rome is a nice city to go on a shopping-spree!

Total cost of other expenses: € 332,17

Total of our 6 days in Rome

Here is our budget breakdown for 6 days in Rome in September 2022:

Total per category for the two of us

✈️ Flights: € 210,14
🛏️ Accommodation: € 899,70 (€ 179,94 per night)
🚕 Transportation: € 250 (€ 41,67 per day)
🍝 Food: € 871,80 (€ 145,30 per day)
🍸 Drinks: € 208 (€ 34,67 per day)
🏛️ Sightseeing: € 146,30 (€ 24,38 per day)
🛍️ Other: € 332,17 (€ 55,36 per day)

💰 Total excluding flights: € 2 707,97 | € 451,33 per day for 2 | € 225,66 per day per person
💰 Total including flights: € 2 918,11

Excluding our flight expenses, we spent € 451,33 per day for the two of us, which translates to € 225,66 per person per day. This is on the more expensive side. In retrospect, we would have been better off taking more public transportation and a little less cabs. We don’t regret our choice of hotel and meals, although in the future we might order one or two bottles of wine less (and maybe skip the shopping spree). 😉 You certainly don’t have to spend that much to be able to speak of a successful trip. A reasonable daily budget per person (mid-range) would be around € 150.

Overall, we had an amazing time in Rome! We are so glad that we were able to experience all that the city has to offer. While it was a bit of a splurge, we made memories that will last a lifetime.

Tips and tricks for saving money in Rome

Now that we have listed all of our expenses, we can give you some tips to save money:

1. Accommodation

Don’t seek accommodation near a tourist spot. Yes, the views are amazing and you’re close to everything, but since you’ll be doing a lot of sightseeing (which means: time NOT spent on your room) this is something you can make compromises on. In Rome, most places are pretty close to each other (exception: Trastevere) so don’t be afraid to chose a cheaper place that is a little further away from everything.

2. Transportation

Don’t be like us and Uber everywhere. Looking back at our expenses, this really was an eye-opener. We almost always choose the most convenient, easy way and that unfortunately means paying extra. Our € 250 on taxis could’ve very well be spent elsewhere (food, of course) and this doesn’t necessarily means less comfort or less time. Also, we paid more for our transportation in Rome than we did for our flight. 😳

3. Shopping

Although it was really nice to go shopping in Rome, we think that shopping is not one of Rome’s main “must-do’s”. Rome has a lot of other things to offer, so if you only have a limited time there, don’t go shopping (unless your pants rip).

Read our other budget breakdowns:

5 days in Barcelona: Budget Breakdown
5 days in Paris: Budget Breakdown
5 days in Budapest: Budget Breakdown
5 week US road trip: Budget Breakdown

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