Is it Worth Paying More for a Private Tour from Rome Sea Port? – RomeCabs

Buon giorno and welcome to Stefano’s RomeCabs, Rome’s leading company for Rome Sea Port Transfer and Tours.

Travelers sometimes ask if it’s worth paying more for a private tour from Rome Sea Port of Civitavecchia, when other options such as bus tours, taxis, and public transportation can be less expensive?

Sometimes costs can be measured not just in terms of money, but also cost of time, effort, convenience and risks of not making it back to your ship on time.

In this article we included the different options available to access Rome from Rome Sea Port of Civitavecchia so you may decide for yourself which option best suits you and your family.

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BUS TOURS

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Bus tours can be pricey per person if you are a family or group of 5-8 (at average 100 euros per person, if you are family of 8 a tour by bus can cost you 800 Euros, when a private tour costs only about 600 Euros), and unlike private tour vehicles that can access the historic center to take you right next to each site you visit, buses can’t access the historic center where all the must see attractions are.

Since 2019 tour buses are even further restricted from accessing Rome thus further reducing the number of buses that can operate. This means you visit less important sites because buses have to park outside the perimeter of the historic center leaving you having to walk up to several blocks to visit the few attractions that are possible to access by bus.
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Bus tours are also not flexible or personalized. Cruisers are obliged to keep up with large groups following around a designated guide that speaks into headsets the passengers wear.

It’s not an ideal experience to walk in file for blocks on end to access a single site, ears filled with the tour guide’s voice cancelling out the unique experience of hearing the local sounds of the city you visit, and no opportunities to stop and photograph or enjoy specific sites so you don’t break away from the group and get lost.

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TAXIS

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Taxis in Italy are white marked vehicles that run by meters.

They can be found at designated Taxi Ranks around the city, as it is not common to flag a taxi on the street like in New York.  Italy has ancient and historic cities, often with narrow streets and lanes with little or no space to “pull over” without stopping traffic completely. Therefore taxis are stationed at designated places where folks can go and take the first taxi in line.

From Civitavecchia Port, the official Civitavecchia Taxis can access the piers inside the port. Rome city taxis generally can only drop off passengers outside the port gates, from where passengers will have to use the shuttle bus to access the ships.

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Civitavecchia Taxis on Pier

Civitavecchia Taxis at the Pier

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Inconsistent (and pricey) taxi rates – from CIV to Rome / FCO Civi taxis can charge upward 200+ Euros for a simple transfer to Rome as they don’t have fixed rates.  

Rome taxis charge about 120 EUROS for a transfer in a small car for up to 4 passengers from Rome to Civitavecchia, but they are not known to stick to that price and often they charge higher rates to unsuspecting tourists.

On busy days such as during transportation strikes, bad weather, and peak tourism period taxis may not be so easy to find when needed.  Unnecessary taxi delays can be stressful, cause cruisers to miss out on precious sightseeing opportunities, or arrive back to their ship too late.
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TAKING THE TRAIN

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There are commuter trains that run between Termini Station and Civitavecchia with multiple stops along the way. Average travel time between Termini Station and Civitavecchia is about 1 hour 20 minutes.

However long or short the train ride may be to Rome, the train station is  NOT inside the cruise port or near the port gate, it’s in town about 30 minute walk from the cruise port gate.

Cruisers needing to go to the Train Station would need to first take a port shuttle bus to the main gate, and then a local city bus to the train station (and vice versa!).

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civitavecchia train station Cruisers waiting for Bus

civitavecchia train station Cruisers waiting for the Bus

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This long process can easily near double the overall time it takes you from the moment you leave the pier  until you arrive in Rome.
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If you are traveling with luggage pre cruise or post cruise, this can be a challenge, especially since the train station has underground passageways to access the different tracks which means travelers have to climb down and up a flight of stairs each time – difficult with luggage to say the least!

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Taking the Train to and from Civitavecchia

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Train strikes can make you miss out on visiting the places you wanted to and you are left stranded at the port all day.  

On transportation strike days we get inundated with calls from desperate cruisers trying to get from Civitavecchia to Rome, or vice versa. Unfortunately it is difficult and usually impossible to organize a transfer in the moment on already busy port days when availability is already limited, especially considering how far Rome is from Civitavecchia.

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READ: HOW THE TRAIN RUINED OUR CRUISE

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Train delays and missing your train can place you at risk of missing your ship on departure.

On Sundays, in August, and on certain holidays public transportation and commuter trains are few and far between. The commuter trains are in place to serve the commuting population who work in Rome but live elsewhere, it is not in place to serve the cruise port.

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Civitavecchia Station - Cruisers waiting for Train

Civitavecchia Station – Cruisers waiting for the Train

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LOCAL PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION

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Local public transportation such as buses and metros in Rome tend to be slow, crowded (unfortunately rife with pickpockets), sometimes malfunction, and subject to Transportation Strikes that often occurs several times a year – most frequently between spring and fall season which unfortunately also coincides with peak tourism seasons.

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Relying on buses and metros require advance planning and organizing the correct bus or metro route with the attraction you wish to visit, and then continue to organize and plan your next leg and so on in order to arrive back to Termini Station in time to catch your train to Civitavecchia in time so you don’t miss your ship.

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CAR RENTALS

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Car rentals free up cruisers to plan their own shore excursion, however rental cars can’t access most city and town ZTL zones (zones that are legally only accessible by registered local residents, public service vehicles taxis, and professional drivers like ours).

Entering a ZTL zone in central Rome or parking incorrectly can amount to hundreds of Euros in fines that the car rental company will seek to obtain from the renter.   

For example you would not be able to drive into Rome’s historic center that is a ZTL zone with a rented car. Parking is limited and hard to come by (and expensive!), and not conveniently located to the main attractions since you can’t access the historic center.

Renting a car also requires careful advance planning and distance/driving time calculations. Sometimes the calculations are not correct in the countryside on rural roads (Italians can attest to this when they rely on GPS to get them around country roads) if you access roads that are slow to drive on, or if you encounter traffic. Without being a local expert driver, you would not know the correct back roads and shortcuts to get you out of a traffic jam.

There is also a risk of getting lost as even the best GPS devices that lead drivers astray and into unknown areas. Some roads may be temporarily closed but not indicated on the GPS System. Italian drivers are unique… sharing the road with regular Italian drivers is not for the faint hearted and the uninitiated.   

While many cruisers have rented cars successfully, there is a certain level of risk and responsibility that the cruiser has to consider and properly prepare for because many cruisers have also had negative experiences self touring on a car rented for the day (we have some interesting and unfortunate stories shared by our past clients!)

Car rental is best suited for land trips with extended stays in wide and open spaces like Umbria and Tuscany,  with no ships to catch should you snag delays with traffic, a wrong turn, or a flat tire.  Car rental is not suited for Rome or similar large cities.

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PRIVATE SHORE EXCURSIONS BY CAR

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It is a fact that you see more by car on a private tour than by bus, train, car rental or taxi transfers because you have more options and access to important sites when touring by car.

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When booking a tour with us, you select the tour with an itinerary that interests you the most.

There is NO need for you to plan in advance, research attractions, organize the order you will visit them, etc…  This can save you days of pre-trip research and planning.

Our RomeCabs website is highly informative supplemented by photos and videos so you see and learn about the sites on our itineraries.  Best of all, you know what to expect to see and visit in advance.
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Your private shore excursions with Stefano’s RomeCabs are flexible.

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You can substitute some sites with others that matter to you more, you can choose to spend more time at some favorite sites and less at others, and tour at your own pace – which is ideal for families with small children or elderly with mobility issues and need more time and tour at a slower pace.
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Touring by car is relaxing and worry free.
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There is no extensive walking, no worries about how you will get from site to site. Your English speaking Driver will drop you off as close as possible to each site and explain what you are seeing and where you will be visiting.
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Our private tours relieve the stress of worrying how to get around on public transportation

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Getting on the correct train, metro and bus, not missing the bus, metro or train back to the ship….it’s a lot of worry and planning that can overwhelm your day.
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Touring by car is ideal during rainy weather and on hot summer days.

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Summers in Rome can be very hot with some summers hitting the 100 degree mark. Being all day in Rome in such intense heat (and the crowded public transportation is not usually air conditioned) can be physically exhausting.  

Not having to walk extensively in the rain during the often wet fall season or spring showers is always a special treat. Touring Rome while soaked and fighting your way through a sea of umbrellas on narrow sidewalks can be a challenge for many folks.

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WISH TO SAVE MONEY ON YOUR PRIVATE TOURS?

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Wish to have a group shared tour but with the benefit of a private tour?

You can create your own Privately Shared TourGroups with other like minded fellow cruisers to save the cost. It’s a great way to make new friends and save money!  You can be in charge of your tour, decide who can join your tour and the size of your group, and enjoy knowing your tour mates in advance as opposed to being placed in a van full of complete strangers that you may or may not have anything in common with.

You can plan the costs of your shared tours ahead of time since our  tour prices are agreed upon in advance, and everyone pays their equal share of the overall tour fee.
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Creating your own private shared tours is easy!
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Find out how:  PRIVATELY SHARED TOURS – WHY and HOW TO
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ALSO10 TIPS on Tour Sharing – your best Italy Shore Excursions!

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For more information on our Shore Excursions, as well as Civitavecchia Port Transfers, please visit our website below, as well as our sister company Stefano Rome Tours for a wider variety of tour itineraries.

Thank you very much and we look forward to showing you beautiful places in Italy!

We look forward to seeing you in Italy!

Stefano’s RomeCabs Team

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Romecabs Transfers and Tours

Romecabs Transfers and Tours

 

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