Like many other popular Western European cities, many people consider Rome to be a tourist destination high on their bucket list. Nicknamed the Eternal City (for the empire believed to have no end), Rome blew me away with its deeply rooted history, iconic landmarks, architecture, delicious food, and cheap wine. Even though Rome is considered an expensive travel destination, if you’re on a budget, I have some good news for you. You can absolutely have a blast touring Rome no matter your budget. So as you plan your trip and estimate your travel costs, use this Rome budget breakdown as a guide. Also, don’t forget to jot down some other important Rome travel costs like groceries and metered parking.
Now before we jump into how much to budget for Rome, here are some important financial things you should know before you go.
Planning A Trip To Rome
What currency to use in Italy?
Italy’s official currency is the Euro (EUR). The Euro is also the official currency of the Vatican City. Similar to other Eurozone countries, Italy has its own banknote and coin designs.
You can use all major credit cards in Italy including Visa, MasterCard, and American Express. However, I recommend carrying cash as well. Smaller establishments may not accept plastic.
If your bank or credit card company requires a travel notification, set your travel dates ahead of time to avoid any inconveniences.
7 Day Rome Budget
Total Airfare from NYC to Rome: $72.86 USD
When booking my round-trip flight to Rome, I redeemed Delta Air Lines SkyMiles which significantly reduced my out-of-pocket travel expenses.
How To Use Your Delta SkyMiles
From the U.S., round-trip economy flights to Europe usually cost 60,000 SkyMiles. But since I booked my flights during a Delta SkyMiles Flash Sale, I saved 5,000 SkyMiles on my award ticket.
I booked my roundtrip award flight to Rome for 55,000 SkyMiles and paid $72.86 USD for mandatory taxes, fees, and charges. This included one free checked bag and priority boarding.
Coupling my SkyMiles with a flash sale not only saved me money (flights to Rome in the summer cost over $700 USD) but also a significant amount of miles! If you’re not in a rush to redeem your Delta SkyMiles, wait for Delta’s monthly flash sales for better redemption value.
Rome Budget Total Lodging: 310,34 € or $364.19 USD
Total Hostel Cost: 99,05 € or $111.58 USD
Total Generator Hostel Rome Cost: $32,85 € or $38.55 USD
One night at Generator Hostel Rome cost 26,35 € or $30.92 USD. This was for one non-refundable bed in a 4-bed female dorm. This did not include the mandatory city tax nor the charge to store my luggage.
- Lodging City Tax (mandatory): 3,50 € or $4.11 USD
- Luggage Storage: 3,00 € or $3.52 USD
My room had access to a small patio and a hammock. This was perfect for reading and getting work done.
Generator Hostel Rome also offers a buffet breakfast and daily happy hour. Weekly events include Pizza Social Night, Funk Fridays, Soundclash Saturday and Sunday Rehab.
Yellow Hostel Total Cost: 66,20 € or $73.03 USD
I also spent two nights at Yellow Hostel in Rome. It cost 27,60 € or $32.39 USD per night for a non-refundable bed in a 6-bed female ensuite dorm. This did not include the mandatory city tax which cost 7,00 € or $8.25 USD for two nights.
From 6:30 p.m.-7:30 p.m., Yellow Hostel offers guests a complimentary plate of pasta which is great for saving money on your Rome budget.
The hostel also has all sorts of tours and activities like bike tours, cooking classes, and vintage photo classes.
Total Airbnb Cost: 437,59 € (207,06 € per person) or $493 USD ($246.50 USD per person)
I booked five nights in a 2-bedroom and 2-bathroom Airbnb apartment near Vatican City with my best friend. We had the entire apartment to ourselves. It included a small kitchen, living room, balcony, and a stylish foyer.
We also paid 17,50 € (8,75 € per person) which covered the mandatory lodging city tax for five nights which was approximately $20.53 USD ($10.26 USD per person).
Rome City Tax
The Rome hotel tax is a mandatory tax for tourist. The hotel tax is charged per person, per night for a maximum of ten nights. It is not included in your bill or lodging rates so you’ll have to pay this separately when you arrive.
The tax ranges from 3,00 € to 7,00 € a night and it is based on the star rating of the accommodation.
Many other cities in Italy charge a similar hotel tax.
Rome Budget Total Transportation Cost: 73,00 € or $85.98 USD
Shuttle van from Rome-Fiumicino Airport to Termini Station: 15,00 € (cash only) or $17.66 USD.
Three Express shuttle-trains from Termini Station to/from Rome-Fiumicino Airport: 42,00 € (14,00 € each) or $49.46 USD ($16.48 each).
One-way metro rides: 9,00 € (1,50 € each) or $10.60 USD.
24-hour Rome metro: 7,00 € or $8.24 USD.
Rome Budget Total Food & Drink Cost: 134,10 € or $161.61 USD
Groceries Total: 6,50 € or $7.83 USD
Day 1 Food & Drink Total: 17,00 € or $20.48 USD
- Veggie Burger: 7,00 €
- Happy hour beers: 8,00 € (two beers at 4,00 € each)
- Tip: 2,00 €
Day 2 Food & Drink Total: 26,50 € or $31.93 USD
Breakfast: 5,00 € at Generator Hostel Rome.
The buffet breakfast at Generator Hostel Rome is available daily from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m. The buffet breakfast included boiled eggs, coffee, orange juice, two types of cereal (corn flakes and raisin bran), cheese, ham, and yogurt.
Dinner: 19,00 €
- Ravioli Burro e Salvia: 12,00 €
- Pinot Grigio: 6,00 €
- Tip: 1,00 €
Small gelato cone: 2,50 €
Day 3 Food & Drink Total: 36,00 € or $43.38 USD
Lunch at Habana: 12,00 €
Dinner at Tiorentina: 24,00 €
- Paccheri con Verdure e Mentuccia 15,00 €
- Beer: 6,00 €
- Service Charge: 3,00 €
Day 4 Food & Drink: 16,70 € or $20.12 USD
Breakfast: 3,20 €
- (2) Cafe Lattes: 2,20 €
- Croissant: 1,00 €
Dinner at Tonnarello: 13,50 €
- Tonnarello Cozze Pecorino: 9,00 €
- House wine (white): 4,50 €
Day 5 Food & Drink: 31,40 € or $37.84 USD
Breakfast: 1,20 €
- Caffe Latte: 1,20 €
Lunch: 22,00 €
- Fettucine Alfredo: 12,00 €
- White wine (house): 8,00 €
- Service charge: 2,00 €
Snack: 2,70 €
Dinner: 5,50 €
- Mushroom calzone
Day 6 Food & Drink Costs: 1,20 € or $1.44 USD
Breakfast: 1,20 €
Rome Budget Gifts/Souvenirs: 36,50 € or $43.98 USD
- Silver ring: 8,00 € (negotiated down from 10,00 €)
- Beer cup: 10,00 €
- Rosary beads: 14,00 € (negotiated down from 15,00 €)
- Polyester scarf: 4,50 €
Rome Budget Activity Cost: 44,00 € or $53.08 USD
Rome Activity Details
- Spanish Steps: Free
- Pantheon Admission: Free
- Trevi Fountain: Free
- Villa Borghese: Free
- Giancicolo Hill: Free
- Colosseum Guide: 5,00 €
- Colosseum Admission (includes Roman Forum and Palatine): 12,00 €
- Hop Off Hop On Bus Tour: 27,00 €
Rome Budget Final Thoughts
So how much did a trip to Rome cost me? Well, I spent $ 781.70 USD during my week in Rome. The majority of my Rome budget savings came from redeeming a free flight through Delta Air Lines’ frequent flyer program. Nevertheless, while in Rome, I kept costs low by enjoying most of the free activities that the city has to offer and by sticking to a budget of ~40,00 € a day for meals, drinks, and snacks. If you’re on a tighter budget, you can certainly spend less by skipping out on gelato and a glass of wine. Since eating out also adds up, eat out less and do more grocery shopping.
Lastly, I recommend walking as much as you can. Rome is the perfect city to roam endlessly and get lost. There are Roman ruins and beautiful parks and gardens everywhere. So even if you (accidentally) forget your purse or wallet at home, you can still have an enchanting time exploring the city.
Danielle is a travel finance strategist, writer, speaker and podcaster. She paid off $63,000 of student loan debt in 4 years, bought a house at 27 and has traveled to 25 countries. She refuses to let her financial responsibilities hold her back from living life on her own terms.