How to be a native in Rome (or at least not a jerk!)

  • Rome the Eternal City is full of expectations for you and strangely enough for your host.
  • Here are some light hearted tips to hopefully make your stay a little more “Roman”.


Romans do not do the big breakfast rather they go for a sugar and caffeine rush. We will call that cake and a coffee.

Typically you will pay around €2 for a brioche and expresso if you stand at the counter or take it away, double if you take a table.

To me the worlds most delicious coffee is served in Italy be it Americano, expresso or cappuccino.

Do remember tho Cappuccino is only for mornings (don’t ask me why?????) if you order it after dinner at best you will be looked at as if you are dumb and certainly very unlikely to get one.


So to dinner.

Food is bigger than religion to Italians and they tend to eat in a joyous but peaceful way.

When in a restaurant all their cares and problems seem to disappear. Even when you see business people dining they seem to forget work and just chat happily.

Romans want you to enjoy food also so please leave you problems of the day outside the restaurant and enjoy your food as a joyful almost religious experience. If you choose wisely you will have some of the best meals of your lives.


Some things not to do.

Don’t use restaurants that employ people to pull you in. Look for places with many Italians eating.

Don’t expect fast service you are not ordering a Big Mac! Allow plenty of time and enjoy the whole experience.

Don’t send food back for more salt or spices, the chef may kill you!!!!!

Tipping is not compulsory or expected. However if you tip a couple of Euro is quite appreciated after a dinner.

Buon Appettito!


So to getting there.

Arriving into Rome from the airport could not be easier.

Train, Bus or taxi. All cheap by international standards.

Prices Approximate. Bus €5. Train €12. Taxi you will see near the end of my next little story.

So we have all met one in our lives while on vacation.....The big mouthed know-it-all jerk.

Yep the guy who earns more, does more, been more than all the rest of us.

I met him in Rome. Somehow I got stuck with him and his family.

He was very soon on his favourite vacation subject which seemed to revolve around being very loud and obnoxious about something until the price is reduced.

He had beaten the hotel manager into submission over the room size and got a 50 bucks reduction.

Same in a restaurant that could not cook his steak right 50 buck reduction.

But listening to all this rubbish and now with quite a few people in our office also unable to not hear this conversation I had a feeling this guy was not the sharpest knife in the drawer.

I asked him a simple question. “How did you come to Rome from the airport”

“Taxi” he replied.

“How much?” I asked.

“€350 but he was a great guy so I gave him a straight 4”

Now in my position I could not laugh but the rest of the room did.

The outside doors of all Rome taxis have large signs with the fixed price for the airport.

WHICH WAS THEN €48!!!!!!



More next week.