Rome by night.

Rome Sex Guide advises where to find sex, working girls, prostitution, street hookers, brothels, red-light districts, prostitutes, erotic massage parlors, strip clubs and escorts in Rome, Italy.

Rome (Italian: Roma), the Eternal City, is the capital and largest city of Italy and of the Lazio (Latium) region.

Sex Scene and Prostitution

Rome's top security official suggested the city needs a Red-light district to keep prostitutes off the residential streets, because there have been so many complaints about prostitutes working the streets of the Italian capital.

In the Rome newspaper La Repubblica, Serra suggested a district like those Hamburg and Amsterdam "where one can exercise the world's oldest profession without disturbing the citizens."

"In Italy, prostitution is not a crime but this doesn't mean that you must continue to make believe (the problem) isn't there," Serra was quoted saying.

Prostitution is not illegal in Italy but pimping is and police have been cracking down on prostitution rackets they say exploit illegal immigrants, including many from Eastern Europe.

Italians have the unusual habit of preferring to consume the sexual act in a car, because its cheaper than going to an escort waiting in an apartment. However, women standing in streets not only feel more vulnearable, humilated, but are also exposed to dangerous violent criminals who will demand protection money from them, eg Albanian criminial gangs. Therefore, if you are a foreigner they will be sometimes afraid of you !

Italy had legal brothels until 1958, when they were closed and prostitutes took to the streets. There are an estimated tens of thousands of prostitutes in Italy. In Rome, among the streets where they are visible are a stretch near the Foreign Ministry and roads leading to a seaside suburb where many families go to picnic.

Proposals to legalize brothels again have foundered.

See also: Rome Escorts

Rome Female Escorts

Check out WikiSexGuide Adult Classifieds!

Red Light Districts

There is no real Red-light district in Rome, but there use to be one. Via dei Capocci is indeed a sort of Red-light district street, with many prostitutes working in the area.

As you walk past the whores you can hear them saying something like "ti vuoi divertire un pò?" (You want to have little fun?) or "che occhi belli" (beautiful eyes). They will also give you dirty and naughty looks so you will know they are whores. Average cost to have sex with a street whore in this area is 30-50€.

Pretty much all the prostitutes in Via dei Capocci are immigrants from Bulgaria, Romania and African countries.

In 2015, Rome's Mayor has approved a plan to create legal red-light district to Rome, so far we do not know wether it will be similar to the red light areas in Amsterdam or German cities. Rome Red light district should open in April and the legislation will allow prostitution in the EUR business district south of the city with the aim of reducing the number of streets currently being used for the purpose.

The council believes that by creating an official Red-light district in what is a largely non-residential area, there will be less chance of trafficking. This will mean that an estimated 70,000 to 100,000 women selling sex in Italy to around 2.5 million customers will be working in a safer environment, if this idea spreads to the other Italian cities.

The plans include proposals to provide ‘psychological support and health care’ to prostitutes on the designated streets, and clients of sex workers who work on non-designated streets risk fines of 500€.

Prostitutes and Sex Workers

Most of the prostitution activity in Rome happens in the streets. Street prostitution is the most popular form of prostitution in Rome. Private flat prostitution is also becoming very popular these days, because it is so easy for the prostitutes to post their ad online and then wait for a client to call. There are also illegal underground brothels and erotic massage parlors are becoming very popular.

Most prostitutes come from Eastern European and African countries.

Street Hookers

Unless you have a car and some local knowledge and are willing to take the chance on the cops busting you with a heavy fine or even maybe confiscation of the car. If you still want to go for it "Via Salaria" leading out/in of Rome is probably the best area in Rome to pick up young girls from Russia, Bulgaria and Romania, Sex with a street prostitute costs 30-40 euros in the car and its a quick affair but most of the girls are friendly and not more than 20 years old.

Where to find Street Prostitutes in Rome:

  • Via Prenestina driving outside of rome during the day
  • Tiburtina from Rebbiba station to about 10km outside of the ring at night time.
  • Viale Palmiro Togliatti has good selection of girls. Blow job in car costs 30€, fucking at girls own place 80-120€ and takeaway to your own hotel 100 to 200€. In the past year quality of street girls has gone down, more narcotics and othervise problematic girls.
  • Via Pontina need to drive outside the ring road to find street hookers. Mostly the streetwalkers are standing on the roadside where you can't miss them. Most of the girls are black Africans.
  • From San Basilio to Colombo and the Pineta di Ostia, by way of Boccea the Flaminia, the streets are lined - and not just after sunset - hundreds of young foreign women selling sex.

Strip Clubs & Lap Dance

Check out WikiSexGuide Adult Classifieds!

Here is a list of strip clubs in Rome, Italy. Please fill in alphabetical order. All of these premises may not be open anymore. Some of the gentlemen´s clubs only offer striptease and lapdance, but the other will also have take out girls.

  • Armony club, Via Concordia 44 (Piazza Zama - S. Giovanni)
A famous Private Club situated in the S. Giovanni. The Club is divided into several sections, a discoteque, a sex zone erotic show and a dark room and free open bar.
  • Atlantide, Via Prato della Corte 1511 . (CASSIA)
Tel. 0633616997 – 340-7809548
Private club for couples and singles, the largest screen in Europe. Open every night. Friday and Saturday there is a party for couples and a buffet dinner for everyone. Sunday there is a Sexy Sunday for nudists and couple exchanges. Monday theres a Slip party and a trip as a prize for the best imagination.
Tuesday there's fetish and sadomaso.
  • Babilonia Club Privé, Via Mazzamagna 58 Marino (Rm) Tel 338 6692042 – 06 93547816
3 storey Villa with bar, music and discoteque with table dance and dance in cages. A dark room is at the disposal of the clients and private rooms. Dinners and buffet. In summer they offer an erotic terrace. Closed on Sunday.
  • Batik, Piazza Marianna Benti Bulgarelli 41
  • Blue Moon, Via dei Quattro Cartoni (CENTRUM Via Cavour) (Tel 064743936)
This is the only erotic theatre of Eva Henger in the Capital. Every day the porno stars of his club give shows in live dance, table dance and lap dance as well as showing video projections. Hours 16.00 – 1.00 am
Famous night club in French style, in the heart of Rome close to Trevi Fountain. 2 strip tease shows between midnight and 2:00. Warm atmosphere and soft lights with international Stars. Closed on sunday.
  • California Club, Via Lanciano 36
  • Champagne 2, Via della Caffarella 7
  • Cica Cica Boom, Via Liguria 38
  • Club Privè Araba Fenice, Via della Giustiniana, 781, Roma RM (Tel:0630362835)
A three storey villa which is immersed in a park. It has a Bar, a lounge and six bedrooms which are elegantly furnished and very hospitable, even though it is less mysterious than other Private Clubs of this kind. Web:
  • Degrado, Via Danti 20
  • Divafutura Fans Club, Via Sardegna 27
  • Elios Night Club, Via S. Martino ai Monti 51, Esquilino
  • Elite Fans Club2, Via Sicilia 57
  • Harem Club, Via Francesco Cilea 55
  • Hollywood Club, Via Lanciano 56
  • II club di Cicciolina, Via Del Tritone 132
  • Jessica Rizzo Discobar, Via Velletri 30
  • Lo Scambio, Vicolo S. Rufina 49
  • Meeting Club 2x2, 36 Arco Degli Acetari
  • New Age, Via A.Dulceri 30
  • No Limits, Via Montebello 102
  • Planet Multisex, Via Galletti 13
  • Viva Las Vegas, Via Appia Nuova 1279


Brothels are illegal in Italy, but there are many Private gentlemen´s clubs (Club Privé) in Rome, where you can find take-out escorts. Price to take a working girl with you from these premises is around 200 to 300€ and this gives you one of sex. Cheaper options is illegal apartment whore houses, where you can usually find 2-5 sex workers mostly from Eastern European countries. At these apartment brothels (Appartamento bordello or Casa aperte), sex usually costs 50 to 150€ depending the time and girls popularity. Most of these bordellos have basic rooms for sex and condoms are provided. Massage parlour business is also becoming more popular in Rome and there are many erotic massage salons where you can get a different type of happy ending example sexual intercourse or just a hand relief.

Example Via dei Capocci in Rome has some Case aperte (brothels).

Erotic Massage Parlors

Check out WikiSexGuide Adult Classifieds!

Massage parlor business is becoming more popular in Rome, but police is also trying to crack down the illegal business. Many Chinese operate in the erotic massage business and once a while police closes their body rub salons. Recently some massage parlours that sold sex were closed down on Velletri, Genzano di Roma and Neptune.

Where to find Massage Parlours in Rome:

  • Tantra Massage Rome, Via Carlo Mirabello 19 (P.le Clodio), Rome (Tel 3488782743)

Escort Service & Agencies

Check out WikiSexGuide Adult Classifieds!


Torture Garden is a popular BDSM party in Rome often held in Vicious Club (Via Achielle Grandi, 7a Rome), OS Club or at Qube. Club Rome has also fetish and bondage parties. Most Rome escorts also offer dominatrix and role playing as an extra spice, but these service always cost more than regular sex.

Swinger Clubs

Swinging is becoming more popular in Italy and especially in the capital city Rome. Most swingers clubs in Rome and nearby areas only allow couples and single women. Some of the Swingers Clubs also accept single men on certain days or if paid much higher entrance fee. You should always contact the Swingers Club before you go to the place and ask their entrance policies and rules. Most of the time you will have amazing time in Italian swingers clubs because many of the local girls can be very attractive and some tourist couples also visit these premises.

Swinger clubs in Rome:

  • Club Privè Araba Fenice

Transsexuals / Shemales

TG/TS/TV or CD Street Prostitution:

There are transexual hookers in a park close to Sheraton Roma (Viale Del Pattinaggio, 100 Rome,00144). You can find about 5-10 t-girls there every night. Transvestites and transsexuals in the park charge about 20-40€ for blow job and 30-60€ for fuck. Most of the trannies in the park are versatile, meaning they can be the receiving or active partner, but it is always recommended to negotiate before paying who does the work.

TG/TS/TV or CD Friendly Clubs and Other Premises:

You can also find drag queen shows and transvestites from Gloss @ L’Alibi, Via Monte Testaccio 44 & Grand Buffet, Via Celsa 6 clubs occasionally. Adult Cinema Ulisse (Via Tiburtina 354H) has sometimes transvestites.

TG/TS/TV or CD Escorts:

There are hundreds of Shemale and transvestite escorts in Rome, so you will definitely find the one you like. Transgirl escorts are usually local Italians or Spanish, but there are many other nationalities among t-girl escorts. Usually trans-girl escorts in Rome work independently from the private apartments and do in- and out-calls. Some of the transexual escorts work on the street prostitution areas same time while they wait calls to their cellphones and if they get a call, they will either receive their client at their flat or where ever the customer wants. Price to have sex with a shemale escort in Rome is about 80-150€ for 30 minutes and 150-300€ for one hour. Better looking ts-girls will always cost more and the service is also much better.

Gay and Lesbian

Most LGBT clubs in Rome require a ArciGay or ArciLesbian card. If you have this card most clubs will allow you entry for free, without it sometimes they may be forgiving but more often than not you will be forced to pay a small entrance fee. In Rome there are no truly dedicated gay villages. Instead, there are small gay establishments located throughout the city. They are relatively easy to find and you can go just about anywhere in Rome and find a club or sauna that suits your tastes.


  • Gloss @ L’Alibi, Via Monte Testaccio 44
Open Thursdays 23:30 - 05:00. Gloss is the gay night on Thursdays and features drag queen shows, hunky go-go dancers and DJs spinning house and commercial/pop music.
Historical gay club in the capital, at the other days club has a mixed clientele, gay, bisex and trans and large heterosexual following. Nice music, two floors, with a large terrace for summer nights. Tel: +39 6 574 3448,
  • Muccassassina @ Qube, Via di Portonaccio 212.
Muccassassina started off as a gay only party but soon became very popular with both straight and gay trendy/young crowd. The venue, Qube, has three dance floors and plays house, pop and techno. You can expect a long queue at the entrance. Traditionally the events take place only on Friday except for extra appointments (Halloween, Wordl Day for the fight against Aids, New Years, Once Night preholiday) (October – May). Open Fridays 23:00 - 05:00
  • Bears Invasion @ Classico, via Giuseppe Libetta 5 (Metro B: Garbatella)
Open Saturdays 24:00 - 05:00. Rome’s all-new furry Saturday night gathering from 4th October 2014. Hairy daddies, chubbies, muscle bears, wolves and chasers are all welcomed inside. Hard house and hard men fill the dance floor, 3 bars and darkroom.
  • Bear Mondays @ Rude Club, via Pietro Micca 7/a , Rome (Metro A: Vittorio / Manzoni)
Mondays 23:30 - 04:00. Famous weekly bear party in Rome (open from October – April). Bear Monday is now held at Rude Club (ex Micca), a venue that features two bars, dance floor, lounge area and bear play zone. This is the place to meet bear gays and their admirers. Free entry. Tel: +39 347 244 5810 |
  • *G I Am @ Planet Roma, Via del Commercio 36 (Metro: Piramide)
Saturdays 23:00 - 05:00. G I Am (which stands for ‘Gorgeous I Am’) is the biggest regular gay Saturday night party in Rome (October – June) held at dance club Planet Alpheus. This massive venue features 4 different type of rooms, each with a different sound. Mixed, gay and lesbian crowd. Tel:+39 340 753 8396
  • COCKtail @ Elle, +39 392 505 3438
Sundays 20:30 - 01:30. Dinner + dance. Every Sunday evening (December – May), mingle with the gay locals and join the exclusive buffet dinner, then party the night away with DJ’s and go-go boys. Admission 12€ includes buffet and one drink. The opening event for the 2014 – 2015 season was held at Soho Cafe @ via Appia Nuova – but check Facebook details for next event.
  • Butter @ Vicious Club, Via Achille Grandi 7/a , Rome | map
Thursdays 23:00 - 04:00 (once a month) New monthly gay dance party in Rome, usually taking place on a Thursday. Inspired by the New York club scene, Butter features a mix of 70’s and 80’s classics, but with an electro twist. Really popular with the young gay Romans. Admission from 5 euros. Tel:+39 6 7061 4349
  • Amigdala @ Animal Social Club, Via di Portonaccio 23 E (Metro: Tiburtina)
Weekend opening times 1st Sat from 23:00. On the first Saturday of the month (October – May), Animal Social Club hosts a gay night with electronic music, concerts, movies, exhibitions and so on.
  • Grand Buffet, Via Celsa 6
Dinner and disco for bears and admirers on Sundays. The buffet starts from 8-10pm, followed by drag shows and dance party with resident DJ playing pop, house & techno tunes. Always check venue page for next event and location . Sundays 20:00 - 03:00
  • Feel Unusual Club, Via dei Conciatori 7C (Metro: Piramide=
Feel Unusual Club is a cool nightclub that hosts occasional popular parties for mixed crowd. Tel: +39 328 198 7017


  • Coming Out, Via di San Giovanni in Laterano 8 , Rome (Metro B: Colosseo)
Open every day: 07:00-02:00. Located near the Colosseum, Coming Out is an institution in the Rome gay scene. This a bit pricey bistro bar is open all day and has various theme nights. Friendly staff and popular and busy in the evenings. Upstairs is a well known gay bed and breakfast offering good value for money, air-conditioned guest rooms. (Tel: +39 6 700 9871)
  • My Bar, Via di San Giovanni in Laterano 12 , Rome (Metro B: Colosseo)
Open every day 09:00 - 02:00. Gay bar/café with sidewalk seating close to the Colosseum, next to Coming Out. The café attracts a straight crowd during the day but is popular with gay customers in the evening. There is a small dance floor at the back where resident DJ spins great commercial house music. Karaoke nights and occasional gogo dancers. Tel: +39 6 4554 6842
  • Garbo, Vicolo di Santa Margherita 1a , Rome | map
Open Tue-Fri 22:00 - 05:00, Saturday & Sunday: 22:00 - 05:00, Closed on Mondays. Cute little gay cocktail bar in the Travestere district. Perfect for a quiet or romantic evening. Mixed crowd, both locals and tourists. Closed on Mondays. Tel: +39 6 5832 0782


  • Europa Multiclub (EMC), Via Aureliana 40 , Rome (Metro: Repubblica)
Weekdays 3:00 - 24:00, Weekends Friday 13:00 - Sun 24:00 open nonstop. Largest gay sauna (2,000 m²) in Italy. Europa Multiclub (also known as EMC) features a big steam room, Finnish sauna, a large hydro-massage pool, relaxing cabins with TVs, a video room, small gym, darkroom, bar and a café. This clean, well-maintained sauna attracts young and older men. The busiest time to visit is between 4-8pm on weekdays and Sundays. Some people complain about the staff, because membership costs 15€ and entrance cost 15€, so this is kind of a bad deal for tourists. Tel: +39 6 482 3650
  • Sauna Mediterraneo, Via Pasquale Villari 3 (Metro A: Manzoni)
Every day open 13:00 - 24:00. Gay bathhouse in the historic center of Rome. Sauna Mediterraneo has three levels and features a Finnish sauna, Turkish bath, relaxation room, maze, dark rooms, lounge area, video room, smoking room, café and massages services. The sauna is popular with a bear and bear admirers. Best time to go is late afternoon or early evening. Tel:+39 6 7720 5934
  • Apollion Sauna, Via Mecenate 59a (Metro: Colosseo)
Open every day 14:00 - 23:00. Gay sauna in the heart of Rome, just between the Colosseum and Termini station. Apollion features steam bath with chrome therapy, dry sauna, hydrotherapy, pool, video room, dark room, massage smoking room and bar. Massage service available. Tel: +39 6 482 5389
  • Terme di Roma Internazionale, Via Persio 4 , Rome
Open every day 12:00 - 23:00. Terme Di Roma is a relatively small mixed sauna located in the suburbs of Rome (a bit hard to find). Men only days are on Mondays and Tuesdays, otherwise mixed of all age groups. Features: sauna, jacuzzi / hot pool, relaxing cabins, dark room. +39 6 718 4378


  • Monte Mario, via Colli della Farnesina
This is a huge park on the hills of Rome: must enter from via Colli della Farnesina. Best on sunny days.
  • Via Appia Antica-Fioranello
Bushed area with ancient roman monuments. Cruising is best around 11am just in front of Ciampino airport, along Via Appia Nuova, outside motorway. Sometimes you can find rent boys.
  • Piazzale del Galoppatoio (Located near the top of via Veneto, right near the US Embassy)
There are a few of stairways in the park. They are the emergency exits for the parking lot, but are always locked. Gay and bi-sexual guys cruise around them and when they find someone they like, they head down in to the privacy of the stairway. Mostly college guys who are looking for a break from their studies, and studs looking for trouble. Very busy after dark, but sucks at daytime.
  • Il Buco
Nude sunbathing and cruising among trees. There are two or three beach establishments that are pretty much exclusively gay and mixed-nudist. Best during the spring and summer, but you can find someone everyday. Public transit directions: From Rome city center go to "Ostiense" railway station easy to reach by underground. Take the train to Ostia, get down at the last stop. Just out the station take bus to Torvaianica, ask for Capocotta beach. Car directions: from Rome take Cristoforo Colombo road to the seaside, at the seaside go south, pass all the gates on the right, after the last one try to park when you see the colorful rainbow flag. If you reach the Torvaianica sign you are beyond the right point.
  • Fuel Distributor on the GRA
Arriving from 'La Romanina', enter the first fuel distributor, keeping the right. Park in the big area near a little hill; in the night you have lighting in the park, so you can see people, but the hill is black. Open all day, but best in the night for no light on the hill.

Sexual Services for Women

Italy is a modern country, but many old-fashioned attitudes remain. Many tourist women will still hear guys whizzing or yelling sexual comments at them. If you are not interested on these playboys, just ignore them. Italian guy who picks up tourists won't waste his time if you ignore him, walk past, say 'no grazie' or ask to be left alone

Particularly if you have blonde hair or light skin you can expect a great deal of attention. You will automatically be seen as unusual and very sexy. Gigolos can be seen cruising around popular tourist attractions looking for rich and sexy foreign women.

Many Italian male escorts have ads online and offer sex for both men and women for 50€ to 200€ an hour.

Sex Shops & Adult Stores

Some of these erotic shops have adult cinema attached to them. Entrance fee to the adult theaters is around 10€ and sometimes you are allowed to go in and out multiple times a day. Many of the sex cinemas are popular among gay and bi-sexual men. If you are straight guy, just ignore they gays politely and you will be left alone.

  • Afrodisiaca, via Aversa 34 tel. 0645424927
  • Beautiful, Vai A. Neroni, 9 Tel. 066140422 - Tel. 0661520079 Viale Palmiro Togliatti 1561 tel. 064078636
  • Il Capriccio Sexy Shop, Roma (RM) via Zuccoli 63 tel. 0687137352
  • Red Passion, 00010 Fonte Nuova (RM) via degli Abeti 12-14 tel. 0690023982
  • Rouge et Noire, Roma (RM) via G.B. Ferrari 17 tel. 065214484
  • Sexy Shop Moment D'Amour, 04100 - Latina (LT) SS 148 Pontina tel. 0773258350
  • Sexy Moon, Via Nobel, 38 Tel. 065594376
  • Tentazione Sexy Shop, Roma (RM) viale Giustiniano Imperatore 179 tel. 065414570
  • Video Max, Roma (RM) via Conte di Carmagnola 12 tel. 06273286
  • Cinema Ulisse, Via Tiburtina 354H, Rome
Large cinema. Straight and gays, but occasionally transvestites.
  • Cinema Moulin Rouge, Via Corbino 23, Rome
Sex Cinma showing staight porn. Lots of gays and immigrant male prostitutes. Closes around 22:00.
  • Cinema Ambasciatori, via Montebello 107, Rome
Adult cinema near the Termini station.
  • Avorio, Via macerata 10., Rome
  • Palermo Cinema Orfeo, Via Maqueda, Rome
Cinema with straight and gay audience.
  • Cinema Avorio, Macerata 10, Rome
Adult cinema


If is recommended to rent a flat near the street prostitution areas, if you like to have sex with the prostitutes in the safer environment than in a car or park. Some hotels will give you a trouble if you bring a girl to your room at the night who obviously looks like a prostitue

Many of the hotels in the prostitution areas will usually get bad reviews online example Hotel Pulitzer Roma (Viale Marconi 905, 00146 Rome, Ostiense) has got reviews like "This hotel has lots of prostitutes hanging out in the nearby street at night time or So it is a good place to stay if you don´t want to walk far away to find a hooker.

See also: Global list of girl friendly hotels

Stay Safe

An Italian Carabiniere at guard duty in Monte Gianicolo

Rome is generally a safe place, even for women traveling alone. However there have been rape cases around the Roma Termini train station, so be careful especially at night time. There is very little violent crime, but plenty of scams and pickpocketing that target tourists. As in any other big city, it is better if you don't look like a tourist: don't exhibit your camera or camcorder to all and sundry, and keep your money in a safe place. Consciousness and vigilance are your best insurances for avoiding becoming a victim of a crime in Rome. Remember, if you are pickpocketed or victim of another scam, don't be afraid to shout, "Aiuto, al ladro!" (Help, Thief!) Romans will not be nice to the thief.

Members of the Italian public are likely to be sympathetic if you are a crime victim. Police are also generally friendly if not always helpful. Carabinieri (black uniform, red striped trousers) are military police, and Polizia (blue and grey uniform) are civilians, but they both do essentially the same thing and are equally good, or bad. If you are robbed, try to find a police station and report it. This is essential to establishing a secure insurance claim and to replace documents: the chances of it resulting in the return of your possessions are, however, fairly remote.

Rome is home to two rival Serie A football clubs, A.S. Roma and S.S. Lazio, and there is a history of conflict, and even rioting, between the two. Never wear anything that shows that you support either of them, especially during the Rome Derby (when the two clubs play each other): avoid even wandering into groups of supporters of the other club, or you may be subject to heckling or even confrontation. Play it safe and refrain from openly supporting either club unless you are very familiar with the rivalry. If you are a fan of a foreign team that is playing in Rome, be very careful as a number of supporters have been stabbed over the past few years.


Since Rome is incredibly popular as a tourist destination, a great deal of pickpocketing and bag or purse snatching takes place, especially in crowded locations, and pickpocketers in Rome can get pretty crafty. A 2010 study found that Rome was second only to Barcelona for pickpocketing of tourists.

As a rule, you should pretty much never carry anything very valuable in any outside pocket, especially the front pocket of your pants is one of the easiest and most common targets. Keeping your wallet in your front pocket or in your bag is far from safe. You should consider using a money belt and carry only the cash for the day in your pocket.

Also, beware of thieves—one popular technique that they use is to ride by you on a moped, slice the strap of a handbag with a knife, and ride off. They might also try to cut the bottom of your bag open and pick your wallet from the ground. Others will use the old trick of one person trying to distract you (asking for a cigarette or doing a strange dance) while another thief picks your pockets from behind. Bands of gypsy kids will sometimes crowd you and reach for your pockets under the cover of newspapers or cardboard sheets. It is generally a good idea to be extremely wary of any strange person who gets too close to you, even in a crowd. If someone is in your personal space, shove the person away. As one frequent traveller put it, "Don't be afraid to be a dick in Rome." It is better to be rude than to be stolen from.

Termini (the main railway station), Esquilino, bus line 64 (Termini to San Pietro), and the Trevi fountain are well known for pickpockets, so take extra care in these areas. On the Metro especially, pickpockets are extremely skilled.

Remember that hotel rooms are not safe places for valuables; if your room has no safe, give your valuables to the hotel staff for safekeeping. Even if it does have a safe, hotels normally warn that they have no liability unless items are deposited in the main safe.

Be aware of the danger and take the usual precautions and you should be all right.

Tourist scams

Read up on the legends concerning tourist scams. Most of them occur regularly in Rome and you will want to see them coming.

A particular scam is when some plainclothes police will approach you, asking to look for "drug money," or ask to see your passport. This is a scam to take your money. You can scare them by asking for their ID. Guardia di Finanza (the grey uniformed ones) do customs work.

A recent scam involves men working near the Spanish Steps, around Piazza Navona, and outside of the Colosseum. They approach you, asking where you are from, and begin to tie bracelets around your wrists. When they are done they will try to charge you upwards of €20 for each bracelet. If anyone makes any attempt to reach for your hand, retract quickly. If you get trapped, you can refuse to pay, but this may not be wise if there are not many people around. Carry small bills or just change, in your wallet, so if you find yourself in cornered to pay for the bracelet, you can convince them that €1 or €2 is all you have.

When taking a taxi, be sure to remember license number written on the card door. In seconds, people have had a taxi bill risen by €10 or even more. When giving money to taxi driver, be careful.

Be careful of con-men who may approach you at tourist sights such as the Colosseum or Circus Maximus. A car may pull up next to you, and the driver asks you for directions to the Vatican. He will strike up a conversation with you while he sits in his car and tell you he is a sales representative for a large French fashion house. He will then tell that you he likes you and he would like to give you a gift of a coat worth several thousand euros. As you reach inside his car to take the bag the coat is in, he will ask you for €200 for gas, as his car is nearly empty.

Around tourist sites like the Trevi Fountain, Colosseum and the Spanish Steps there are groups mostly of men trying to sell cheap souvenirs. They may also carry roses and say they are giving you a gift because they like you, but the minute you take their 'gift' they demand money. They are often very insistent and often the only way to get rid of them is to be plain rude. Do the best you can to not take their "gifts" as they will follow you around asking for money. Simply saying "no" or "go away" will get them off your back until the next vendor comes up to you.

Be wary of places to change currency. Read ALL signs before changing money. Oftentimes places set up just for currency exchange will add as much as a 20% service fee on all money being traded. The shops near the Vatican have especially high service fees, whereas places near the Trevi Fountain will be more reasonable. The best bet is to change enough money before you leave your home country. There are few places around the city that are under the table and are just interested in American money. These places charge no service fee.

The best advice to avoid scams is to get way from anyone that you have never seen before who starts talking to you.


In an emergency, call 112 (Carabinieri), 113 (Police), 118 (medical first aid) or 115 (firemen). Carry the address of your embassy or consulate.

On anything else you may need for your rome holiday, you can contact the official help line of the Minister of Tourism 039.039.039. From Monday to Sunday, from 9.00 to 22.00, in seven languages seven days a week.

See Also