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Transportation Rome or Rome Airport to the Amalfi Coast and Sorrento

A very common question is how to most efficiently travel from Rome to Sorrento or towns along the Amalfi Coast without spending around 400 Euros for a private transfer.

Here I will lay out the alternatives, some of which are seasonal, others year-round. But I will start out from Rome FCO Airport, for the benefit of those travelers going directly from plane arrival in Rome to the area.

FROM ROME FCO AIRPORT TO CENTRAL ROME (for onward connection to Sorrento and Amalfi Coast)

1. By airport train: Trenitalia runs an unreserved airport train nonstop from Rome FCO to Roma Termini Station every 15-30 minutes, travel time 32 minutes, 14 Euros, where travelers can connect to frequent high-speed Trenitalia or Italo Treno trains to Naples and Salerno. One child under the age of 12 years, 1 day travels free on the airport train for each paying adult, and all toddlers under the age of 4 years, 1 day travel free regardless of the number of paying adults. This airport train is guaranteed even during rail strikes. You must validate the paper ticket for the airport train before boarding (you do not need to validate the ticket for the onward reserved train). You can purchase tickets for both the airport and the connecting reserved high-speed train (for travel on Trenitalia, not Italo Treno) at the airport train station, where you will find both electronic ticket machines and manned agent windows. If you choose to use one of the travel agencies at the airport, you will pay a small surcharge. The ticket for Italo Treno (if not purchased electronically) must be purchased at Termini Station or from the travel agency at the airport train station.


2. By airport bus: There are currently four airport bus operators from Rome FCO to Roma Termini Station, with roughly hourly departures taking around 60 minutes and costing around 6 Euros, useful for connections to the Trenitalia and Italo Treno high-speed trains to southern Italy departing from Roma Termini. These buses depart from the bus bays at the far end of Terminal 3 arrivals level, within sight of the airport train station. I recommend buying the ticket from the bus driver and NOT in advance, so as to take the first available bus. Tickets of the various bus operators are not interchangeable. The bus drops passengers outside of Termini Station. The airport bus is handy only to save money; otherwise, the nonstop airport train to Termini Station is twice as fast and usually more punctual.

www.tambus.it (Via Giolitti side of station)
www.sitbusshuttle.it (Via Marsala side of station)
www.terravision.eu (Via Marsala side of station)
www.romeairportbus.com (aka Schiaffini; Via Giolitti side of station)

Connection in Rome: You need to allow at least 15 minutes connection time between the actual arrival time of the inbound airport train and the scheduled departure time of the outbound train to southern Italy. The incoming airport train may not be punctual. If you are taking Trenitalia to southern Italy and miss the reserved train owing to a late-arriving airport train, rest assured that you are "protected" as long as you have a minimum 15 minutes official connection time at Roma Termini. You must request a switch to a later-departing Trenitalia train to your destination from the mobile desks in front of the high-speed tracks at Roma Termini, without standing in line at the manned ticket sales windows. Do not simply board a later train without getting your reservation changed. Also be aware that the arrival times of the airport buses are very approximate (they can get caught in heavy street traffic), so you really need to allow greater connection time to the onward train. Obviously, you’ll need even more connection time if you want to purchase food or beverages to take on the train with you to southern Italy!


Please read the Travel Note - Rome to Naples Train Choices.


If you’re considering purchasing an ELECTRONIC ticket in advance at the regular fare for travel on a RESERVED fast train from Rome to Naples or Salerno, out of fear that you won’t find seats at the last moment, you should know that this is rarely true. Only occasionally will you not get your first or second choice of trains, and these run at least every 60 minutes between Rome and Naples.

You need to be aware that if you do buy an electronic ticket in advance, you will FORFEIT the ticket if you MISS your reserved train by MORE THAN ONE HOUR (or two hours in the case of Italo Treno). Worse still, the discounted promotional tickets for these trains (e.g. Trenitalia “Economy” and “Super Economy”) have no grace period, even if you miss the reserved train by only one second. Thus, you also incur a forfeiture risk if you buy an electronic ticket for these trains in advance as a way to save money.

You might consider taking this risk only if you give yourself a conservative cushion of time, and if you can save at least 50% of the regular fare for the reserved train. That way, the amount of potential savings is equal to the amount forfeited if you miss the train.


The most common solution is to take the UNRESERVED Circumvesuviana commuter train from the underground platforms (called “Napoli Garibaldi”) which takes up to 65 minutes with many stops. Trains run every 30 minutes from early morning to around 21:00. The fare is currently (April 2017) 3.60 Euros, and you must validate your ticket as you pass through the turnstyle leading to the platforms. Tickets cannot be purchased electronically. You may not break your journey.

Bear in mind that many of the trains don't have air conditioning, and they can be notoriously crowded during commute hours. There is no dedicated space for luggage, and you need to keep your bags very close to you at all times. Beware of pickpockets and people seeking to “help you” find or board the train. They are looking for a big tip. Allow at least 15 minutes connection time from your arriving train.


Circumvesuviana train

From April 15 through October 15, there is a useful alternative to this crowded train: it’s called the CAMPANIA EXPRESS tourist train, and it also leaves from the same underground platforms. There are only a handful of trains per day, and the fare is a steep 8 Euros, but you get a guaranteed seat and air conditioning. The train will be much less crowded, and generally much more pleasant.

There is also the option to travel by hydrofoil from Naples to Sorrento, but it’s an expensive, circuitous journey which may not be worthwhile for most people. First, you need to get to the Naples Beverello Dock by taxi, bus or tram. Once at the dock in Sorrento, you need to take a taxi or bus up the hill to the central district. The hydrofoil is very expensive and there are not many crossings.

My honest opinion is that it is so much more practical to go by train, especially if you can take the CAMPANIA EXPRESS or the Circumvesuviana outside of commute hours. Once in Sorrento, you can walk from the train station to many hotels in town. Also, from the station you can connect to the SITA buses to Positano, Praiano and Amalfi. The hydrofoil, however, is decidedly more scenic, at least on a nice day (no point in taking it during bad weather).



There are essentially two options:

1. Ferry: From April 1 through October 31, walk 800 meters from the Salerno train station to the landing dock of the Travelmar ferry boat off of Piazza della Concordia (straight out the station front doors in the direction of the waterfront). Allow a full 10 minutes to complete this very easy, flat walk along asphalted sidewalks. Take the ferry boat to Amalfi (35 minutes, 8 Euros). Be certain that your train gets into Salerno in time for the last boat to Amalfi (boat departure times may vary from shoulder seasons to peak summer months), or you will need to proceed on to Amalfi by SITA bus.

I DISCOURAGE buying the ticket electronically in advance, because it’s prudent to maintain maximum flexibility to account for a number of contingencies such as bad weather and a late arriving train. I recommend purchasing the ticket from the kiosk at the dock. You can bring heavy luggage on board with you for a small additional charge.

Before accessing the dock area, you can purchase ice cream or pastries at “La Madrega Gelateria e Frullateria”, along the Lungomare, at the corner of Via Mauro Clemente leading from the Station, just before crossing the busy road (Lungomare Marconi) to get to the boat dock. A few steps west from here is “La Madrega Gastronomia-Primi Piatti” where you can get a cafeteria-style hot meal, and further still (at the next street corner going west, Via Giacinto Vicinanza) is a pizzeria (“Pizzicorio Pizzeria-Rosticceria-Trattoria”).

Across the busy road, notice the covered bus stop. This is the spot where you get off the SITA bus RETURNING to Salerno from Amalfi. It’s also the spot where buses to PAESTUM stop. Beyond the bus stop is a monument (tall column surmounted by a statute). Beyond the monument is the path leading to the ferry dock.

BEWARE: The ferry boats are subject to cancellation during inclement weather, and some boat departures may be curtailed at the tail ends of the service season (early April or late October). It’s always best to telephone the boat operator if the weather is bad, to verify departure times and to avoid an unnecessary walk to the dock. Use your cell phone, if available.


2. SITA Bus: From November through March (when the ferry boats don’t operate), and indeed at other times as well, you can choose to take the hourly SITA bus (unreserved seats) from the Salerno train station to Amalfi (75 minutes; 2.20 Euros or 8 Euros for 24-hr ticket). Purchase the ticket at the newsstand inside the station foyer. Board the bus in the square in front of the train station. Note that this same bus drops passengers at Vietri sul Mare, Cetara, Maiori, Minori and Atrani before terminating the run at Amalfi (the fare is only 1.20 Euros to Vietri or Cetara).

If you plan to use the SITA bus again along the Amalfi Coast within 24 hours, you may save money by purchasing the 24-hour bus ticket for 8 Euros (the 3-day ticket has been discontinued). You must validate the ticket on board the bus on its first use.

Heavy luggage should be placed in the under floor luggage compartment. The bus makes a couple of stops in Salerno before heading up the hill to Vietri. Sit on the left side (facing the driver) for the best views. If you need a coffee break before taking the bus, there is a Chef Express café/bar next to the travel agency, walking to your LEFT as you exit the station.


Overnight in Salerno: Want to spend a night in Salerno before proceeding along the Amalfi Coast? The Hotel Plaza, smack in front of the Station and steps away from the Lungomare, is the handiest place (although lacking in charm). There are also many bed and breakfast locations going in the direct of the Centro Storico (1 kilometer west of the Station), although you would want to reserve these in advance during the travel season.


Take the SITA bus from the Salerno train station to your destination (there are three stops in Maiori along the waterfront). Don’t forget your luggage in the hold, otherwise it will end up in Amalfi!

From April through October, there are also ferry boats from the Salerno Concordia Dock to Cetara, Maiori and Minori (proceeding on to Amalfi), which shortens the trip only slightly. These boats are operated by the same company which runs the ferry boats to Amalfi and Positano.


Take the hourly SITA bus from Amalfi up the hill to Ravello (25 minutes; 1.20 Euros or 8 Euros for the 24-hour ticket). A taxi will cost 30 Euros. If arriving in Amalfi by ferry boat, it’s a short walk along the waterfront to the bus stop to Ravello. If arriving in Amalfi by SITA bus, it’s an extremely short walk (within visual sight) across the large parking lot to the bus stop to Ravello. The bus to Ravello often has standing room only (if that). From mid-April through mid-October, you can also take the privately operated red sightseeing bus every hour for 5 Euros, which will be much less crowded than the SITA bus.



Arriving in Amalfi by ferry boat from Salerno (April through October only), you can connect to the hourly SITA bus bound for Sorrento, which stops in Praiano (25 minutes; 1.20 Euros). A taxi will cost around 30 Euros.

Note that another solution, available year-round, would be to travel from Rome to Napoli Centrale by fast train, then take the half-hourly Circumvesuviana commuter rail (unreserved seats) to Sorrento (or the CAMPANIA EXPRESS train, when running), then take the hourly SITA bus from Sorrento (train station) to Praiano (75 minutes; 2.20 Euros). From November through March, the routing via Naples and Sorrento is the better of the two (because there are no ferry boats from Salerno to Amalfi).



From April 1 through October 31, the fastest solution is via Salerno rather than Naples, connecting to the seasonal Travelmar ferry boat to Positano from Salerno-Concordia Dock (70 minutes; 12 Euros). Make sure that your train arrives in Salerno in time for the last ferry boat to Positano, lest you be required to proceed by SITA bus to Amalfi and on to Positano.

From November through March, the most direct solution is to travel via Naples and Sorrento, ending on the SITA bus from Sorrento to Positano (as per above).



This range between 100 and 140 Euros, depending on destination and whether departing from Naples or Salerno. Notwithstanding, this is a vast improvement over 400 Euros for a private transfer from Rome to Positano or Amalfi.


Travelers (and especially those with mobility issues) should be delighted to know that there are one or two daily direct buses between the Roma Tiburtina BUS depot and Sorrento, with absolutely no connections or transfers. During the winter months, there is only one bus per day, increasing to two per day in the summer (usually at 7:00 a.m. and 15:00). From June through September, one of the two daily buses proceeds on to Positano, Praiano and Amalfi.

You get on the bus in Rome and get off at your final destination. You place your heavy luggage in the baggage hold. Marozzi is the bus operator. A rest-room stop is make en-route to Sorrento.

The bus to Sorrento runs year-round, takes 3 hours and 45 minutes and costs 19 Euros.

The direct bus to Positano, Praiano and Amalfi operates from June 1 through September 30, departs Rome at 7:00 a.m. and arrives at 11:30, 11:45 and 12:00 noon, respectively. A one-way ticket costs only 22 Euros.

You board the bus at the Roma Tiburtina BUS depot, which is located 300 meters from the Roma Tiburtina train/metro station. You can get there from central Rome either by taxi or by underground metro. However, the 7:00 a.m. departure makes this an option only for those people overnighting in Rome (and not connecting from the airport).


DISCLAIMER: While every effort has been taken to report current information as of the date published, all schedules, fares and prices must always be re-confirmed prior to departure, as they change from time to time. Discounted promotional fares described above are subject to cancellation, seasonal curtailment, modification, replacement with new fares, or subjection to further limitations. Train categories are not guaranteed, as different equipment is sometimes substituted. Travel times and schedules are subject to delay due to inclement weather, mechanical problems, track maintenance, and labor unrest. Ferry boats and hydrofoils are subject to cancellation due to poor weather. Features of discounted tickets are also subject to change. The foregoing discussion represents generalized travel information, and does not replace individualized travel planning.
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