Planning your trip to Italy and flying to Rome and wondering if you can buy a prepaid sim card on arrival at Rome Airport? Don't waste money on high roaming charges or slow overseas data roaming plans. This is a complete guide for buying a prepaid sim card on arrival at Rome Fiumicino International Airport (FCO) in 2024.
Find out where to buy a prepaid sim card at Rome Airport, up to date prices as per January 2024, info about the best e-sim cards for Italy, the best 4G/5G network, my recommendation and everything else you need to know about buying a sim card for your trip to Rome.
Writing guides for the best ways to stay connected when traveling became a passion as it is the first thing when planning my trip to a new country.
I started documenting all my travel tips for fellow travelers to save money and now on Traveltomtom you can already find more than 200 sim card guides from all over the world. As part of my journey to visit every country in the world I constantly get to new countries: Budapest, Dublin, Oslo, Vienna, Dubai, Cape Town, Riyadh, Hong Kong, Bali, Bangkok, Brazil, Colombia, China, Philippines, Egypt and many more.
Traveltomtom also wrote specific Milan and Venice sim card guides and of course a complete guide for buying a prepaid sim card for tourists in Italy in 2024.
If you are more interested in using e-sim cards when traveling to Rome then check out Traveltomtom's comparison of the best e-sim cards for traveling to Italy in 2024.
So when planning your next trip abroad make sure to come check out Traveltomtom for the latest prepaid and e-sim card advice. Bookmark me to help you save money.
Touristy or not! Who cares, this is Rome, one of the most awesome cities in the world. I have been to Rome multiple times and even after visiting more than 150 countries and uncountable big cities, I still think that Rome is a world apart. SIMPLY GORGEOUS!
Why buying a sim card for Italy
Yes, your hotel has free WiFi and so do the restaurants and bars in Rome, but do you want to rely on others? What if the signal in your room is weak or the WiFi is so slow you can't even upload an Instagram story? Also keep in mind that public WiFi is an UNSECURED connection.
Disconnecting is the new luxury and I totally agree however, not in a city! Ordering an Uber on the streets to get back to your hotel, getting directions from Google Maps following a walking tour, finding tourist attractions in Rome, searching for a nearby restaurant with good views and so on. I can come up with a dozen reasons why being connected to the internet makes traveling in Rome much more convenient.
Buying a sim card at an airport in Europe won't get you the best deals unfortunately, but by all means it is the easiest and fastest way to get a local sim card. You just pay a little extra for this convenience.
When not a fan of swapping sim cards and changing numbers you can opt for a pocket WiFi. These portable WiFi devices are a great way to get internet while traveling, but I am not a fan. Click on the link to read my HONEST review.
Another great alternative these days is an e-sim card. Meaning you order an e-sim card for Italy online and you will receive a code on your mobile which you enter and it gives you access to a 4G/5G mobile network in Italy. New technology that does not involve swapping physical sim cards.
More about buying e-sim cards for Italy in the link where you will find my complete guide with everything you need to know about using e-sim cards for traveling.
Traveltomtom recommends buying a Vodafone prepaid sim card on arrival at Rome Airport. For €35 EUR ($39 USD) you get 30 GB data in Italy, including 5 GB data for for EU data roaming. It is not the best prepaid sim card deal for Italy, but the best you can get at Rome Airport.
Keep in mind that if you buy a sim card at Rome city center you can get a prepaid sim card with 100 GB for €20 EUR ($22 USD). Therefore I am hesitant telling you what is the 'best' sim card at Rome Airport. Prices for sim cards at Rome airport are obviously tourist prices.
Check out my complete guide for buying a prepaid sim card in Italy in 2024 for more info about the best sim cards for tourists.
Traveltomtom also recommend e-sim cards for traveling to Italy. In fact when you have an e-sim compatible phone it is my first recommendation. It just takes 2 minutes to arrange everything and as soon as the plane lands you are already online and enjoy a data connection on your phone.
Check out Traveltomtom's complete guide with everything you need to know before ordering an e-sim card for Italy in 2024, including a comparison of the best Italy e-sim cards.
Another great alternative is ordering a world sim card for travelers with global coverage. Traveltomtom compared and reviewed the best international sim cards for traveling the world in 2024 and found out that some international sim card deals are great for traveling to Europe and cheaper than buying a prepaid sim card at Rome Airport.
Best e-sim cards for Italy
The easiest way to stay connected when traveling to Rome in 2024 is an e-sim card. You order an e-sim on the internet and you arrange everything within just a couple clicks.
You order an e-sim card for Rome on the internet, you receive a QR code, scan it, follow the simple steps and within less than 2 minutes you have a Italy e-sim card installed on your phone.
Upon arrival in Rome it automatically connects you to an available network and you enjoy data on your phone pretty much when the plane lands.
Make sure your phone is e-sim compatible before ordering an e-sim card for Italy.
For much more details and answers on all FAQ about e-sim cards check out my complete guide with everything you need to know before ordering an e-sim card for traveling to Italy.
Airalo is a trusted e-sim provider that sells e-sims from pretty much every country around the world. Check out the Airalo e-sim card deals for Italy in 2024:
- 1 GB data for 7 days = $4.5 USD
- 2 GB data for 15 days = $8 USD
- 3 GB data for 30 days = $10 USD
- 5 GB data for 30 days = $14.5 USD
- 10 GB data for 30 days = $24 USD
- 20 GB data for 30 days = $33 USD
Click here to directly order an Airalo e-sim card for Italy.
Always check out Airalo as they constantly have ongoing promotions. Just recently they had 50% off all their Italy e-sim card plans.
The above Italy e-sim cards from Mamma Mia operate on the 4G/LTE networks of Vodafone, TIM and WindTre. More info about the best 4G/5G network in Italy later... These e-sim cards are data-only sim cards valid only in Italy and calling and texting is NOT supported.
SimOptions is a very reliable e-sim provider and Traveltomtom has used SimOptions in more than 50 countries around the world without ever facing an issue.
SimOptions sells international e-sim cards. These e-sim cards are valid in all of Europe and beyond, come with free EU data roaming and include (unlimited) calling and texting. You can order these e-sim cards via SimOptions and some are even 5G ready.
- 15 GB data + unlimited calls in Europe for 15 days = $21.90 USD
- 10 GB data (5G ready) + $2 calling credit for 30 days = $24.90 USD
- 12 GB data + 30 minutes international calls + unlimited calls in Europe for 14 days = $29.90 USD
- 30 GB data + unlimited calls in Europe for 30 days = $44.90 USD
- 30 GB data + 120 minutes international calls + unlimited calls in Europe for 14 days = $49.90 USD
- 50 GB data (5G ready) + 120 minutes international calls + unlimited calls in Europe for 28 days = $59.90 USD
Click here to order an international e-sim card for Italy via SimOptions.
Nomad is a third recommended e-sim provider that sells Italy e-sim cards for tourists. Traveltomtom has tested and reviewed Nomad e-sim cards in more than 10 countries around the world.
Great thing about some of the Nomad e-sim cards for Italy is that they are *5G ready.
These are the Italy e-sim card plans from Nomad for 2024:
- 1 GB data for 7 days = $5 USD
- 3 GB data for 30 days = $8 USD
- 5 GB data for 30 days = $14 USD
- 10 GB data for 30 days = $19 USD*
- 15 GB data for 30 days = $27 USD
- 20 GB data for 30 days = $33 USD*
Click here to order an e-sim card for traveling to Italy via Nomad.
Before ordering an e-sim card for Italy make sure your phone is e-sim card compatible. For more info about using e-sim cards for traveling to Italy check out my guide for finding the best e-sim card for your trip to Italy in 2024.
You can also buy a physical sim card for Italy on the internet and get them delivered to your home address before your trip. Check out Traveltomtom's comparison and review of the best European sim cards for tourists in 2024 or order one directly online, through the link below.
Ordering an Europe sim card can be done in as little as two minutes. Check out all the options for buying a prepaid sim card for Italy via SimOptions. For $49.90 USD you get 30 GB data in all of Europe.
Italy sim cards and free EU roaming
Good news is that all the prepaid sim cards in Italy have free EU roaming included. However, there are limitations so when buying a sim card in Italy and traveling onwards in Europe double check with your provider.
Free EU roaming means that the data, voice and text allowance on your Italy sim card is also valid when traveling to Amsterdam, London, Stockholm or anywhere else in Europe at no extra costs. For more info check my guide for buying a local sim card in Europe.
Arriving at Fiumicino Airport Rome
Fiumicino (FCO) is the major international airport for tourists visiting Italy and also called Leonardo Da Vinci Airport sometimes. Rome Airport is located about 35 kilometers outside Rome City Center and has two operating Terminals at the moment: 1 and 3, Terminal 5 is still being renovated as of beginning of 2024.
Most international flights arrive at Terminal 3, the largest and mostly used terminal for long-haul flights and also where you can find the sim card stores for arriving tourists.
Arriving at Rome Airport is pretty straight forward and you will easily be guided by the signs. The arrival halls is rather small.
Later also more about how to get from Rome Airport to the city center.
Where to buy a sim card at Rome Airport
Arrival Hall Terminal 1
When arriving at Terminal 1 I have bad news for you. I checked around and could not find any shop in Terminal 1 that sells prepaid sim cards for tourists. When I asked the information desk for an Italy prepaid sim card the lady confirmed that you can only buy sim cards in Terminal 3.
Luggage belts and arrival Hall Terminal 3
After passport control you can buy a sim card at the luggage belts but at the luggage belt there is only Vodafone store.
In the arrival hall at Rome Airport there is another Vodafone store and also a TIM store. The sim card stores in the arrival hall are very easy to find. When you walk into the arrival hall you turn left after the sliding doors and then the Vodafone and TIM shops are on your left hand side.
Transit passengers can buy a prepaid sim card for Italy in the main airport terminal. At the duty free shopping area next to the gates there is at the Wind Tre store near Gate B5. International arrivals can't get here.
Here is my vlog about my arrival at Rome Fiumicino Airport and my experiences buying a prepaid sim card.
Prices sim cards at Rome Airport in 2024
The below info and prices are updated as per January 2024. Prices are in Euros: $1 USD = €0.91 EUR and €1 EUR = $1.09 USD. You can only buy physical prepaid sim cards at Rome Airport. The sim card stores do not offer e-sim cards for tourists.
Vodafone Italy sim cards can be bought at the luggage belts as well as at the store in the arrival hall. They offer the exact same sim card deals, so it does not matter where you buy one. Just pick one that is not that busy if you really want to buy a sim card at Rome Airport. Because remember in the city center you find the same packages for only 50% of the price.
Vodafone offers 2 Italy prepaid sim card deals at Rome Airport:
- 30 GB in Italy (incl. 5 GB free EU data roaming) + 300 minutes = €35 EUR - $38.5 USD
- 70 GB in Italy (incl. 12 GB free EU data roaming) + 600 minutes = €55 EUR - $60.5 USD
Sim card deals with a lot of data, but very limited free EU roaming and not the best sim card if you will continue traveling in Europe after you visit Rome. With a Vodafone Italy prepaid sim card you can make use of the 5G network in case there is 5G available.
For more info about the 4G/5G network strength in Italy please have a look at my article about the best prepaid sim card in Italy in 2024.
Tim Store Arrival Hall
At the TIM store they sell 4 different prepaid sim cards for Italy:
- 15 GB data (incl. 6 GB Free EU Roaming) + 200 minutes = €30 EUR - $33 USD
- 70 GB data (incl. 8 GB Free EU Roaming) + unlimited minutes in Italy = €35 EUR - $38.5 USD
- 100 GB data for Italy = €40 EUR - $44 USD
- 200 GB data for Italy = €50 EUR (5G network available) - $55 USD
Unfortunately TIM prepaid sim cards do NOT allow you to use the 5G network, only if specified. There are no tourist e-sim cards available, only physical prepaid sim cards.
Windtre Italy store (transit passengers only)
Close to boarding Gate B5 there is a big bright Tre Italy (3) Store and they sell prepaid sim cards for Italy. They have data only sim cards and packages with calling minutes.
Windtre Italia at Rome Airport offers the following packages:
- 20 GB data in EU - valid for 3 months = €20 EUR - $22 USD
- 50 GB data in EU - valid for 6 months = €40 EUR - $44 USD
- 30 GB data in EU + 1000 minutes in Italy - valid for 1 month = €25 EUR - $27.5 USD
This Data & Call package from Wind Tre Italy is rechargeable online. For €9.99 EUR you get another 1000 minutes calling time and 30GB data. When it comes to Italy sim cards deals this is one of the better ones I have seen.
However, another reminder that if you are arriving on an international flight from outside Europe you won't be able to get to the Wind Tre store at Rome Airport. Only transit passengers and arriving flights from the Schengen Zone countries can reach this store.
Best sim card at Rome Airport in 2024
Looking at all the available Italy prepaid sim card deals at Rome Airport and leaving the Wind Tre sim cards out of the comparison then Traveltomtom comes to the conclusion that Vodafone is the best prepaid sim card at Rome Airport.
Vodafone sim cards at Rome Airport are €5 EUR ($5.5 USD) more expensive than TIM sim cards, but they offer 15 GB more data and the Vodafone 4G/5G network in Italy is much stronger.
Buying a prepaid sim card at Rome Airport is easy and it is the most convenient place to get connected when you travel to Italy, but therefore you also pay much more.
If you buy a sim card for Italy in Rome city center you will find sim card deals for €9.99 EUR ($11 USD) and you get 100 GB data. Check out my complete guide for buying a prepaid tourist sim card in Italy in 2024.
There are no e-sim cards available on Rome Airport. You can only buy prepaid sim card plans for tourists that come with a physical sim card.
If you rather get an e-sim card for Italy then you should check out Traveltomtom's guide with everything you need to know about using e-sim cards when traveling to Italy including a comparison of the best e-sim cards for Italy in 2024. E-sim cards already start from just $4.5 USD.
E-sim cards are just so convenient and easy to fix. You order online, no more visiting a sim card store in Rome on arrival and you are online as soon as the plane touches the ground. For $33 USD you get an e-sim card with 20 GB data.
Order a prepaid sim card for Italy online
If your phone is not e-sim compatible and you are not looking forward buying a sim card after a long haul flight then you can also order a physical prepaid sim card for Italy on the internet. An international sim card will be delivered to your home address and is already pre-activated. Simple, easy and reliable!
Check out the following prepaid sim card deals for traveling to Rome that you order via SimOptions.
1. O2 Go Card - $24.90
- 10 GB data
- $2 calling credit (no top-up)
- valid for 30 days
- valid in 34 countries
2. Three Data Pack - $24.90
- 10 GB data
- Unlimited calls/sms
- Valid 30 days
- Valid in 56 countries
3. Orange Holiday ZEN - $29.90
- 12 GB data
- Unlimited calls/sms in Europe
- 30 minutes worldwide
- 200 sms worldwide
- Valid 14 days
- Valid in 34 countries
4. Bouygues Telecom - $44.90
- 30 GB data
- Unlimited calls in Europe
- Valid 30 days
- Valid in 47 countries
- 30 GB data
- Unlimited calls/sms in Europe
- 120 minutes worldwide
- 1,000 sms worldwide
- Valid 14 days
- Valid in 34 countries
Click here to order an international sim card for Rome directly via SimOptions or find more info in the link.
These international prepaid sim cards are for traveling in every country in Europe. A physical prepaid sim card will be delivered to your home address and you simply put it in your phone on arrival. Plug and play.
Also a last reminder that if your phone is e-sim compatible you can order an e-sim card for Italy through either Airalo, SimOptions or Nomad if your phone is e-sim compatible. No more swapping a physical sim card and you keep your own phone number from home also.
For everything you need to know about using an e-sim card for traveling to Italy click on the link to check out Traveltomtom's guide, including the best Italy e-sim card plans for 2024.
How to get from Rome Airport to the city center
If you are looking for the best way from Fiumicino Rome Airport to Rome city center then you have three options: bus, train or taxi. Taxi is of course the most expensive, but in some cases a great alternative, especially if you are with more people. Taking an Uber will cost you around €60 EUR, but an official airport taxi is cheaper: €50 EUR.
There are many busses leaving outside Terminal 3 that go directly to Termini Station in Central Rome. Prices for busses range from €7.90 to €10 EUR but all offer the exact same service. Just grab the one that is about to leave soon. Busses take around 45 minutes to 1 hour.
There is also a direct train service between Rome Airport and Termini station. Every 15 minutes a train leaves and brings you in 30 minutes to Rome Termini. This Express train cost €18 EUR ($20 USD) one-way in 2024.
Meaning if you are with 3 people it makes sense to just take a taxi. That is what my friends and I did when we visited Rome this summer.
Looking for a Rome itinerary? Check out my friends blog with all the tourist spots.
I hope all this information about buying a sim card at Rome Airport and how to get there and back was helpful. If you have any questions please leave me a comment below or check out my Instagram profile @traveltomtom.
Be careful as it could cause some serious wanderlust. As per January 2024 I visited more than 155 countries on my road to visit every country in the world.
Enjoy your trip to Rome!
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