Expats moving to Rome are likely to become entranced by the imagery of the living, breathing ancient city. Magnificent ruins and foundations built on the rich fabled history that was once the centre of the world are immediately invigorating. Expats would be hard-pressed not to allow themselves to fall for regal Rome and its noble roots.
Living in Rome as an expat
If expats have not arranged a work permit and a job before landing, they may find Rome something of a challenging job-seeking environment. What's more, expats without a solid knowledge of Italian will not qualify for most positions and will be competing with a small contingent for limited job opportunities.
The city’s bureaucracy is notorious for being difficult to navigate, complicated and unapproachable. This can make seemingly simple tasks such as finding accommodation, registering children for schools and obtaining identity documents exceptionally frustrating. Many basic operations are racked with inefficiency while its appeal as a year-round tourist destination makes it quite expensive.
That said, expats that have moved to Rome and never left will insist that the worries of day-to-day life can easily be washed away in the magic of the metropolis. With excellent public healthcare, a fantastic food and wine culture, and the residents’ appreciation for art and beauty make for endless opportunities of things to see and do. This is coupled with the fact that getting around the metropolis is easy as the public transport is both comprehensive and affordable.
Cost of living in Rome
Rome's incredible popularity as a tourist destination inflates the cost of living, and expats will likely come to be as frustrated with the endless stream of tourists as locals are. With that all said, it is much less expensive than many of Europe’s other capital cities, such as Paris or London, and expats moving to Rome will encounter an economy that is generally stable. This means prices tend not to fluctuate dramatically from one year to the next.
Expat families and children
A wonderful city to raise a family, Rome has plenty to keep the kids occupied. An abundance of interesting museums, most of which are free for kids, as well as parks, theme parks, hiking trails, and more, are sure to keep expat families busy in their free time. There is a fair share of schools in Rome to choose from, including international schools, but like anywhere else in the world, these vary in quality, price and curriculum. So we recommend parents consider these factors carefully when they start researching.
Climate in Rome
Rome enjoys a Mediterranean climate, with mild winters and hot, dry summers. January is the coldest month in Rome, and July and August the warmest. The weather in Rome during summer can be uncomfortably hot, with temperatures often exceeding 95°F (35°C), while winter is mild, with the average temperature in December hovering around 55°F (13°C).
In light of the pros and cons of relocating to the Italian capital, expats who love an adventure and who can keep marvelling at the wonder of the age-old city and its surroundings, will certainly enjoy Rome and likely stay longer than anticipated.
►When relocating, expats should weigh up the pros and cons of moving to Rome
"I think to really penetrate the layers of the Italian society you really have to go the extra mile in understanding their culture and speaking their language". Read more about Ernesto's experience of living in Rome.
"I would recommend making friends with locals as well as expats – having a few locals as your devoted friends may well prove to be the key to overcoming obstacles when you have to address frustrating bureaucratic matters". Read our interview with Camilla for more.
Are you an expat living in Rome?
Expat Arrivals is looking for locals to contribute to this guide, and answer forum questions from others planning their move to Rome. Please contact us if you'd like to contribute.
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