Spanish steps RomeWhen travelling in Rome, you may feel helpless sometimes, with all the locals who speak hardly any English, and all that talk about pickpockets, beggars, thieves, dishonest taxi drivers… Well’ it’s true you should pay particular attention to all your belongings when going about the city, especially on board of the public transport, and never trust anybody too easily. After all it is foreign country and a strange city whose culture and way of life you don’t know that well.

Anyway, there’s no reason for you to waste your Roman holiday worrying about your every move and closing your mind from the people and city around you. The important thing is to be alert and, in case anything happened, to know how to find help and resolve the problems. So here are some essential numbers and addresses:

Tourist info points  RomeTo prevent getting lost, first of all get a good map; usually you can get one at your hotel. Plan your moves and find out about the buses in advance. With this you can get help at the Tourist information points (Punti di Informazione Turistica) for example in the square in front of the Termini station (Piazza dei Cinquecento) or on Via del Corso (Largo Goldoni). If you can’t find any, try the Tourist call center (+39) 06 8205 9127 that answers from 9.00 A.M. to 7.30 P.M. And if you’re really out of your way, you can get a taxi (one of the official city taxis) at the following numbers: 06 3570, 06 4994, 06 5551.

For information about the public transport you can turn to the ATAC-office for city transport at Via Volturno 65, even though often the reception staff of your hotel can help you more, and in English. The tickets can be bought in any tobacco shop or in vending machines.

In case you get robbed or need any kind of immediate assistance, the pPolice Romeolice forces in Italy consist of the Carabinieri and the Polizia, and you can denounce a stolen passport at any police station. The one where they are most used to tourists and able to help you in English is the police station of Via Farina near the Termini station. The number for emergency calls for the police is 112, but that should only be used in cases of emergency. In case of a robbery don’t forget to cancel immediately all your credit cards!

To call an ambulance use the number 118, and for less urgent cases it’s best to use the doctors appointed by your insurance company. You can also go to the emergency department of any hospital, for free, but be prepared to wait quite a while. The biggest hospital is the Policlinico (metro B, stop “Policlinico�).

For stolen or lost passports or any kind of help and support you caAmerican Embassy Romen always turn to your country’s embassy. For example the British Embassy is located in the center, at Via XX Settembre 80 (Tel. (+39) 06 4220 0001; out of office hours: (+39 06 4220 2603). The Rome American Embassy is on via Vittorio Veneto, 119/A (+39 06.46741), and the French consulate on Via Giulia 251 (+39 0688 064 37). The German embassy is on Via San Martino della Battaglia, 4 (Tel. +39 06 49 213-1) near the Termini station and the Spanish Embassy in Largo Fontanella di Borghese, 19 (Tel. +39 06 684 04 01).

With this “emergency kit� you should be fine, so now just go ahead and book your holidays. The hotel and hostel Des Artistes is located comfortably in the city center and has a helpful and knowledgeable staff who all do speak English!

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