Rome’s public transport to be (more) bike-friendly

biciRomabus One of the recurring mysteries is why Italian companies continue to use slogans in English in a country where relatively few people know English and where only a very small number actually know it well. No harm done, of course, and “it is fashion” as the Romans say. So when you see the words “bike friendly” on a bus or subway car here don’t be surprised. It means what it says. As of tomorrow, August 4, and at pre-established hours, Rome’s transport company, ATAC, will be adding 18 bus, tram and subway lines, including those that go to the beach town of Ostia, to the few you that will already take you AND your bike.  There is also an icon, a red bike (in Italian the word is bici, pronounced bee-chee) on a white background. In the case of trains, it should (in Italy you never know) always be the first car.

Along with bus line 791, where you could already take your bike with you on Sundays, the new bike-friendly bus lines are are Atac 83, 118, 412, 673, 715, 772, 120F e 180F and TPL’s August lines, 232, 543 e 983-

Jumbo trams, the 2, the 3 e the 8, are also supposed to now be bike-friendly as will lines 5, 14 e 19 in August. The new regime will also apply to all trains to Ostia on weekends for the entire month of August. On weekdays on the Roma-Lido going to Ostia, bikes (but there is a limit on the number) are admitted from the start of service until 12:30 p.m. and then, again, after 8p.m. Going back to Rome, the hours are before 7 a.m., between 10:30 and 1 p.m. and from 4:00 p.m. until the end of service. On weekdays, the A, B and B1 metro lines will be bike accessible on weekdays, before 7 a.m., between 10 and 12a.m and after 8pm until the end of service. Parking stations for bikes inside the stations are not guarded.

Of course, if trains or buses are particularly crowded, personnel can tell you it’s a no go. As for cost. Well if you have a monthly or yearly bus pass, it is free. Otherwise you  need two tickets. The number of bikes per train is limited (see so groups of five or more on their way to Ostia should telephone the metro Roma-Lido headquarters at 06.4695.2561 the day before to make arrangements.

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