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Rome on a budget...

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Hi. I need input and major help... A friend of ours works for the airlines and gave my husband and I two vouchers to fly anywhere in the world for practically free. Naturally, we chose Rome as I couldn't think of a more perfect architectural and cultural place. Taking advantage of this is a one time opportunity for us so I have SOO many questions. We are spending 8 days there so, please keep that in mind with the following...

Here goes!!!
1. When to go??? I was thinking the beginning of June. I looked at the temperature and it doesn't sound too bad. I'm an AZ girl so we can endure extreme temps but humidity there is around 90%? I've been around the US so can someone tell me where in the US it compares to? Is it like Baja, Mexico? Texas? San Diego? LA? Florida?

2. Can someone recommed a decent (clean bed, no creepy crawlies) hotel at a reasonable price. $75-$150/night price range? We're not picky on room size and we're definitely not looking for 5 star. Just somewhere that we can trust having our belongings and somewhere within walking distance from the major sites.

3. Most Importantly!!! FOOD!!!! We love to eat!!! Now, we're not cheap-o's but I've eaten at places that were super expensive and not 1/10th as good as my favorite mom n pop restaurants. We're not against spending money on a "upscale place" for 1 or 2 meals but we just want to keep it within reason and we want to eat food like if our mom was Italian and we were going to her house to eat. We are thinking $100 a day for 2 people and 2 meals a day??? Be honest, is that feasable or should I start asking for overtime until then???

Maybe I'm asking for too much??? Well, any help you can give would be SOOO much appreciated! Rome on a budget??? Is it do-able???

Oh any website links would be awesome too!!!

Thanks in advance!!!

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  1. There have been recent discussions here about saving money on eating in Rome, so do look for them. But even with one restaurant meal per day for two, at current exchange rates, your $100 won't go far. A decent dinner with wine, and I mean decent ingredients and traditional cooking not fancy surroundings, will be hard to find for less than $50 per person. But do search the recent threads for some specific ideas.

    2 Replies
    1. re: mbfant

      I appreciate your honesty. Neither my husband or I are big on wine but from some of the posts I've seen, it seems it can be less expensive than the food!!! I guess the whole reason for my search is that I'm not a "daredevil" when it comes to food. We go to a handful of restaurants here in Phx and I normally order the same dish. At the very least, this trip will prove to broaden my horizons with food!!! Thanks again!

      1. re: Kharyzma2122

        Not only is wine often less expensive than the food, it is *much* less expensive than Coke, which can cost more than some dishes on the menu. Bear that in mind if you're on a strict budget.

    2. Chowhound has a very narrow mission--where to find deliciousness. General travel planning questions, like where to stay or what else to do while visiting a town, are off topic for our boards. Please keep your replies focused on helping the poster find great chow, as off topic replies will be removed.


      1. you have to stay at Hotel Grifo-in a central and cute area and the people are so nice and rooms are small but clean.
        i've written before about good cheap food but here are my main suggestions:
        in Trastevere:
        Carlo Menta-via della lungaretta (get lasagna),
        La Fontanone (sp?)-in piazza trilussa,
        Hostaria del Moro-via del cinque,
        Mo'Sto-Via del Moro
        Dar Poeta (only pizza)-via bologna
        pizza to go for lunch at La Renella-via del moro

        ghetto-sora margherita

        1. Bakeries are your friend when budget-dining in Rome. Often bakeries sell sandwiches as well. Figure out where you're staying, then scout out the "best" bakery in the 'hood. An excellent proscuitto & mozzarella sandwich from the forno in the Campo di Fiore will set you back just a few euros.

          Gelato is another very affordable, delicious, when-in-Rome treat: look for "artiginale" somewhere on the gelateria's signage, indicating that the goods on sale were produced in-house, not factory-made.

          The absolutely best Roman money saving tip is to drink the water from public fountains. Bring along a plastic bottle on your daily wanderings and refill it for free with that delicious, free, public spring water. Every day, while gagging down the local brominated swill, I think of that great Roman tap water.