A woman spent $1,370 to escape Milan's lockdown by taxi, only to be placed on lockdown in Rome the day after her 350-mile, 6-hour trip

italy milan lockdown.JPG

Flavio Lo Scalzo/Reuters

A military officer in the Piazza del Duomo in Milan on March 10, 2020.

  • A woman in Milan hailed a $1,370 taxi to escape the coronavirus lockdown, only to be placed under lockdown in Rome the day after her arrival.
  • La Repubblica reported that "Michela" left Milan at 10:30 p.m. on Saturday and arrived in Rome, 350 miles and six hours later, at 4:30 a.m. on Sunday.
  • Her driver, "Melchiorre," told the paper they had to stop twice en route so Michela could withdraw €1,200 in cash.
  • On Monday, PM Giuseppe Conte extended the lockdown - which had covered Lombardy, and 14 other provinces -to the whole country.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

A woman from Milan took a $1,370 taxi cab to Rome to escape coronavirus lockdown, only for the city to be placed under lockdown a day later.

Lombardy, the capital of which is Milan, was placed on lockdown on Sunday morning along with 14 nearby provinces.Advertisement

One of those, according to La Repubblica, was 30-year-old Michela, who jumped in a city taxi at 10.30 p.m. local time on Saturday, asking to be taken to Rome.

"I accepted it without thinking, it is my job," her driver, a 20-year taxi veteran called Melchiorre, told the newspaper.

"Obviously, before leaving, I asked the girl if she knew what expenses she would be faced with."

Melchiorre made it to Michela's family home in the neighborhood of Balduina, Rome, six hours later, at 4:30 a.m. local time.Advertisement

But Michela did not have much time to enjoy her freedom in Rome, after the lockdown on Milan and its 14 surrounding provinces was extended to the whole of Italy on Monday.

The lockdown means 60 million people are confined to stay in their homes from Tuesday until April 3.

Taxi driver Claudio Falciola poses for a photo near his taxi in Milan, Italy, Friday, Feb. 23, 2018. Italian economic pickup belies weaknesses in real economy, few of which are being addressed directly as politicians stump for March 4 national elections. Claudio Falciola joined millions of Italians who faced economic uncertainty when he lost his job in 2012 as a technician due to a long recession in the eurozone's third-largest economy. (AP Photo/Antonio Calanni)

AP Photo/Antonio Calanni

A taxi driver in Milan, Italy, Friday, Feb. 23, 2018.


A number of rules have been enforced. Travel is allowed only with police permission, and most shops and restaurants have limited opening hours. Major gatherings such as football matches and university classes are on hold.

"The right decision today is to stay at home," prime minister Giuseppe Conte said in an address on Monday. "Our future and the future of Italy is in our hands. These hands have to be more responsible today than ever before."

All roads lead to Rome

Melchiorre had already been driving for five hours on Saturday, having started his shift at 5 p.m., but took Michela's job regardless, after she agreed to the costs.Advertisement

"How beautiful Rome is, I found myself saying aloud," Melchiorre told La Repubblica. "The buildings were reflected on the river, and around there was an air of normality: what is missing in Milan."

"I am used to traveling at night, I have music that has always kept me company. I was not sleepy. Instead, at some point she fell asleep," he said.Advertisement