Thanks to high-speed services on the Italian train network, you can reach iconic cities like Rome and Florence, seaside towns in the south or mountain regions in the north in just a few hours. At the same time travelling by train in Italy is a fantastic opportunity to see some stunning scenery all from the comfort of your seat.
Trains in Italy are perfect if you want to reach your destinations as quickly as possible while also saving money. Travelling by train is usually faster and cheaper than by air. For example, a train journey from Rome to Milan lasts an average of 2 hours 30 minutes or from Rome to Florence 1.5 hours or Rome to Venice around 4 hours. The train is also much faster than driving.
Trains in Italy are primarily run by Trenitalia. This state-owned company provides services across Italy, from high-speed journeys to regional ones. Trenitalia will take you from the Alps in the north to the Mediterranean south. Trenitalia trains are generally split into two groups. The Frecce trains: Frecciarossa, Frecciabianc and Frecciargento, and the regional trains.
Frecce, which translates to arrow in English, are the high-speed trains that serve Italy. Covering long-distance routes across the Italy. Using the new Frecciarossa 1000 trains, journey times between cities such as Rome and Milan have fallen to under 3 hours. Frecciarossa trains travel to cities such as Naples, Florence and Bologna on a daily basis. Frecciarossa trains have four comfortable classes for their passengers: Executive, Business, Premium and Standard. All Trenitalia passengers on these trains are provided with free Wi-Fi.
Frecciargento trains travel same long distances but not at the same speed as Frecciarossa. These trains have just first two classes: First and Second. Frecciargento trains take passengers on many of the same routes as a Frecciarossa, while also making stops at Genoa, Verona and Naples, among many others.
Frecciabianca trains meaning white arrow are the slowest of the three and connect regional cities on the high-speed line. Cities such as Bari and Lecce are now easily connected to Naples. Frecciabianca trains do not have the same onboard services however as its sister trains. There's no Wi-Fi onboard, but there's still spacious chairs, air-conditioning and food carriages, making travelling on Frecciabianca trains a pleasant experience.
The other half of the Trenitalia train fleet consists of the Intercity and Regional trains. Covering shorter distances and at a slower speed, these trains are ideal for those who are travelling locally, staying in a certain region. Intercity trains have two classes: First and Second. Passengers in both classes though are supplied with spacious seats, plug sockets and lights above the seat.
There are also Intercity night trains, where you can sleep in bed cabins to save on the cost of a hotel. Regional trains are much slower, serving towns and villages within certain regions. Trenitalia offers one base ticket for these trains.
Italo trains operated by the private company NTV link large and medium-sized cities in Italy with trains travelling at a maximum speed of 350 km/h.
Privatly owned Italo trains provide passengers with four different routes across Italy, with Milan as the main terminal. Italo trains are some of most modern trains in Europe and there are four different classes you can travel on: Smart, Comfort, First and Executive Club.
Trains are operated by the private company NTV and link large and medium-sized cities in Italy with trains travelling at a maximum speed of 350 km/h. With four ticket classes (smart, comfort, prima, club executive) Italo offers travellers: Wi-Fi, power sockets at each place, seats dedicated to people with disabilities, reclining leather seats and even a cinema coach to experience maximum comfort and relaxation while travelling.
Private operator, Italo Treno operates trains on the Milan - Bologna - Florence - Rome - Naples route and Venice - Florence - Rome route. For times, fares and online booking check their official web site. Italo trains have four classes (Smart, Comfort, Prima and Club), all with free Wi-Fi and leather seats.
Trenitalia tickets offer different rates of flexibility. There are four ticket types for Trenitalia: Super Economy, Economy, Base and Regional with the Super Economy tickets being the cheapest but least flexible ones.
Regional train tickets have a fixed price which is determined by the distance between your origin and destination stations and the class you travel. The most flexible tickets are the Base tickets, because you can change them for free as many times as you want.
Trenitalia tickets can be booked up to six months in advance, and much like elsewhere, are typically cheaper the earlier you book. If you’re travelling on a Regional train, Trenitalia offers one ticket: Ordinary. The price of an Ordinary ticket is determined by the class you travel, and the amount of time between your departure and arrival time.
Italo train tickets are divided into three ranges of flexibility: Low Cost, Economy and Flex. Much like with Trenitalia, the tickets range in price depending on levels of flexibility.
For the best deals, Low Cost is naturally the right option, however, you won't be able to travel on an earlier or later train than the one you originally pick. With the Flex ticket, there is greater leeway in when you can travel, but with higher ticket prices as a result.
Train tickets can be purchased from any train station in any Italian city - either from a ticket counter or an automated machine. You can also buy tickets in advance from several web sites. Find below the list of some of them.
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