Travelling by train through Italy is a very pleasant experience and acquiring your tickets is a very simple task. If you make your reservations with time the value of tickets is usually not very expensive.
From our experience we can tell you that the train service works very well. The trains meet their schedules, are very well cared for and it is not difficult to find the information you need to travel.
In this article we are going to tell you about the different types of trains that exist in the country. To give you an idea, there are medium speed trains (short runs), or high speed trains (long runs).
Also, we are going to share some recommendations and care for you to enjoy the trip looking at the scenery from your window without having to worry too much.
What kind of trains are there in Italy?
As we mentioned before, there are different types of trains: regional and interregional /interurban medium speed trains and interregional and international high-speed trains. There are two companies that provide their services throughout the country, one owned by the state Trenitalia and the other by private Italotreno.
You’ll see the name Trenitalia everywhere! It is the national railway company of Italy. It has regional and interregional trains of medium and long distance, night and day. In addition, it collaborates with other European railways connecting the country with other destinations such as France, Switzerland, Austria and Germany.
In its page you will be able to find some special promotions and discounts on specific dates especially if you get your ticket in advance. You can find tickets with different prices that correspond to the same train. What changes in these fares are the benefits and the possibility of making changes in your reservation.
If you are a traveler planning your trip in advance you will be able to find SuperEconomy and Economy fares. You will not be able to make changes or cancellations but the value will be the cheapest.
On the other hand, if what you need is more flexibility, you should choose the Base Fare. With this choice you will be able to make changes of timetable, date, train, destination and even request a refund (with a small commission).
An important fact for passengers with low battery in their mobile devices is that long and medium distance trains have an outlet to plug them and some also have wifi on board.
It is a company with modern high-speed trains operated by private capitals. They are considered to be the most modern trains in Europe.
Depending on the type of ticket you choose, it can include on-board catering and use of the vending machine in the relaxation area of the carriages. In addition, it provides wifi service and a power outlet so that you can plug in mobile devices (regardless of the fare you choose).
Like Trenitalia trains, we can find different fares on the same train. The categories are first class (Premium and Club) or second class (Smart Class). It is clear that choosing second class on a train of this type does not mean that you will travel badly.
How to book train tickets
You can check in advance the routes, timetables and fares from the web pages of trenitalia and italotreno. In both you will find useful information, reliable and easy to understand.
The only thing to keep in mind is that the pages are only in two languages: English and Italian, for Spanish speakers it is necessary to use the translator. The important thing is to put the name of the cities in Italian to be able to carry out the searches.
Another way to buy your tickets is in person, through the windows or vending machines (each company has its own ticket office with the name of the company).
In both cases you can pay by credit or debit card and/or cash and the price is the same. The positive thing about the machines is that you can modify the language to make the purchase without any inconvenience.
If you dare to buy your tickets by talking to humans, we will tell you the basics you need to know in order to communicate.
Validate your ticket
It is essential to validate (stamp) train tickets in order to be able to travel both in Rome and in other parts of Italy.
After taking out the ticket and before going up to the training it is necessary that you look for some small machines usually green with the logo of Trenitalia or yellow and that you place your ticket for its validation.
Tickets vary in size depending on where you buy them. The ones you buy by the window are bigger and the ones of the automatic machine are much smaller. Don’t worry, they work both!
Validation machines simply mark the ticket. Keep in mind that regardless of the size of your ticket, they must be placed against the left side in order to be stamped.
It is important to validate your ticket because in case the controller goes up to pick up the tickets and does not contain the validated mark it is considered as if you did not have a ticket and it is possible that you will have to pay a fine.
Some phrases of caution are going to be listened to until the tiredness as much in the platforms of trains as of subways.
Allontanarsi dalla linea Gialla: it means to get away from the yellow line! On all platforms there is a yellow line that you must avoid stepping on or going too far from. Keep in mind that sometimes high speed formations do not brake in all seasons.
Attenzione ai borseggiatori: you will read it on several posters, some people may suggest it to you and above all you will hear it on the audio of the ticket-buying machines. Beware of pickpockets!
Alien lovers are everywhere in the world. Being cautious with personal and important objects can never be too much. Our suggestion is that if you need information always try to approach people from the company.
- Trenitalia’s high-speed trains (FrecciaRossa, FrecciArgento and FrecciaBianca) have lockers that differ from normal trains. You can avoid numerous rows!
- Medium-speed trains have a luggage compartment, which allows you to travel more comfortably. High-speed trains, on the other hand, have limited space, they are designed for someone travelling with a handbag. In case you have a lot of suitcases it is not so worrying, remember that they do not have intermediate stops so you do not need to have your luggage between your eyes.
- To arrive on time to the stations is never too much. Mainly in the big stations. Rome’s main station does not appear to be how big it is. From my own experience in Termini there are trains that depart from the other end and buying a ticket 5 minutes before is not a good idea. Avoid running among lost tourists!
- Through loudspeakers and on the information screens, just like on your tickets, you will see that they indicate the “Partenze” departures and “Arrivi” arrivals of the trains with a “binary” number. That’s the name of where the trains leave from. Attention to the announcements!
- Always remember to Stamp or Validate your tickets. This is essential before boarding the train for regional, high-speed regional or interregional formations. Fines hurt!
- Never lose sight of your luggage, near the vending machines there are always people who offer to help you. Be careful and avoid those who do not have good intentions. Be cautious without being unpleasant!
- In the terminals there is a luggage depot, if your idea is to get off at some station to get to know a city and not stay there, you can do it this way.