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1st or 2nd class train ticket through italy

1st or 2nd class train ticket through italy

Old Oct 12th, 2008, 02:34 PM
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1st or 2nd class train ticket through italy

I was looking at the RailEurope website to get an idea of fares for our travel between cities in Italy, and it looks like the fare difference is about $30 between 1st and 2nd class tickets. The only difference I see is that 1st class apparently offers reclining seats. Has anyone traveled on both to say if it is worth paying extra for 1st class tickets?

I know $30 doesn't seem like much, but it adds up when you consider it is for two people and for multiple legs of our trip.

Thanks!
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Old Oct 12th, 2008, 02:42 PM
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I took the train(high speed) from Rome to Florence and from Florence to Venice. Personally, I wouldn't bother with paying extra for 1st class. 2nd class was clean and comfortable. Save your money for gelato!
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Old Oct 12th, 2008, 03:03 PM
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The answer is may be.

This is one of those "worth" question - the answer depends on your personality as well as external circumstances for which you don't have much control.

Because of this, if you are the type where saving expense is the dominant consideration, you will be better off with the 2nd class.

If the train is not occupied, there is not much difference between the two. To get some guesses, you need to know the route and the day and the time of day you are planning to travel.

If the train is crowded, 1st class "generally" provides you with more space to store your luggage near you. However, there are exceptions. For example, if that particular train is carrying tour groups traveling in 1st class trains with huge luggage, then you would be worse off in the 1st class from the luggage consideration. However, these type of circumstances cannot be predicted.

To get a better estimate of actual price differences that you will see in Italy, use www.trenitalia.com instead.


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Old Oct 12th, 2008, 03:17 PM
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I wouldn't look at RailEurope either since they mark the tickets up and charge a mailing fee. Look at the Italian train website, not RailEurope.

It's hard to say whether 1st or 2nd cl makes a difference when we don't know what type of train you are talking about or which routes. ICPlus and IC trains are not as nice as the AV or ES trains so perhaps you would want to upgrade on those. For some routes only the slower trains are available (no fast trains on the route) and they don't even have 1st or 2nd.

Between Rome and Florence or Rome and Naples, the travel time is only 90 minutes so I don't see the point of 1st cl. I think I paid 36E a few weeks ago for Naples/Rome 2nd cl on the AV train. I could have saved 20% if I booked all my tickets when I got to Italy and selected the discount Amica fare.

My 2nd cl AV seat reclined, but not much and I wouldn't think 1st cl recline would be any different. The real difference between 1st and 2nd on AV or ES is the number of seats grouped together. 2nd cl has 2 seats facing 2 seats on each side of the aisle with a shared table for each set of 4 seats. 1st cl has 2 facing 2 on one side and 1 facing 1 on the other side (also with shared tables). So your seat space is a little wider on 1st cl.

On ICPlus and IC trains it's an entirely different setup.
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Old Oct 12th, 2008, 03:39 PM
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Agree with the above poster that it depends on the length of your journey(ies). I think 2nd class is fine, especially if it's $30 per leg per person. That will add up if you have 3 or 4 legs in your trip.

If you book second class and have a situation where you'd rather be in first class then move to unreserved first class seats and pay the balance when the conductor takes your ticket. I've done that with no problem.
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Old Oct 12th, 2008, 04:11 PM
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First Class is generally less crowded - frequently has open seats. So there is also more room for you luggage - which you will need it you're taking more than a 21" carry-on with you. (In 2nd class you may need to search for a place for larger bags - at the end of the car or stuffed between seats facing opposite directions.

If we;re traveling with luggage - or for longer than 2 hours or so we always do First Class to be more comfortable and less squashed in by other passengers.
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Old Oct 12th, 2008, 05:17 PM
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This past summer there was a lot of difference in temperature in the two classes. It was VERY hot in 2nd class. This was the case on two different trains. I'm speaking of Italy only here--Florence to CT and CT to Milan.
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Old Oct 12th, 2008, 05:50 PM
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Connie - Florence/CT doesn't have any of the nicer trains on those lines, only the older slower trains (mostly the oldest trains - r's). I haven't noticed any difference in AC on any AV or ES trains.
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Old Oct 12th, 2008, 07:56 PM
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We travelled by train in Italy in August 2007, and we only went 2nd class. Most of our trips were on the high-speed trains, and because there were 4 of us (2 adults, 2 children) we saved a lot of money. We took an older train from La Spezia to Rome, and we had our own compartment in 2nd class. We never had any problem with luggage, which included two rather large bags on wheels. Overall, we saved hundreds of dollars by travelling second class and would do it again.
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Old Oct 14th, 2008, 08:45 PM
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Hi, unless it is a very long trip, Second Class in good trains is absolutly perfect.

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Old Oct 15th, 2008, 03:07 AM
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Hi de,

First: Use the Italian national train system for schedules and tickets.

www.trenitalia.com/en/index.html

Second: 2cl on the AV, ES* and IC+ is fine.

C: For trips over 4 hr on other trains, if you are under 35, go 2cl. If you are over 45, go 1cl.

Enjoy your visit.

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Old Oct 15th, 2008, 05:31 AM
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"For trips over 4 hr on other trains, if you are under 35, go 2cl. If you are over 45, go 1cl."

I'm 58, always travel second class, and always see other passengers older than me.
GeoffHamer is offline  
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