Are train schedules in Italy dependable?

Old Apr 12th, 2006, 08:13 AM
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Are train schedules in Italy dependable?

In a few weeks we'll be in Italy! We (4 adults) plan to take the train from Rome to Chiusi to pick up our rental car. We would like to have lunch at La Solita Zuppa in Chiusi. The ideal train schedule has us arriving in Chiusi at 12:09. The rental car agency closes at 1:00. If the train is on time, this works out very well. I don't have enough experience with train travel in Italy to know if there schedules are dependable - should I go with this or take an earlier train that arrives an hour earlier. Thanks, in advance, for opinions...
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Old Apr 12th, 2006, 08:15 AM
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They are generally reliable but I'd still get an earlier train as if things do go wrong your are stuck
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Old Apr 12th, 2006, 08:42 AM
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The train would rarely be very late but it always happens the time you need to be on time - take an earlier train and relax.
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Old Apr 12th, 2006, 09:33 AM
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I love Italy but on more than one trip the trains have run late. I'd opt for the earlier train to be certain of getting there in time.
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Old Apr 12th, 2006, 09:57 AM
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Thanks so much for "nudging" me in the other direction!
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Old Apr 12th, 2006, 10:19 AM
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They are infinitely better than they used to be, but depending on trains is still a vague science. Speaking of Chiusi, we arrived at the station there ready for a full day's trip moving to Menton -- via Milan. There was a mob at the Chiusi train station. Seems a bunch of workers at a couple of the stations on the line had decided to do a work stoppage that day -- totally unannounced -- so all trains had stopped. After struggling to find a rental car without success, we settled in for the wait. After a few hours, eveyone decided to go back to work and the trains began again. We only got to Menton about 6 hours later than expected.

Another time we stood in the Venice Mestre station waiting and waiting for our Eurostar. It was an hour and a half late. Seems a window blew out on the incoming trip and they were fixing it.
 
Old Apr 12th, 2006, 10:59 AM
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They are usualy fairly reliable - but I wouldn;t chance somethig that close. (We have been delayed a couple of times - once more than 2 hours - for no discernible reason.)
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Old Apr 12th, 2006, 11:08 AM
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Neopolitan, that's interesting to note about the unannounced work stoppage, because I had previously read not to worry, as all Italian strikes would be announced months in advance. But clearly that doesn't apply to wildcat strikes.
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Old Apr 12th, 2006, 11:28 AM
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I think the "science" is much more "exact" in Germany and Switzerland and even The Netherlands now that Mussolini has left the scene.
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Old Apr 12th, 2006, 11:44 AM
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It does not seem to be an exact science the way it is in Germany and Switzerland where you can almost set your watch by the train arrivals/departures. I think especially on secondary lines...Vernazza to Genoa the train was quite late...we thought perhaps it wasn't coming but 25 minutes later...there is was. Luckily our connection from Genoa via Milan to Paris had several hours in between so it did not affect us.
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