Italian Train System

Old Apr 17th, 2000, 05:22 AM
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Italian Train System

How long should the train trip from Rome to Florence? I have read that it might not be a bad idea to get your train ticket in advance - is that true? On a Saturday morning (in June) will the line be long for the Rome to Florence line? I have also heard that pickpockets are more of a problem in the train stations - true? Also, is the train the best way to get from the Rome Airport to downtown Rome, or would a taxi be better? Thanks, everyone.
Old Apr 17th, 2000, 06:25 AM
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Length of trip will depend on how many stops the train makes. Two hours or so.
Best to pay the extra for second class on the Eurostar, an Intercity train (first class costs much more, second class is already expensive enough with the Intercity additional tarrif, there is very little difference in amenities between first and second class, and the people in second class arrive at the same time as the people in first class) and go with no whistle stops.
Eurostar trains require reservations (prenotazione). I live near a small city in Tuscany and I make Eurostar reservations at the station there (even though Eurostar trains don't stop there you can make reservations via the computer link)--lines are often very long at the major city train stations. Of course if you can manage it, best of all is just to accept these waits as a part of travel and not let it get to you, just calm down, be glad you're not lost, and use the time for some thinking.
Yes pickpockets target train stations (think supply and demand).
Take the train in to Rome, the taxi costs more and with traffic might take the same amount of time or even more.
Happy travels--
Old Apr 19th, 2000, 09:40 AM
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Trains are frequent to Florence and take about 2 hours. Pickpockets are a problem on all busses and metros. Always wear a money belt or something UNDERNEATH your clothing. Take the train from airport to Rome. Sixteen thousand lire (about $8.00 US) to termini station.
Old Apr 19th, 2000, 01:46 PM
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Hi David--the train from the Rome airport to the train station in Rome (from which you can take a cab to your hotel or the Metro (we took the Metro and it was incredibly easy)is called the Leonardo Express--it was very well-marked and as noted by Ishoo costs 16 thousand lire. It was very easy. There are automatic machines that sell you a ticket or just buy one at the ticket counter.

We took the train from Rome to Venice in mid-March and the Rome to Florence portion was VERY crowded. I would suggest a reservation in first-class on the Eurostar--it was very nice, but do make a reservation because folks without reservations did not get seats (and were very unhappy). We bought our tickets from before we left.

It is a lovely ride through the Tuscan countryside.

I heard all kinds of tales about street crime in Rome and saw no evidence of it; it's a big city--stay heads up. At night my husband and I felt safer than we do in our hometown of Washington, D.C.


Old Apr 26th, 2000, 10:16 PM
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Termini Train station: Catch the Termini line, an air-conditioned express train (every hr.) from Rome’s Leonardo da Vinci (Fiumicino) airport for 30-min. ride (20,000L pp) to the Termini train
station. Hrs.: 7:30am-9pm. Simply follow the signs to your left for Stazione FS/Railway Station also labeled “Treno.” Right after you walk through customs, when you leave the arrivals building,
you’ll see the train station about 40 feet in front of you across the street and up the ramp. If you plan to take the train back to the airport, purchase all your tickets at the same time. It will save you a lot of time when you get ready to leave Rome. Also, pick up a train schedule when you purchase your train ticket. Trains run from Termini to the airport every half-hour from track #22. Hrs.: 6:50am-9:15pm. (Check the large boards with the current train schedules posted high on walls of either side of tracks for current train info.) Taxi: Airport to center (45 min.) is approximately 90,000L including luggage.
Airport Shuttle: [email protected]
Tel: 06-42014507. Fax: 06-42014511.

Train travel in Italy: My husband and I do all our traveling by train or bus. To make our train travel more efficient throughout the country, we use the Thomas Cook European Timetable, which is sold in most travel bookstores or you can order it directly from Forsyth Travel Library, tel: (800) FORSYTH in the U.S. or Canada. This is the best timetable available and is published on the first day of each month. It is worth its weight in gold because it can save you hours of standing on information lines at various train stations. Otherwise, you can visit Rail Europe’s Web site at or call them at (888) 382-7245 or fax them at (800) 432-1329 or try FS (the Italian State Railroad) at Web site I use these numbers to get an idea of the cost, distance and time it takes to travel to each city’s FS train station. Rail Europe also has an information-by-fax-on-demand system. The prices and information you get from contacting Rail Europe will help you to decide what type of rail pass you will need, if any. There are so many variations of passes that are sold by Rail Europe. The following is a brief summary of the different passes available for Italy. 1.) Eurailpass—a multicountry pass sold either as a consecutive days usage pass or flexipass, which is a certain amount of days in a time frame (1st class only). 2.) Eurail saverpass is the same as the Eurailpass but is cheaper if two or more people are traveling together on the same schedule (1st class only). 3.) Europass—a specified number of days for specific number of countries (1st class only). 4.) Europass saverpass—same as Europass but is cheaper if two people are traveling together on the same schedule (1st class only). 5.) Europass drive—combination rail/drive pass (1st or 2nd class). 6.) Italy rail card—a specified number of consecutive days in a month (1st or 2nd class). 7.) Italy flexi rail card—a specified number of days in a month (1st or 2nd class). 8.) Italy rail ’n drive pass—combination pass for train and car (1st or 2nd class). Most of the passes mentioned above are available for people under 26 at discounted prices and would include the use of 2nd class travel. If you decide on a rail pass, be sure to buy it from Rail Europe before leaving home; those available elsewhere cost more. Please note that whether you have a rail pass or not, reservations are mandatory on the Eurostar Italia (ES), EuroCity (EC), InterCity (IC), the Pendolino and EuroNight (EN) night trains. I usually go to the train station a day or two ahead to make my reservations for the next leg of my trip. This cuts down on the stress of finding out that the departure times or seats you want are sold out, which has happened to me more than once when I waited to the last minute to make my reservation. Train information line in Italy (English language) Tel: 1478-88088. Hrs.: Daily 7am-9pm. However, once I get to Italy, I buy the FS “InTreno” which is the official train timetable that the train conductors use for information. The FS “InTreno” timetable came in quite handy for the Italian Riviera and Cinque Terre which is not covered by the Thomas Cook Timetable. This book also saved me precious time that would have been wasted waiting in information lines in Florence, Venice and Rome. The FS “InTreno”is available at newsstands inside the train stations for 8,000L.

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