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Milan to Bologna: Train Time

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Jan 30th, 2013, 02:21 PM
  #1
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Milan to Bologna: Train Time

I am traveling to Italy in June. I arrive in Milan Linate at 15:00. The Linate website states I can take a bus from the airport to the Central train station - buses leave at 30 minute intervals.

The Trenitalia website has trains to Bologna leaving at 10 minutes after each hour.

Assuming the plane arrives on time (and our luggage is carry-on only), what would be a realistic train departure time? Could we make the 16:10 train? Or is 17:10 more realistic?

Or is it foolish to book the train in advance because flight arrivals are too unpredictable?
leia0602 is offline  
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Jan 30th, 2013, 04:34 PM
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The only reason to book in advance would be if you were trying to snag a discount ticket or traveling on a major holiday. I don't know how much of a trek it will be from where the bus would drop you to your track. The fast trains are usually in the stations about 10-15 minutes.

There are several trains between 17:00 and 18:00, but you are getting into commuter time.

It's too early to book June.
kybourbon is online now  
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Jan 31st, 2013, 01:20 AM
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Question:

From a major business centre, on a train serving the country's other major business centres, how realistic is it to assume it's possible to get on a train without booking between 1530 and 1900?

On my standard UK route (probably less heavily travelled than the Milan-Florence-Rome corridor, but with comparable frequency and capacity), between those hours if you're not there then moment the train gets into the station and haven't prebooked a seat, you're going to be standing - which I don't think is allowed these days on Italian fast trains.

With growing use of revenue optimisation systems on continental high speed trains, and an apparent increase in railways' share of Italian intercity passenger travel, is "just turn up" feasible at peak times any more - especially on business routes?

FWIW, I've not been on a continental high speed train with empty seats - even in First - for at least five years.
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Jan 31st, 2013, 07:01 AM
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>>>From a major business centre, on a train serving the country's other major business centres, how realistic is it to assume it's possible to get on a train without booking between 1530 and 1900?<<<

It's usually not a problem even between places like Rome/Florence. There are also the slower R trains that don't sell out. There are 5 Trenitalia trains from Milan to Bologna from 1700-1800 and 5 between 1800-1900.

There's also the option of the new train company Italo. They depart from P. Garibaldi and Rogoredo (closer to Linate than Centrale or P.G.), but don't offer as many departures.

http://www.italotreno.it/EN/timetabl...rview_old.aspx

If you want to book in advance, you take a risk with the advance purchase tickets if your flight is late. The full base fare ticket can be changed (super economy can't), but it has to be changed before the train departs.

You can read about the various ticket on Trenitalia rules here:
http://www.fsitaliane.it/cms/v/index...003f16f90aRCRD
kybourbon is online now  
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Feb 2nd, 2013, 02:21 PM
  #5
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kybourbon, thanks for the info. I wasn’t aware of the Italo option. We are spending 4-5 nights each in Bologna, Florence and Rome and planned on taking the train from city to city, so this gives us additional options for these places as well. Looks like Italo prices are also lower than Trenitalia.

It sounds like I don’t have to be overly concerned about getting a train ticket upon arrival. I think I’ll decide which train station to depart from based on the time it is after arriving and clearing customs.

Italo:
Porta Garibaldi to Bologna 28 after the hour
Rogoredo to Bologna 49 after the hour

Trenitalia
Centrale to Bologna 10 after the hour
Porta Garibaldi to Bologna 13 after the hour (but no train at 16:13)
Rogoredo to Bologna 34 after the hour (but no train at 16:34)

Having a shuttle bus to Centrale that leaves from Linate’s arrival area sounds handy, but taking a taxi to one of the other stations would be okay too.
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Feb 2nd, 2013, 03:18 PM
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You should go to Centrale. If trains at the other stations get canceled or late, you'll end up at Centrale anyway.

The Italian working day is such that your plane would need to be awfully late for you to start running into it -- and besides, Italy is not a commuting culture. if you are traveling on a Friday evening, trains will be more noticeably full, but not jammed.

June 6 is a holiday in Italy, but I don't think it will have much impact on trains if you happen to be traveling that day.
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Feb 2nd, 2013, 03:22 PM
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>>"FWIW, I've not been on a continental high speed train with empty seats - even in First - for at least five years.""

It's worthless, since you asked. I've been on the train between Milan and Bologna at least a dozen times in the past year, between the hours of 3pm and 8pm. It has never been full, and I travel first class.

In short, flanneruk has no idea what he is talking about when he talks about Italian trains, which he insists on seeing through the prism of the UK and its failing train system. As Italy's train system has dramatically improved in the last 5 years, the UK's has steadily worsened.
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Feb 2nd, 2013, 06:24 PM
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P Garibaldi would be a bit further (not much) away than Centrale.

>>>Italo:
Porta Garibaldi to Bologna 28 after the hour
Rogoredo to Bologna 49 after the hour<<<

Same train. Note the train numbers when you are looking at various schedules.
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Feb 2nd, 2013, 06:43 PM
  #9
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>>>>Same train. Note the train numbers when you are looking at various schedules.

thanks kybourbon
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