Need help w/Final Train Plans

Old Aug 19th, 2006, 07:09 PM
  #1  
nunz
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Need help w/Final Train Plans

We are leaving on September 7th. I've tried to do my homework and used your previous input but I need help....with the following train questions.

(1) We (2 of us) are leaving Rome on Sept 11th (yes 9/11) and going to Vernazza. I'm looking at Trenitalia 516 departing Rome at 9:46 and arriving at 14:30. It won't let me purchase the tickets though. Is there something else I should be doing?

(2) We are leaving Monterosso on Sept 18th for Paris. I'm looking at train #648 leaving at 5:19 a.m. arriving in Paris at 16:00 on train # 9242. I was trying to purchase these and didn't know what to pick when it gave me options for ticketing like 2 Go, 2 card price, 2 partial pass, 2 smart pass. Also, is it best to have the tickets sent to my home?

Any and all suggestions are appreciated. If you think I should be taking a different route or going about this in a different way, please let me know.

As always, I'm looking forward to your expert advice!!!

Thank you....Thank you.....Thank you
 
Old Aug 20th, 2006, 05:21 AM
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topping
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Old Aug 20th, 2006, 05:37 AM
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ira
 
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Hi N,

(1) It let me purchase tickets, at least to the point of entering CC info.

Are you registered with Trenitalia?

(2) Take the global pass price.
You want to pick up your tickets at the station. You will get a confirmation number. Bring that with you. Also bring the same credit card that you used to purchase the tickets, just in case.

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Old Aug 20th, 2006, 06:16 AM
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nunz
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Hello Ira. Good to hear from you again. Well, another little stumbling block. I never did registered with Trenitalia. Some tickets it would show "buy" and some it woudn't. I will register and then try this again. Have you ever had the tickets sent to you. I will be using my Mom's credit to purchase these so I won't have the card with me. Otherwise, did everything look right to you in terms of my tickets? If we need to make any changes was we arrive, is that a hassle or pretty straight forward. Many thanks!
 
Old Aug 20th, 2006, 08:15 AM
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ira
 
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Hi Nun,

After you have registered it will be easier to buy tickets.

You can change tickets at a ticket counter at any train station before your train leaves.

However, if you think that you might want to take a different train from the one on which you are ticketed, buy your tickets in Italy.

Please NOTE:

There are 45 and 25E "Smart Fares" from Milan to Paris.

The 05:19 arrives Milan at 08:28 (19E pp)

You can catch the 09:13 to Paris at the low fare. Muc, much cheaper than the standard fare.

You want to pick up your tickets in Italy. You will get a confirmation number.

You can get your tickets at any train station, including the one at FCO if you are arriving there.

Enjoy your visit.

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Old Aug 20th, 2006, 12:11 PM
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nunz
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Ira you are a "rock star"! Thanks so much for your help. I will register tonight and then check out the fares and purchasing options you mention below. Thanks for the heads up about the standard fare and smart fares. It sounds like you recommend we pick up our tickets there rather than have them sent here before we leave?

On a different note, what does "topping" mean when other Fodorites add that, i.e., Sandi travel nut?

Thanks again Ira. Hopefully, I won't come back with more questions. Getting very excited though. I still have two nights (2 out of 5) in Paris where I have no hotel!!!! I've tried all the recommendations on this site but everything is booked. It looks like the Hotel Relais Du Louvre has rooms but they are 180E which is more than I wanted to spend. The other 3 nights we are at Relais de Paris Cambronne on Boulevard De Grenelle which is all I could find. No luck at Bonaparte!!!!

Ciao and Merci!!
 
Old Aug 21st, 2006, 05:57 AM
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ira
 
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Hi nunz,

Whenever someone posts to a thread, it goes to the top of the list. Thus, ttt or topping is used to bring a post to the top.

>It sounds like you recommend we pick up our tickets there rather than have them sent here before we leave? <

Yup.

Try these hotels in Paris,

www.france-hotel-guide.com/h75005monge.htm

http://www.hoteldulys.com/

www.123france.com/123/en/hotel.php?id_hot=839

www.france-hotel-guide.com/h75005henri.htm

http://www.hotel-langlois.com/index.html

http://www.paris-hotel-louvre-forum.com/index.html

http://www.hoteldesgrandshommes.com/

Enjoy your visit.
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Old Aug 21st, 2006, 07:07 PM
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nunz
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Me again. Well Ira, I'm beginning to think I'm not meant to purchase these tickets ahead of time. I registered, at least I though I did. I got an e-mail with my user name and password but when I try to log in I get this message in Italian even though I selected Eng.

Gentile cliente la sua password deve essere aggiornata. Per modificarla cliccare qu

Se non sei ancora registrato, puoi farlo adesso.
Hai dimenticato la password?

Maybe I should just purchase them when I get to Italy. Do you think that will be a problem (getting what I want, etc.). Sorry to keep bothering you. BTW, thanks for the other hotel suggestions. I had already tried them all based on my research of this site...all booked. I will try the other general booking sites you mentioned though. Thanks again. Deep sigh....
 
Old Aug 22nd, 2006, 04:32 AM
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I was wondering the same thing as nunz...will I have a problem getting on the train I want if I wait to purchase my tickets in Italy? I will be going from Rome to Naples, then Naples to Rome.
Also, Ira, will I get a better price if I purchase these in Italy rather than ahead of time on the website? It seems like a lot of people have the same problems purchasing online, so I think I'd rather just get them when I arrive.
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Old Aug 22nd, 2006, 05:23 AM
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I'm definitely not the expert that Ira is - but most of what I read on here, people think it is fine to buy when you get there - in fact you can go ahead and get all your tickets when you first arrive in Italy. Unless you are going during a very busy time or on a night train. There are so many trains between Rome and Naples, I wouldn't think you'd have a problem at all.

That said - I really wanted to get my tickets in advance. We are taking a train from Salerno to Venice and since this is a long journey and an infrequent route, I wanted to book ahead. Also, we needed tickets from Rome to Naples and I wanted to take advantage of the DuoperUno (2 for 1) sale on the new AV train. This really isn't too much of a cost savings, because thid train is a little more expensive than some of the other options- but we got 2- 1st class tickets for 39E. The difference between 1st and 2nd class was only 6E, so I went for it!

And finally last night - I was able to complete the purchase of both sets of tickets. I have been working at this for a long time. Had to register several times under both mine and my fiance's names. One of my registrations was cancelled for security reasons. Probably I tried to log in too many times or whatever. I created a couple of new email addresses so that I could register under those. It was a total pain, but I did get the tickets finally. So I'd say it is totally up to you if it is worth it. Also, my MBNA credit card wouldn't go through, but I was able to use AMEX and my Wachovia check card.

I was going to try and call trenitalia, but from their website it looks like there is a charge (not long distance) to talk to someone in their call center? So, I didn't end up going that route.

Anyway, good luck to you!
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Old Aug 22nd, 2006, 05:35 AM
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ira
 
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Hi all,

I found that I had to increase the font size on the password that Trenitalia sent me in order to get it to work.

It also helps to buy tickets between 08:00 and 16:00 Italian time.

It also helps to keep trying.

Nunz,

They want you to update your password. I think that they are doing this for everyone, irrespective of how old the password is.

Amy

You can get discounted tickets (29E on ES*, 2-4-1 on the AV) for some routes by buying online.

Otherwise, you are quite likely to get the tickets you want in Italy, unless you are traveling on weekends in Season and on Holidays.

There is a train station at FCO where you can buy all of the tickets you need - usually, if it's not crowded and the agent is in a good mood.

Enjoy your visits, and don't worry too much about train tickets.

ira is offline  
Old Aug 22nd, 2006, 06:39 AM
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nunz
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Hi all! Well, at least I'm not alone. I was beginning to wonder. I may give purchasing on-line a go once more and if that doesn't fly I will just purchase once I arrive. You've all been a great help and sanity check for me. Can't wait to go and report back on my travels. Enjoy!
 
Old Aug 22nd, 2006, 07:30 AM
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Another option, besides on-line purchasing and waiting till you get there, is to call the helpful experts at budgeteuropetravel.com. They are very knowledgeable and patient. You can purchase tickets through them, with just a small S&H fee to have paper tickets mailed to you. Compare their prices-- I think they are pretty much what you'd see on trenitalia plus the small fee. Good luck! You will love Italy.
 
Old Aug 22nd, 2006, 09:13 AM
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I apologize for butting in, if my information is wrong. The 9:46 a.m. train on 9/11/06 from Rome will not take you directly to Vernazza. It will take you only as far as La Spezia where you change trains. The Trenitalia web site indicates Rome - Spezia, not Vernazza.

I have taken this train route, and had to change trains in La Spezia. The second train I boarded was a slow regional train, which stopped at all the small Cinque Terre towns as well as Santa Margherita Ligure, where I got off the train. This was not by choice, but rather the only way to get up into the Cinque Terre area by train.

Total travel time from Rome to SML with two trains was 5 - 51/2 hours.
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Old Aug 22nd, 2006, 02:04 PM
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nunz
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Maureen and Kane!!

Thanks and no apologies, appreciate the input. I haven't had a chance to try getting a new password or logging in to Trenitalia yet but will definitely check out budget europetravel site. I'm assuming I can purchase the same type of tickets I would purchase on the Trenitalia site but I can get some guidance and help here (for a small fee), which is OK. I would just like have everything done prior to leaving so I don't have to spend any precious time there messing with this stuff. Wish me luck. Thanks again.
 
Old Aug 22nd, 2006, 03:09 PM
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Nunz, I felt the same way the first time we traveled Vienna-Prague-Munich by train. I wanted paper tickets in hand before we left home. And the process was intimidating!
BudgetEuropeTravel.com figured all the special fares, etc., got the best rate, mailed tickets to us. Definitely worth the small fee, to know I was getting good advice and a reasonable itinerary. They can give you alternate suggestions, if you need them.
Have fun on your trip.
 
Old Aug 22nd, 2006, 03:46 PM
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I hate to be a wet blanket, but I did not have the same experience with Budget Europe as MaureenB.

The staff at BE is extremely helpful and patient (nice people), but this was my vacation and I was paying for it. I gave them every opportunity to book my tickets, but in March-April 2006 I was told the train booking system changed at the beginning of 2006, and they couldn't access Trenitalia on their system. Weeks would pass between phone calls and this went on for over a month.

Time was ticking away, and I needed 10 tickets on every segment of the trip, so I booked them myself. I did speak with them after I purchased my tickets and told them I would contact them on a future trip.

Maybe I just had bad luck with them.
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