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Need help with logistics of getting city to city in Italy

Need help with logistics of getting city to city in Italy

Old Jul 10th, 2015, 06:50 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jul 2014
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Need help with logistics of getting city to city in Italy


I am doing lots of research and planning for our honeymoon in Italy in September.

I'm trying to sort out the best ways of transferring cities.

We arrive in Venice, and are renting an apartment in the Dorsoduro area of Venice. I assume the apartment owner will give us directions for arriving at the apartment from the airport.

Then, we will be heading to Florence. We are staying 5 minutes from the Santa Maria Novella Train Station.

Then, we will be traveling to Rome and staying at the Saint Regis. The website for the hotel says "From the train station the Termini and Tiburtina rail stations are a few kilometres away and also offer taxi and private car service. From Termini Central, it is a 10min walk to The St. Regis Rome while you would require a Taxi from Tiburtina Station. "

Is the best way to use the trenitalia website and book tickets ahead of time? Any tips?

Any information is very helpful!

Thank you,

IsabelleandRyan is offline  
Old Jul 10th, 2015, 07:03 PM
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 8,158
I have often found it really helpful to check the Deutchebahn website for trains and times -- (you can enter from other countries as well and also select language).

We've booked ahead some times and printed tix at home, though I don't think it's always necessary. Other experienced posters will surely chime in.

Another terrific site is
annw is offline  
Old Jul 10th, 2015, 07:06 PM
Join Date: Jan 2009
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Trains are great in Italy. For the cheapest prices you can generally book up to 90 days in advance but tickets are generally non-changeable, non-refundable. But you can save quite a bit. Try trenitalia or italotreno (competitors). Note that many italotreno services arrive at Tiburtino, which you probably don't want. If you decide to book on the day, the automated ticket kiosks are dead simple to use.

From Venice airport, you have a number of choices: local bus, local direct bus, water bus (alilaguna) or private water taxi, with each being increasingly expensive. I've only used the bus which is easy, inexpensive and 30 minutes or so, depending on which bus you get). The bus takes you to Piazzale Roma, from where you could walk (there will be multiple small bridges) or take a vaporetto. Vaporetti are slow and expensive but nothing beats taking one down the Grand Canal (preferably just before dusk and without luggage).

For Rome, your options will be walking, taxi or bus. Bus routes and timetables are online. The best will depend on how easily you can manage your luggage and how important budget is. Personally, I'd be inclined to walk as you'll see stuff on the way and you won't have to manhandle luggage on and off the bus. Taxi would also be okay but can't comment as never used them in Rome.

Have a wonderful honeymoon!
dreamon is offline  
Old Jul 10th, 2015, 07:12 PM
Join Date: Jan 2009
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Agree with annw. I've found to be an invaluable source for train timetables, especially cross border but not for buying Italian train tickets. Seat61 is brilliant for lots of background information. Trenitalia allows you to print your tickets at home. I've found their site very easy to use and it has improved over the years. Some European train providers require you to present the credit card which you used to buy the tickets, on request (not sure how often they actually ask for this).
dreamon is offline  
Old Jul 10th, 2015, 07:15 PM
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>>>For the cheapest prices you can generally book up to 90 days in advance but tickets are generally non-changeable, non-refundable
kybourbon is online now  
Old Jul 10th, 2015, 07:38 PM
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Thanks for clarifying, kybourbon. I meant that, generally speaking, the cheaper the ticket, the more restrictions but I wasn't clear. The cheaper tickets, naturally, sell out more quickly.
dreamon is offline  
Old Jul 11th, 2015, 12:14 AM
Join Date: Jul 2006
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Rome transfer and movements within Rome are basically driven by shank's pony, bus, metro and urban trains. Depending on where you hotel is exactly you will be able to find which is the best solution for you during your stay, but also for the initial transfer (which may be affected by the amount of gear you have). Have a look at Google Maps and note the little bus and metro icons that tell you where you can be picked up.

Elsewhere the trains the thing, in Venice don't end up dragging bags for miles down alley ways (there are only alleyways in Venice) water bus or water taxi (for the sexy $$$ entry) are good options. I'd probably use bus and then waterbus as the more mundane ($) option.
bilboburgler is online now  
Old Jul 11th, 2015, 01:03 AM
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 6,534
Buses and trams in Italian cities can be tricky to use for new arrivals because when you are on the bus, it is not easy to spot any kind of street signage, and the stops are not pre-announced by the driver. Not to mention purchasing local tickets, etc.

A lot of people's final judgments about a city are shaped by many of their first reactions, which includes whether they had a relatively easy or difficult time hauling their luggage in transit. A lot of Italian streets are not roller-wheel friendly, there are often lots of stairs to negotiate, there are lots of warnings about pickpockets around the transportation nodes, street signage is not clear and it can be broiling hot or raining buckets.

Official taxis are usually plentiful, lined up right outside the train stations, and if the budget for the honeymoon isn't too tight, they can make for a happier entrance and exit, even for short rides you would otherwise walk if you weren't dealing with luggage.
sandralist is offline  
Old Jul 11th, 2015, 02:47 AM
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Unfortunately there can be folks who will accost you as you leave train stations and offer you a "ride." DON'T do that; as has been suggested, take an official taxi cab and to the St. Regis from Termini I would most definitely take a taxi...yes you can afford that. You can learn all about the Rome Metro at your leisure as well as the bus system but not while you are trying to get to your hotel the first time.
Dukey1 is offline  
Old Jul 11th, 2015, 05:23 AM
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As your apartment is in Dorsoduro, the best way to it may be via the Alilaguna boat straight from the airport, but as you say, the owner will advise you as to the easiest route.

To get to the railway station at the end of your stay there, most probably the Vaporetto [lines 1 or 2] up the Grand Canal to the station will be what you want, but by then you will be old Venice hands and you should be able to deal with that very efficiently.

Florence should be easy, but make sure that you have a good map showing the easiest route to your hotel - you don't want to be wandering around for ages looking out for it.

And I agree about getting [an official] cab to your hotel in Rome - the exploring can come later.
annhig is offline  
Old Jul 11th, 2015, 06:20 AM
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Congrats, IsabelleandRyan! You have good advice above. My two cents:

There should be a taxi line at the Termini in Rome. I assume you have google-mapped the walk from Termini to St. Regis and can decide if it's walkable for you.
TDudette is offline  
Old Jul 11th, 2015, 06:30 AM
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IIRC there's a vaporetto line along the Zattere, the side of Dorsoduro away from the Grand Canal. It was less busy and we took it to the train station. However it was not so easy to roll aboard bags.
Mimar is offline  
Old Jul 11th, 2015, 07:41 AM
Join Date: Jan 2007
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and be careful in Termini station - recent posts have documented organized scams there victimizing naive tourists - and for trains check for great info on discounted fares kybourbon, one of Fodor's Italian train experts, talks about - for general info on Italian trains I also like and And book as early as possible as discounted tickets are sold in limited numbers and can sell out quickly. If you want flexibility you can always IME buy full-fare tickets once there.
PalenQ is offline  
Old Jul 11th, 2015, 08:58 AM
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Thank you all so far! It's looking like Venice to Florence will be pretty easy (hopefully), and Florence to Rome will take the train then one of the office Rome taxis. We definitely lean towards paying more for convenience and ease, though young we aren't great at "rouging it" haha

Trying to decide if a water taxi is worth it in Venice. We may be able to just take the bus and have the owner of the rental unit meet us at the bus and take us to the apartment.

So now I just have to figure out what type of train tickets to buy!
IsabelleandRyan is offline  
Old Jul 11th, 2015, 09:22 AM
Join Date: Feb 2006
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Trying to decide if a water taxi is worth it in Venice. We may be able to just take the bus and have the owner of the rental unit meet us at the bus and take us to the apartment. >>

Between the cheapest option, [bus/vaporetto] and the dearest [water taxi] is the alilaguna, mentioned by me and others upthread. if your apartment is near to an alilaguna stop it may be the easiest and nicest way to arrive, but your apartment owner will be able to tell you whether this is the case.

It is unlikely that s/he would meet you at the bus terminus in Piazzalle Rome. More likely s/he will meet you at the vaporetto/alilaguna stop, or even at the apartment.

if you post the address of the apartment we may be able to help you work out the best route.
annhig is offline  
Old Jul 11th, 2015, 11:06 AM
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For Venice google street views around the are of the apartment and also Pza Roma and the train station - to get an idea of how many bridges you may run into.

Have no idea of how much luggage you have or how willing/able you are to schlep it - but I would look carefully and also ask the person whose apt you are renting. They will usually not meet you anywhere except at the apt.

We always get a hotel with a private dock and take a water taxi so the boat pilot and the hotel's bell staff can deal with the luggage - I am past the stage of willing to be pack mule woman, even though we pack fairly lightly - each a 24: or so wheelie and a carry-on that goes on the shoulder. (There is nothing as difficult as trying to deal with two wheelies at once - a larger one and a carry-on with wheels - they never cooperate.)
nytraveler is offline  
Old Jul 11th, 2015, 11:25 AM
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A pal of mine's husband broke his back pre-trip so she had to be Sherpa for both of them in Venice. No fun at all.

IsabelleandRyan, unless your apartment owner has already said s/he would fetch you, I believe annhig is correct. Do check. But from there, Dorsoduro area is a bit away (unless you know the shortcuts!).

Hub and I, if we weren't coming into Venice by train, took a car taxi from the airport to the Piazzelle Roma if we had luggage; bus if not much as it is so inexpensive.
TDudette is offline  
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