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Sold out tickets 5 months before departure in Italy?

Sold out tickets 5 months before departure in Italy?

Old Mar 25th, 2022, 04:59 AM
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Sold out tickets 5 months before departure in Italy?

Hello,

I'm planning a train trip in Italy during August/2022 and I'm seeing a few train tickets already sold out 5 months before departure.

For example, the trip Milan to Florence by train seems that almost all Treintalia trains are already sold out for travels during Friday in August/2022 (on days 12, 19 or 26), with only two trains available right now for those days. While Italo still don't let you book anything after July 22nd.

I find really strange to see train tickets sold out 5 months before the real travel.
Last week I couldn't even find any travels for day 26 (it wasn't showing any travel available), and one week later they're mostly sold out? I doesn't make sense.

So my question is, Is this normal behavior with August trains in Italy (getting sold out way earlier than the travel) or it's just Trenitalia acting weird?
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Old Mar 25th, 2022, 05:21 AM
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It would be fairly unusual to see an entire train sold out if we were talking about a train TOMORROW.
If we're talking 5 months ahead you can be absolutely CERTAIN this is about data loading, data missing or train not properly loaded yet.
No-one here buys train tickets, or bread or milk, or puts fuel in their car, for August when it's only March. Just wait, and book when it's all loaded and working.
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Old Mar 25th, 2022, 05:44 AM
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This is a typical question asked by foreign (particularly non-European) tourists. Indeed, no-one wants to buy train tickets several months in advance in Italy, and Trenitalia won't sell them; they load the trains on the system only a few weeks in advance.
FYI, the Trenitalia website will show fully booked connections (and tell you there are no tickets available). If you see no trains, it's because they haven't been loaded yet. Not sure about the trains you say are "mostly sold out"; what does the website actually show? Regardless, no, they can't actually be sold out this far ahead. Check again in three months or so.
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Old Mar 25th, 2022, 05:53 AM
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This is what I see for a random date Aug 10th.
Trenitalia does in fact let me buy a ticket for August, Milan to Florence. It shows the one train has an available seat, but others show sold out...
So as others have said it's likely a glitch in their system.







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Old Mar 25th, 2022, 07:09 AM
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Thanks everyone! As you have guessed, I'm not european and have little knowledge on european trains.

Now i'm more relieved knowing this is a glitch. With your tips I will check again 3 months or so before the expected date to buy them.

Last edited by wheresjohnny; Mar 25th, 2022 at 07:15 AM.
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Old Mar 25th, 2022, 07:31 AM
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Originally Posted by J62 View Post
This is what I see for a random date Aug 10th.
Trenitalia does in fact let me buy a ticket for August, Milan to Florence. It shows the one train has an available seat, but others show sold out...
So as others have said it's likely a glitch in their system.


I've just checked and there are tickets available for all trains in the previous week, and this situation (almost all trains being shown as sold out) begins on the Monday of that week. So, yeah, it's a glitch; i suspect the train times were loaded but the tickets were not made available for purchase yet, so they show up as sold out, or something like that.
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Old Mar 25th, 2022, 08:59 AM
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they load the trains on the system only a few weeks in advance.
This the typical misleading info given by those who don't know much about Trenitalia. They load the trains up to the next timetable change, June 12 and December 11. June 12 is the deadline, most high speed trains running between June 12 and December 11 will be fully uploaded in early May.

Check the schedules only a few weeks in advance and finding the cheapest discounted tickets will be almost impossible.

Trenitalia.com has been attacked by hackers this week. I bet the ICT guys frantically blocked some sales while trying to understand what was happening. I think they closed "fireproof doors" in the quickest way they could find: flagging trains as sold out. Starting from those running in 5 months.

The site will have glitches here and there for weeks.

Last edited by Falcio; Mar 25th, 2022 at 09:13 AM.
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Old Mar 25th, 2022, 08:36 PM
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That's one of the reasons I aborted a family trip to Spain in 2013. We are unfamiliar with train travel in Europe and everything I read seemed to indicate that I had to have every train ride in Spain booked months and months in advance, knowing our itinerary down to the minute for a multi week vacation I found it too daunting and intimidating and not worth it so we went to Venezuela instead to see my wife's family. It turned out to be the best decision for us anyway at that time. We are going to Spain in September, but are taking a tour so no train rides between cities. I guess I still have some lingering trepidation. If one wants to go Madrid-Cordoba-Seville-Granada-Valencia-Barcelona with nights in each city, can't one just buy the tickets that day or the day before? Sorry if this hijacks the thread
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Old Mar 26th, 2022, 05:04 AM
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I'm glad you had a good trip to Venezuela but there was no reason whatever to cancel your trip to Spain. I have no idea what you read, or where you read it, but not only do you NOT need to have every train trip booked months ahead, you might find it difficult to do so because Spain has a tendency to load its timetables later than other countries. The reason to book ahead is to get a cheaper fare, just as with airlines, but you don't have to, and it doesn't have to be many months ahead. My last trip I got a discount booking online just a day or two ahead. (Yes, it was cheaper to book online rather than at the station.)
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Old Mar 26th, 2022, 06:49 AM
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Originally Posted by Diharv View Post
That's one of the reasons I aborted a family trip to Spain in 2013.
In short, you did not understand a single line I wrote above about train travel in Italy and, I'm sure, you did not understand anything you read about train travel in Spain.

Trains do not sell out and, at least in Italy, there are so many runs between the main cities that one can enter a station without checking the schedules and be sure to be on a train to any city within 50 minutes.

I don't know why Americans are intimidated by something that teens all over the world do by themselves at 14, but a railway system works more or less like an airline. The main difference is that, when a train routinely sells out, unlike airlines the train companies can easily add more cars (i.e. more seats) or more runs. And no security checks lasting for hours... and no immigration when you get off in another Schengen Country!

Inside stations there are monitors and boards hanging everywhere. Look for a one headed Departures and find a train going where you want to go within a reasonable amount of time. Then buy a ticket for that train either online or at the counter, walk to the track posted on the same Departures monitors and get on.

If you are not sure that's the right train, show a conductor your train number.

If you are not able to find your seat, find an empty one in your car and wait for the conductor. He may be scold you a little, but they won't arrest you. The rest of the world is nice, smart and unarmed. Relax.

Last edited by Falcio; Mar 26th, 2022 at 06:54 AM.
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Old Mar 26th, 2022, 07:45 AM
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Falcio - I think that you are being somewhat harsh on those who come here because they don't understand the train systems in Europe which TBF aren't all the same as each other either. How are people supposed to know that timetables typically don't load until a certain date, or that there will nearly always be seats on popular routes, let alone that a particular system was hacked and so isn't behaving itself anyway? How are people supposed to know about Man in seat 61 or Road to Rio unless someone tells them? I think it's very easy to forget that we all had to learn this stuff once and that there are undoubtedly still daft things for us to do whilst travelling despite our "superior" knowledge. I know that I could fill a book with them.
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Old Mar 26th, 2022, 10:25 AM
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I didn't actually have the benefit of reading in 2013 what Falcio wrote yesterday about train travel in Italy, so I guess I am the poorer for it. For what it's worth I understood everything I read about the train travel in Spain at that time. Maybe it was the wrong information but I know what I read because I was wondering why Spain was so different from other places. Back then, I had also assumed that simply buying a Eurail pass meant you could go anywhere in Europe unlimited but found out that was not the case. But, despite the advice being smart ass and condescending, I did learn something and will relax in the future and not worry about it so much beforehand .This being for the proposed trip after Spain, which will be Italy in 2023. We are by no means inexperienced travellers, but Europe, and it's rail network is completely new to us. I joined this forum to be part of a community and learn more about travel which we hope to make a major part of our newly retired lifestyle, but if this is the treatment one gets for not knowing what the "experts" already know, then I guess I'll limit my participation to reading only. Also, not American.

Last edited by Diharv; Mar 26th, 2022 at 10:36 AM.
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Old Mar 26th, 2022, 01:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Falcio;[url=tel:17347148
17347148[/url]]This the typical misleading info given by those who don't know much about Trenitalia. They load the trains up to the next timetable change, June 12 and December 11. June 12 is the deadline, most high speed trains running between June 12 and December 11 will be fully uploaded in early May.

Check the schedules only a few weeks in advance and finding the cheapest discounted tickets will be almost impossible.
It's not misleading, it's what I've seen from experience. It's definitely not always the case that all the trains up to the next timetable change get loaded to the system by the previous timetable change, even excluding exceptional events like the recent attack on Trenitalia's system.
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Old Mar 26th, 2022, 01:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Diharv View Post
I didn't actually have the benefit of reading in 2013 what Falcio wrote yesterday about train travel in Italy, so I guess I am the poorer for it. For what it's worth I understood everything I read about the train travel in Spain at that time. Maybe it was the wrong information but I know what I read because I was wondering why Spain was so different from other places. Back then, I had also assumed that simply buying a Eurail pass meant you could go anywhere in Europe unlimited but found out that was not the case. But, despite the advice being smart ass and condescending, I did learn something and will relax in the future and not worry about it so much beforehand .This being for the proposed trip after Spain, which will be Italy in 2023. We are by no means inexperienced travellers, but Europe, and it's rail network is completely new to us. I joined this forum to be part of a community and learn more about travel which we hope to make a major part of our newly retired lifestyle, but if this is the treatment one gets for not knowing what the "experts" already know, then I guess I'll limit my participation to reading only. Also, not American.
I am truly sorry that you got that treatment from one contributor here but please rest assured that we are not all like that. In fact this is one of the most supportive and friendly on line communities I have found, but like all communities we have our little foibles and today you met one. I hope that in future you do contribute as I'm sure that we have at least as much to learn from you as you do from us.
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Old Mar 26th, 2022, 03:53 PM
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It's definitely not always the case that all the trains up to the next timetable change get loaded to the system by the previous timetable change
It is, and it couldn't be different. The 2 timetable changes happen twice an year all over continental Europe on the same days every year in every country: on The second Sunday of June and on the second Sunday of December.

Railway systems are interconnected, if one company did not finish to upload its new schedules by midnight of the previous day there would be an impact all over Europe. It would be like throwing a stone in a pond of water. And it would make the front pages on professional journals all over Europe.
Some trains run only on XMas day, but they are uploaded on the system by December 11.
A single company may decide to add new trains on a specific route after the timetable change for that season, but it's extremely rare and complex. And, anyway, it's a new train, not a train uploaded behind schedule. In 2019 Italotreno added new runs along the Adriatic Coast because of the high demand, but they announced it during a press conference and it was a big event. One can't plan a journey based on exceptional events.

You know nothing about how railways work and you have given misleading info about the "few weeks" as a rule always applied. It's true only in the few weeks before the next timetable change. Get over it.

I think that kids coming in last during running races do not deserve a prize, so I won't cheer up the kids here because they were offended by truth.

Last edited by Falcio; Mar 26th, 2022 at 04:03 PM.
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Old Mar 26th, 2022, 06:02 PM
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Railway systems are interconnected, if one company did not finish to upload its new schedules by midnight of the previous day there would be an impact all over Europe. It would be like throwing a stone in a pond of water
Really? For international trains, OK, but kindly explain what difference it makes to the Italian train system if Spanish domestic trains are loaded late.

I have a lot more faith in Mark Smith, aka the Man in Seat61 than I do in a random poster on the internet, and this is what he says about bahn.de, the go-to site for train timetables in Europe (yes, he can speak for himself, but it's the middle of the night in the UK):
  • Timetable changes in June & December: It usually holds data only until the next Europe-wide timetable change, which happens twice a year at midnight on the second Saturday in June & December. So don't be surprised if it shows no trains at all running in late December if you ask it in August, as that's beyond the mid-December timetable change. Data for dates after the mid-December timetable change usually starts to come online by mid-October and isn't 100% reliable until early December. Simply make an enquiry for a date this side of the timetable change and assume that trains won't change much.
  • This system is very good, but some railways (typically the Spanish, Hungarians, Polish & Balkan railways) can be late in supplying data, and data can be unreliable in some parts of the Balkans, for example. If you get strange results you can try the railway operator's own website instead, for example www.renfe.com for Spain or www.ose.gr for Greece. There's a complete list of rail websites on the useful links page.
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Old Mar 26th, 2022, 06:31 PM
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Falcio: Sure don't know why you need to be so testy / officious (39 posts in 7 years would seem to indicate maybe some 'encounters/issue' in the past) . . . but "I don't know why Americans are intimidated by something that teens all over the world do by themselves at 14, but a railway system works more or less like an airline." is totally understandable to me - probably 90+% of Americans have never been on a train.

From another of your recent posts - "
Once again, you don't know much but you feel the need to have an opinion about everything . . ."

Seems to be a pattern here. If you want people to learn from your vast knowledge, as they say, you get more flies with honey than . . .
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Old Mar 26th, 2022, 09:59 PM
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I don't know if anybody has heard of this thing called Covid? In the days of yore before Covid schedules would be loaded further in advance. In these dark days the railways have had to rejig things so often they aren't rushing out the schedules.

thursdaysd the reason the schedules get posted is there are people making connections from a Spanish local train to a French local train to an Italian local train.
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Old May 19th, 2022, 09:23 PM
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What about sold out tickets 6 weeks before departure?

What about tickets that are sold out with 6 weeks to go? We are looking to get a direct train Rome to Salerno on 30 June and today the Trenitali site is telling me that the 10:10am train is sold out?
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Old May 19th, 2022, 09:30 PM
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Welcome to Fodors clareking6447. You have tacked your post to an existing (and somewhat testy) thread. It would be better if you started a new thread of your own.
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