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Trenitalia Revamps and Tightens Promotional Fares

Trenitalia Revamps and Tightens Promotional Fares

Old Nov 17th, 2009, 09:19 AM
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GAC
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Trenitalia Revamps and Tightens Promotional Fares

BREAKING NEWS (from the Trenitalia website, NOT yet translated into English):

Beginning December 13, 2009, Trenitalia will revamp and significantly tighten the rules and restrictions for discounted promotional fares. Here is a brief summary of the new rules:

1. The "AMICA" fare for ES-City, IC, ICN and EXP trains will be eliminated.

2. All long-distance trains (including those previously eligible for the "AMICA" fare) will be eligible for a 15% and a 30% discount, if the ticket is purchased at least 7 and 15 days in advance. Seats at these fares will be capacity controlled and limited according to travel date, departure time, and fare class (first or second class).

3. RESERVATION CHANGES will be allowed, free of charge, ONCE ONLY up to 24 hours BEFORE train departure time, ONLY for a LATER train departure, and ONLY if discounted seats are available on the substitute train. Otherwise, the travellers must try to get a TICKET EXCHANGE (see below). Reservation changes can be made online, at manned ticket windows at rail stations, at automated ticket kiosks, via the telephone call center in Italy, and at authorized travel agencies in Italy. NO Reservation Changes allowed if you MISS YOUR TRAIN!!!

4. TICKET EXCHANGES will be allowed ONCE ONLY up to 24 hours BEFORE train departure, ONLY for a later train departure, by paying the DIFFERENCE IN PRICE between the "full fare" ticket for the new train and the discounted fare held. Ticket exchanges can be done ONLY in person and NOT via the website or by telephone. No Ticket Exchanges allowed if you MISS YOUR TRAIN.

5. TICKET REFUNDS will be allowed up to 24 hours BEFORE train departure, with a penalty of 20% (but no refund if amount to be refunded is 10 Euros or less). Refunds are processed at manned ticket windows at rail station, or at authorized travel agencies in Italy which actually sold the ticket. No ticket refunds allowed if you MISS YOUR TRAIN.

6. "HOP ON" PRIVILEGES (without a reservation change): will be allowed, for substitute trains of the same or different category, which depart UP TO ONE HOUR BEFORE and ONE HOUR AFTER the scheduled departure time of the train reserved, by paying the DIFFERENCE IN FARE (in case higher), PLUS a "fee" of 8 Euros. "HOP ON" passengers MUST FLAG a ticket agent on board the new train as soon as they board. No refund is given if the difference in fare is less than what was paid for the original ticket. Ticketless passengers (holding electronic tickets) may NOT "HOP ON" a "regionale" or an "international" (e.g. EC, ECN) train. The "HOP-ON" privilege is useful if you've MISSED YOUR TRAIN (and consequently can't request a reservation change or a ticket exchange).

NOTE: This replaces the previous 3-hour "grace period" to "hop on" a later departing train.

COMMENT: The rules have changed significantly. What we "learned" previously must now be forgotten, and the new rules must be learned. In particular, discounted tickets will require a longer advance purchase, and the restrictions have become significantly more onerous.

Several other promotional fares will also be offered, some limited to specified timeframes.

www.ferroviedellostato.it

http://www.trenitalia.com/cms/...CM1000003f16f90aRCRD (Italian only)


http://www.trenitalia.com/cms/...CM1000003f16f90aRCRD (Italian only)
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Old Nov 17th, 2009, 11:23 AM
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Effective December 13, 2009, Trenitalia ALSO revamps the rules and restrictions concerning its "base" fare (regular undiscounted) tickets for long-distance trains. The restrictions are more "liberal" than those for the promotional fares described above. The website which describes these new rules is currently in Italian only, but here is a VERY SIMPLIFIED recap in English:

1. Trains affected: AV, AV-Fast, ES, ES-Fast, ES-City, IC, ICN, EXP

NOTE: "regionale" trains are NOT affected. No seat reservations are allowed on these commuter trains.

2. RESERVATION CHANGES: allowed ONCE ONLY, free of charge, up to ONE HOUR AFTER SCHEDULED DEPARTURE of the originally reserved train. Reservation changes PRIOR to scheduled train departure may be requested online, at self-service ticket kiosks, via the Trenitalia call center in Italy, at manned agent windows at rail stations, at authorized travel agencies in Italy, and (in the case of "Frecciarossa" and "Frecciargento" trains only), at the mobile manned help stations at the head of the track.

In case of a paperless (electronic) ticket, the rules are much more restrictive.

Reservation changes within the ONE HOUR GRACE PERIOD AFTER SCHEDULED TRAIN DEPARTURE may be requested at manned agent windows, self-service kiosks, or at the mobile manned help stations (only for "Frecciarossa" and "Frecciargento" trains). Same rule for electronic tickets.

2. TICKET EXCHANGES: allowed once only, up to ONE HOUR AFTER SCHEDULED DEPARTURE of the originally reserved train. You pay any higher difference in fare. Go to a manned agent window for a ticket exchange.

3. TICKET REFUND: Allow prior to scheduled train departure, with a 20% forfeiture. Also allowed up to ONE HOUR AFTER SCHEDULED DEPARTURE of the reserved train, with a 50% forfeiture. Go to a manned agent window. No refund of any amount less than or equal to 10 Euros. Special rules for electronic tickets.

4. "HOP-ON PRIVILEGES" (without a reservation change): allowed during the period ONE HOUR BEFORE TO ONE HOUR AFTER SCHEDULED DEPARTURE of the originally reserved train, by paying any higher difference in fare, plus a "fee" of 8 Euros. "HOP-ON" passengers must FLAG a ticket agent immediately upon boarding the substitute train. Passengers with electronic tickets may NOT board a "regionale" or "international" (e.g. EC, ECN) train.

NOTE: Because passengers holding tickets at the "base" fare are always allowed to make a reservation change as described above, utilizing the "HOP-ON" privilege is STRONGLY DISCOURAGED.

OSERVATION: Keeping all these "rules" straight is a real undertaking.

Here are the complete rules for the "base" ticket:

http://www.trenitalia.com/cms/...CM1000003f16f90aRCRD (Italian only)
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Old Nov 17th, 2009, 11:35 AM
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Thanks as usual for the updates

And friends have told me now that with a Eurailpass (or Italy Railpass) it now only costs 10 euros to ride the ES trains, down from 15 euros before but still too much in my opinion.
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Old Nov 17th, 2009, 11:43 AM
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One more time on the hyperlink above:

http://www.trenitalia.com/cms/v/inde...003f16f90aRCRD
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Old Nov 17th, 2009, 12:17 PM
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Old Nov 17th, 2009, 12:22 PM
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They're sounding more and more like an airline. How long before they charge for bags?
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Old Nov 17th, 2009, 01:16 PM
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As contrasted to the case with airlines, there are no enforced luggage limitations on Trenitalia trains (or, for that matter, on most intercity buses or on car ferries). You can bring as much luggage as you wish (or as you dare to, given the hassles involved).

HINT: IF you've just MISSED YOUR RESERVED TRAIN by LESS THAN ONE HOUR, and are holding a "base" or "flessibile" ticket (NOT a discounted promotional ticket), you have the CHOICE of standing in line to get a reservation change to a later-departing train, or exercing your "HOP-ON" privilege, as described above. It is always better to get a reservation change. That way, you avoid having to pay the 8-Euro "fee" when you "HOP-ON" a later departing train without a new reservation. (If you have a promotional discount ticket and MISS YOUR TRAIN, you CANNOT request a reservation change. You can only "HOP-ON" a later departing train, as explained above).

IF IF you hold a ticket for one of the "Frecciarossa" or "Frecciargento" trains, you can ALSO make the reservation change at the mobile manned help station at the track head for the substitute "Frecciarossa" or "Frecciargento" train you want to board. This is almost always faster than standing in line at the manned ticket window, or even using an automated ticket kiosk. By using the manned help station at the track head, you may avoid MISSING the later-departing train.
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Old Nov 17th, 2009, 03:56 PM
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>>>And friends have told me now that with a Eurailpass (or Italy Railpass) it now only costs 10 euros to ride the ES trains, down from 15 euros before but still too much in my opinion.
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Old Nov 17th, 2009, 03:59 PM
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It seems the site is down at the moment as links aren't working.
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Old Nov 17th, 2009, 06:00 PM
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Thank you for all your hard work, once again, GAC.
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Old Nov 17th, 2009, 06:38 PM
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GAC, thank you so much. But I know have a headache trying to figure all this out
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