Trenitalia troubles :(

Mar 11th, 2008, 02:18 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 307
Trenitalia troubles :(

We've decided we want to go ahead and book our first train fare (and I do mean first EVER train fare) before we get to Venice.

We will be traveling from Venice to Florence.

I have gone to the Trenitalia site, registered...all is well there.

I find the Amica fare I want for 11 April, first class...two passengers, choose the window, and the first attempt got us to the pay screen.

I enter credit card number, exp date, and that ccv number (that IS the number on the back of the card, correct, the little 3 digit one?

I double check...all is correct, hit buy, and it tells me that the ccv number is wrong, recheck, and then double check all the other info is correct, and then am told my credit card has been declined?

I call the credit card company and it has not been declined by them.


I go back to trenitalia, log in, find the same time, the same train, the same class...choose it, and am told it is not available to choose another time/class.

I don't think the seats are gone, in that 5 minute window, I think something is wonky with the site.

My cursor even went from a normal pulsing little cursor to a bullseye cursor on that site the second go around.

What the heck am I doing wrong? I'm using a mastercard...did I read somewhere that is an issue? There is an option to use Master Card, so I'd think not.

I think I'm a wee bit frustrated!

Karen *who wonders should she try again tomorrow when they are more likely staffed...will I do better then?*
lkemerson is offline  
Mar 11th, 2008, 02:27 PM
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 10,015
This problem shows up about once or twice day. I am a Citibank customer, and using there 'virtual card number' I was able to purchase on Trenitalia with no problems after my normal cc # was rejected just as yours has been.

If you are a Citibank customer, checkonline for virtual card number. If not, ask your card co if they have a similar feature.

Others here on Fodors may have other suggestions, including calling a travel agency in Italy, using US agency, etc.
J62 is online now  
Mar 11th, 2008, 03:19 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 307
thank you so very much.

I called my card companies, and neither use the 'virtual card number', darn it all to heck and back.

They have it on file that I am traveling, and it isn't an issue with them...tis the site.

Looks like I'll be calling Marco at Pantheon Travel in Rome, per another lister, unless someone else chimes in with another suggestion. I looked at Italia Rail and the same fare that would cost me $117 Amica via Trenitalia, will cost me $160. that's WAY too much more. I'm thinking a travel agent would surely not charge me 50 over the cost of the ticket...would they?

Frustrated in Michigan
aka Karen
lkemerson is offline  
Mar 11th, 2008, 03:38 PM
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 648
Karen, I would try to be patient and try again tomorrow, and if that doesn't work, try once a day for a few days. If that doesn't work just buy them in Venice, it's very easy. The Amica fare is only about €9 cheaper than the regular fare and I'd rather just pay the regular fare in Venice then go thru a third party.
LAwoman is offline  
Mar 11th, 2008, 03:38 PM
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 547
Wait til you get to Italy to buy the tickets, avoid the hassle. A standard fare on an ES train, 2nd class is 32 Euros on Trenitalia and the Amica fare is 26 Euros. It's only a 2.5 hour trip and second class is fine. A lot of trains go between the 2 cities daily.

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2Italy is offline  
Mar 11th, 2008, 03:38 PM
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 192
Why don't you just purchase when you get to Venice. It is VERY easy to do and directions on the machine are in English. There are also walk-up windows. Just check the site to check out the train schedule and allow yourself enough time.
kadurk49 is offline  
Mar 11th, 2008, 04:00 PM
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 14,584

Please don't despair; it isn't you. The Trenitalia website is a huge PIA. As someone here has said, it wasn't really designed for users from other countries, even though many people from other countries buy their tickets on the site.

I recently found a great train/car deal on Trenitalia, only to find that I couldn't book it on the website, try as I might.

As many said, you can get the tickets in Italy. Also, you can use the Pantheon travel agency and not pay a fee. I do believe that certified travel agencies in Italy get some commision on train tickets. In any case, they will charge a minimal handling fee, but probably nothing at all.

You can also get your tickets at any certified agency in Italy once you get there. Perhaps ask your hotel if there is a travel agency nearby that sells train tickets. It can save you a trip to the station.

Isn't it a kicker to have all that beautiful information right there on the Trenitalia website, and not be able to make use of it?

I print out the page with the train I want, just to feel like I'm using the darn thing. I do this for friends and clients, too.

Are you flying direct to Venice?
tuscanlifeedit is online now  
Mar 11th, 2008, 05:06 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 307
I don't mind buying my other tickets once I get to Italy, but the anal, type-A, control freak to the 10th power, Karen...wants this ticket bought and over with.

I want that 8:50 a.m. train ticket.

What's the difference between 1st and second class on the train, besides the obvious (cost). Seats more roomy? What, better windows? Less cramped?

And I am flying directly from Dublin to Venice.

Yes, that site is a major PITA, AND to compound it, there is no way to get in touch with them to fix this!


Karen, who is now going to go take a bubble bath and try again, tomorrow!

Thank you all, and if any of you Trenitalia people are reading this...please fix whatever it is that is funking up the works!
lkemerson is offline  
Mar 11th, 2008, 05:17 PM
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 32,576
Most 2nd cl ES trains will look like the picture on the right that says passenger area. It's 2 seats on each side of the aisle facing 2 seats with a shared table in between. 1st cl will have 2 seats on 1 side and only 1 on the other.

2nd cl is more comfortable and roomy than economy plane seats.

Here's a link for a 1st cl.
kybourbon is offline  
Mar 11th, 2008, 05:23 PM
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 145
Well... a few days ago I did this myself, trying to buy tickets from Venice to Budapest.

After a few tries, I was blocked. Just today got this email from trenitalia:


Your access credentials (user id) are no more active due to credit card matters, found by Credit Card Payment Circuit.
In order to enable again your user-id and to allow you to utilize Trenitalia On Line ticketing service we ask you to send us a fax to 06/44104036 or an email to this address, indicating:

your user id
your telephone number including the country code ( for example 0039 for Italy)
the photocopy of an identification document or the scansion if you send it via mail
the photocopy of the tax code number (if you have the Italian citizenship) or the scansion if you send it via mail

Within 48 hours you will receive the outcome of your request via email directly to your e-mail address.


Mind you. I happen to speak Italian and I travelled quite a lot on trenitalia, but never booked on line. This would be my first time.

Looks like they DON'T WANT YOU TO BUY ON LINE. That is the only conclusion I can think of.

jfcarli is offline  
Mar 11th, 2008, 06:05 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 307

Thank you for the visual, which now raises the question...where does your luggage go?
lkemerson is offline  
Mar 11th, 2008, 06:13 PM
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 14,584
Smaller pieces of luggage fit in the rack above your head. For things that don't fit there, there is a luggage storage area in each car. I bicycle chain my luggage to the storage area. Some people think that is crazy. I don't care.
tuscanlifeedit is online now  
Mar 11th, 2008, 08:00 PM
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 45,322
I have never understood why people put thenselves through the trauma of trying to buy a train ticket(s) via Trenitalia. It is a good website for checking routes, times etc. but just buy the tickets when in Italy. And second class is fine especially when just going by train from Venice to Florence. Anyway, happy travels Ikemerson.
LoveItaly is offline  
Mar 17th, 2008, 07:12 AM
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 145
As tuscanlifeedit said above, you can put your luggage in the proper racks above your head.

If you have large luggage items which are difficult or too heavy to place above, or if you have too much luggage, you can leave in the train corridor.

If that is not available or not pratical to be done, you can always leave your luggage in the hall which exists just as you enter the train. In this particular case, I would recommend you to check your luggage every train stop to make sure someone "inadvertedly" does not carry your luggage away.

I have never placed anything in the luggage store area which tuscan refers to.
jfcarli is offline  

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