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Venice/Rome Plane Versus Train: Face-Off Competition

Venice/Rome Plane Versus Train: Face-Off Competition

Dec 20th, 2010, 06:53 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,398
Venice/Rome Plane Versus Train: Face-Off Competition

An extremely common question asked by travellers is whether it's better to travel between Venice and Rome by train or by plane.

Without question, if you're connecting at either VCE or FCO to or from an international flight with either Rome or Venice as your final destination, you're usually better off continuing by plane (assuming a decent connection), rather than going into the central city and taking the train.

But if you're departing from central Venice or Rome, is it better to take the train or the plane? Let's explore the pros and cons of each method, in this "face-off" competition:


Carriers: Alitalia or Easy Jet

Fares: Currently, as low as 49.25 Euros on Alitalia or 40.94 on Easyjet, in each case paying by credit card and checking ONE piece of luggage not weighing more than 23 kgs (AZ) or 20 Kgs (Easy Jet). Fares vary considerably according to date, flight and advance purchase. In some cases, the actual airfare can be MUCH higher.

Costs of surface transportation by public transport: you must add 8 or 14 Euros (train or bus) for Rome and 3 Euros for Venice (ATVO blue bus). MUCH more expensive by taxi or water taxi.

Time: at least 3 hours, 45 minutes (with no delays): 30 minutes to reach the airport; 30 minutes for check-in; 30 minutes for security clearance; 60 minutes flight; 30 minutes to de-plane and collect luggage; 15 minutes waiting time for bus/train; 30 minutes to reach your hotel. Depending on circumstances (such as bad weather), total travel time can be MUCH longer.

BY TRAIN (Trenitalia):

Fares: regular second class reserved seat on the hourly AV Frecciargento train: 73 Euros. On the slower IC train: 42.50 Euros.

"MINI" advance purchase promotional fares: Effective January 24, 2011, as low as 29 Euros on the Frecciargento. On the slower IC train, as low as 17 Euros. BEWARE: significant restrictions on reservation changes and refunds. Capacity-controlled. Must be purchased no later than midnight of the day beforehand. Other "MINI" fares for the Frecciargento train are higher than 29 Euros, but lower than 73 Euros.

Time: On the Frecciargento: 3 hours, 48 minutes (same as total travel time by plane). On the IC train: 6 hrs., 13 mins.


With the REGULAR fare for the Frecciargento train and the LOWEST airfare (plus surface transportation costs), VERY SLIGHT ADVANTAGE PLANE (but the train is less stressful for most travellers).

With the REGULAR fare for the Frecciargento train and a higher airfare, ADVANTAGE TRAIN in most cases.

With one of the "MINI" fares for the Frecciargento train, ADVANTAGE TRAIN in most cases.

CHEAPEST OPTION: 17 Euros with the lowest "MINI" fare on the IC train.

Any comments are welcome.
GAC is offline  
Dec 20th, 2010, 08:12 PM
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 45,322
Hello GAC, although a friend now lives in Florence instead of Venice when he did live in Venice for a long time he always took the train from Venice to Rome. Less hassle, less problem with luggage and of course as you know both train stations are in the center of each city. Personally, I would take the train also.
LoveItaly is offline  
Dec 20th, 2010, 09:42 PM
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 210
Train. Hands down. No contest.
LunaBella is offline  
Dec 20th, 2010, 11:07 PM
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 249
normally i would agree that the train is a no brainer as far as the added time/hassle with airport security etc. however I have flown AirOne from Venice to Rome..painless quick security check on board at 1545 took off at 1600 landed in Rome at 1655...took train to Trastevere....no hassle. Now this was probably the easiest airport arrival to boarding and landing to exiting I have ever seen but it sure beat 4 hours via train..at least this once anyhoo.
russwuf is offline  
Dec 21st, 2010, 07:38 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 5,129
Russwuf, how long did your journey actually take from city centre to city centre? The time on the plane from runway to runway is quite irrelevant.
GeoffHamer is offline  
Dec 21st, 2010, 09:15 AM
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 75,913
And carbon footprints should be a factor IMO even to casual travelers. I would assume the train is much greener than taking polluting vehicles, as usual, to the airport, then planes, one of the most polluting forms of transport if not the most and then smog-belching vehicles from airport into town.

Or does anyone really care about carbon footprints?
PalenQ is offline  
Dec 22nd, 2010, 05:48 AM
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 1,668
Taking the train probably cuts your carbon emisisons by at least 80% versus flying, even before taking into account the upper atmosphere issue, where CO2 emitted at high altitude is thought to do 2 to 3 times the damage of the same CO2 emitted at ground level. Taking a flight for such a short journey really ought to be a no-no now...

But frankly, you can chill on a relaxing train ride centre to centre in 3 hours 45 minutes with no check-in or security hassle, versus all that stress being treated like a suspect at the airport and a naughty child on the plane.

Oh yes, and the high-sped trains are around 90% punctual (measured as on time or within 15 minutes of time) versus short haul airlines whih typically average 63-68% on time by the same measurement.
Man_in_seat_61 is online now  

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