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What's the best way to book train tickets Florence to Venice?

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What's the best way to book train tickets Florence to Venice?

Old Jun 13th, 2005, 12:02 PM
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What's the best way to book train tickets Florence to Venice?

Hi, everyone,
I'm still working on that 30th anniversary trip! I've booked flights to & from Paris, and from Paris to Florence. Now, we're to the point of booking train from Florence to Venice.
I've searched this forum and have found many posts on trying to book trains, but it seems that there's a lot of confusing websites out there. Am I better off having AAA do it for me, or is there a website out there that has much better deals?
Thanks in advance!
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Old Jun 13th, 2005, 12:59 PM
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Hi cybertraveler, I just always purchased the tickets at the train station. You can also buy them through some travel agents. Have a wonderful trip.
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Old Jun 13th, 2005, 01:00 PM
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ira
 
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Hi Cy,

You cn purchase tickets online as early as 60 days in advance at www.trenitalia.com for the same price as in Italy.

If you buy ES* tickets (recommended) your confirmation is your ticket; nothing else to do.

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Old Jun 13th, 2005, 01:11 PM
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I can testify that the electronic tickets purchased from the trenitalia web site work fine. On a recent trip I showed the conductor the electronic ticket printed out from the web. He entered the number in a hand held device and give me a reciept. Incidentally, the tickets for the ES train include a seat assignment as part of the transaction. Doing this task beforehand saves time and difficulty. Highly recommended.
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Old Jun 13th, 2005, 02:41 PM
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We went the other direction -- from Venice to Florence and Florence to Rome, and in both cases just showed up at the train station, bought our tickets and headed for the platform.

Easy as pie.

Jules
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Old Jun 13th, 2005, 03:18 PM
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I traveled through Italy last autumn. For two out of my three train journeys, I purchased the tickets online on Trenitalia's website. Each time, I used the automated machines to print my tickets. I punched in my last name, a reservation code I got when I purchased the tickets, and out they came. It took a matter of minutes. It was all very easy and convenient.

I later spoke to friends who traveled to Italy often, and they laughed at my need to purchase the tickets in advance. They said all I needed to do was show up at the station and buy a ticket. For the last leg, I took their advice and simply bought a ticket using the machines once again. It was very easy.

All in all, I found either purchasing online from Trenitalia, or just using the machines at the station very easy. You shouldn't have any problems. If you do buy the tickets in advance, buy them from Trenitalia, as some of these booking services charge a service fee.

Buon viaggio!
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Old Jun 13th, 2005, 03:25 PM
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You'll find Trenitalia people, dressed in orange vests and able to speak English, roaming the station in Florence who will help you if you need to print out your ticket at a kiosk.
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Old Jun 13th, 2005, 03:49 PM
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Are reservations mandatory on some trains? In the summer is it also a definite that you can buy tix in the station?
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Old Jun 13th, 2005, 04:01 PM
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P.S. I see you need reservations for an ES train. If these are bought online, can you print out the tix? There is no time to get them by snailmail at this point. Also, what happens if flight is late and you miss the train? Can you use the tix for the next one?
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Old Jun 13th, 2005, 04:25 PM
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The ticket is electronic like a plane ticket. It's the number that counts. Print out the electronic ticket from your computer. and you're done. No need to deal with ticket machines at the statuon. Just get on the train and go. And yes they can be changed if you miss your flight. The web site expalins.
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Old Jun 13th, 2005, 04:37 PM
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I would never book thru AAA. Wait till you get there-lots of daily trains. Really just a case of what train and what class. Try to either book thru a travel agent when you arrive in Italy or buy the ticket at the station from a self serve terminal. Line ups at the ticket wickets can be long...or at least they always seem long to me. If you are in Rome, the AMEX beside the Spanish steps sells Trenitalia tickets.
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Old Jun 13th, 2005, 05:43 PM
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We bought our tickets at the AmEx office in Florence. No line and we could ask the person questions. Just remember to punch them in the yellow machines on the platform before you get on the train--it's a 5E penalty if you don't.
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Old Jun 13th, 2005, 06:09 PM
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Hi, Thanks everyone for all the information. I took the trains 3 years ago, and a travel agent made the reservations (now out of business). (I don't remember having to have our ticket punched, though).
Now that I'm a braver and more experienced traveler, I thought that I might be able to get a better price if I book myself online.
Being a somewhat compulsively organized type, I think it would be too much of a challenge to put off buying my ticket until I get there, but maybe I could take that leap...
I think I'll try the website and see about electronic tickets. I'll let you know how it goes!
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Old Jun 27th, 2005, 05:19 PM
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Hi, all,
I'm finally getting around to making this reservation. I went to the trenitalia website, which is very easy to use, but I just want to check back with you. Ira, you said that you recommend the ES* train. Well, the choices I have on July 31 are a ES* at 8:14 a.m. which goes through Bologna and is a total travel time of 3:32 , arriving at 11:46. Or, I can take a non-stop iC (?) that leaves at 9:33 and arrives at 12:26 with total travel time of 2:53. Which do you recommend? Obviously, we'd like to:
a) sleep in a bit later than the 8:14 train allows if possible (but not a priority)
b) have as little train time as possible
c) have the most comfortable and enjoyable train experience

Anyone who has a suggestion, I'm very grateful!
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Old Jun 27th, 2005, 10:57 PM
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If you book in advance you can also take advantage of the Trenitalia specials - 15 euros for IC and 29 euros for 1st class ES (click on the button that says other fares, discounts and promotions).
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Old Jun 28th, 2005, 06:09 AM
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i just travelled on the eurostar from rome to foligno. i also asked the eurostar club desk receptionist what would happen if i pre-bought tickets on internet and then my plane was late, making me miss my train?

she said "you have one hour to make a change.. and then you LOSE THE TICKET".

who is right?

p.s. the air conditioning seemed almost non-existent. common problem all over country. it is only put a few degrees cooler than outside for "health" reasons ( a friend said), and we found little relief in this horrible heat.

buying tickets there is not difficult if you know where you want to go.

for catching the train, you just need to know what will be on the heading of the train you will be taking if you don't happen to be going to the final destination (which is the only thing on the heading, of course).

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Old Jun 28th, 2005, 07:15 AM
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If you want to know what happens if you miss your ES train booked on the net, see this very informative post by GAC:

http://www.fodors.com/forums/threads...2&tid=34530906
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Old Jun 28th, 2005, 08:23 AM
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very interesting, clear and precise post.

i hope people connecting directly from airport to train will keep this good info in mind.

BTW; all out trains were delayed this past week.
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Old Jun 28th, 2005, 08:27 AM
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Hy Cy,

Both of your trains stop at Venice Mestre. You will have to take a commuter train into Venice San Lucia if you don't want the 10:39 ES*.

In this case, I suggest 1cl ticket on the IC.

You will have to get your paper ticket in Italy.

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Old Jul 25th, 2006, 10:28 PM
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I have read this thread as well as the Trenitalia website and still have some questions. First, if I do decide to book on the trenitalia website, I notice that I must chose from literally 25 different fair types and I don't easily find anywhere on the website that describes them. Obviously ones such as junior won't apply because we are adults, but perhaps some of the sconto ones might apply (although I don't see that there is anything "relax"-ing about any of this).

Has anyone written their thesis on understanding this rediculously complex fair system? If not, can anyone offer a laymens explanation for us so that we might have a clue as to how to choose a fair on trenitalia?
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