Traveling By Train

December 6, 2023

Wow ~ what a blessing this year has been! To be able to have a base in Rovigo, Italy and travel all over this beautiful country. The train system here makes it so easy to get from Point A to Point B. So much less stressful than flying or even driving. The two main train companies in Italy are Trenitalia and Italo. We used Trenitalia only because I got used to using their website! I like booking directly with the train companies so if you run into a problem (cancelled or delayed trains) you can go directly to the Trenitalia/Italo office at the train station for help (we always found someone who spoke English). Trainline and RailEurope are also good websites to purchase tickets.

Just login to and buy point to point tickets. There are passes available as well. Remember to use Italian names for towns (Firenze is Florence for example). The tickets are then sent to your email and since they are electronic tickets you don’t have to worry about validating them at the train station (which you have to do with paper tickets). You just show the tickets on your phone to the conductor when they come by. Some local trains require you to validate your electronic tickets online once you start your journey.

Making seat reservations is sometimes mandatory (usually on high speed trains – Frecciarossa) but I would do whenever the option was available. We would book 2nd class seats unless the 1st class seats were the same or close to the same price. We didn’t find the difference between the two classes to be that significant (the seats are generally a bit more comfortable and you usually get a snack). You can generally book up to 4 months in advance and I highly recommend doing this especially during high season (summer and early fall).

Train stations all have at least one café, bathrooms, Trenitalia/Italo offices and big monitors showing you the train arrivals (Arrivi) and departures (Partenze) including which platform your train will arrive on (5’ after the scheduled time means train is running 5 minutes late). I recommend giving yourself at least 20 minutes to make a connection – in Bologna (which has about 17 different platforms on different levels) I feel more comfortable with 30 minutes.

Please contact me with questions! Buon viaggio!

Ciao! -Alex

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