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Italy Train Travel - Italy Train Travel is Fun, Easy, and Convenient

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Italy is a country with a lot to offer a traveler. Ancient history, beautiful countryside, good food and some of the best wine in the world. There is art in every form, from the Ferrari museum in Maranello to the City of Venice, Italy is defined by style. Traveling by train is the best way to see more of Italy in a short period of time.

Italy train travel is less expensive than other countries in Europe consequently the seats are full, especially at peak times. There are ways around the crowd, so that a vacationer can enjoy the ride. To make the best use of the trains, plan in advance which cities you want to visit.

Local or Regionale trains are inexpensive, reliable and very busy. There are no reservations, just buy a ticket, validate it and get on. The ticket needs to be validated at a yellow box on the platform. Insert the end of the ticket to have it stamped with the time and date for the first time you used the ticket. Since these trains are used for commuters they can be very crowded. Just ask the conductor for an upgrade to first class where there is likely to be less people.

InterCity trains are fast and a reservation is needed. A Railpass holder will have to pay a small fee for a reservation. InterCity trains run the length of Italy with first and second class service. The seats in first class are slightly better and it is less crowded.

The Eurostar Italia is the premier train in Italy. Named Eurostar much before the train that crosses the English channel, seat reservation is mandatory. It is a fast train that travels between the major Italian cities.

Overnight Italy train travel is a good way to save time and hotel bills. For long distances it is better and more convenient than flying. From a reclining seat to a compartment with a private bath, overnight Italy train travel offers a large selection of accommodation. It is recommended to get a couchette, which is a padded bunk, or a sleeper, so you have the safety and privacy of a locked compartment. Excelsior sleepers are on a few routes only and are a deluxe sleeping car with a private shower and toilet. There are one to two bed compartments and a double bed compartment for honeymooners.

Buying a train ticket in Italy means you pay for a trip between two places. It does not specify the date or time of travel or reserve a seat. For most Italy train travel, this is enough. There are several ways to buy a point to point ticket. There are often long lines at a ticket agent’s window, so another option is an automatic ticket machine. It may also have long lines during peak times, however, most take credit cards and speak several languages. You can buy a ticket for each leg of your trip if you plan to change trains along the way. Tickets for the Regionale trains are often available at a tobacconists.

An Italy RailPass is enough to get on the train and find a seat, if it is not a train that requires reservation. If you need a reservation, just show the RailPass to the ticket agent and they will give you a reservation for a small fee. Before boarding the first train, be sure to have a ticket agent validate your pass. After that, just show it to the conductor.

Tickets can be purchased up to two months in advance. If your trip is well planned, you can have your tickets ready and avoid the crowds. They can also be purchased online.

There are two types of Italy train travel schedules, one large board overhead and paper schedules posted everyday. Arrivals are listed on the white paper and Departures are listed on the yellowish paper. There is other information on the paper schedules such as, whether the train has wheelchair access, allows bicycles or has any schedule changes on weekends or holidays. It will list all the stops along the way, and the final stop will be the name of the city on the overhead board. The overhead board shows the recent arrivals and departures and will tell you from which track your train will depart.

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