We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Trains in Italy, Please help!

Level Contributor
125 posts
3 reviews
Save Topic
Trains in Italy, Please help!

For the past few weeks I've been building our itinerary in Europe. We have several "transfer' days in Italy in early July and I'd plan what we want to see in Genoa, Milano, Pisa, estimate time needed, and then would find train times that'd work best. I put these train times in my spreadsheet and often would print the train schedule from the Trenitalia website. So I'm absolutely sure I didn't imagine the dates and times that I chose. :)

Last night I went to check some connections on Trenitalia and see that many of the trains are simply not there now.

E.g. my printouts show the following from Genoa to Milan 8:18-9:55 or 9:18-10:55. Now Trenitalia on that date shows nothing between 7:21-9:00 and 11:23-12:50. To add more confusion RailEurope shows a train at 7:50-9:40.

Even more confusing is Milan to Monterosso part. I remember first finding connections on Trenitalia that would have 3 minutes in Genoa, so I called Trenitalia few weeks ago to ask if there is enough time and was advised that it was a direct train with a 3 min stop in Genoa but no train change. Now I don't see any trains from Milan to Monterosso, moreover - nothing from Genoa to Monterosso. So I called Trenitalia. Response: there are no such trains. The only way to get from Milan to Monterosso is to go to Parma, then to La Spezia, then to Monterosso. :o

There's nothing showing between Cinque Terre Villages. That's impossible, right?

Trains from La Spezia to Pisa and Pisa-Florence are now significantly fewer.

I'd think there might be a glitch on the website, but Trenitalia reps are standing by this new status.

Has anyone encountered the same?

Sorry, I'm not sure if this is a question for this forum, or for Italy?

Or rather for a psychiatric one? :) - I feel like I woke up and my neighbors house is not there, and no one remembers it or them. But I have photos of them and their house. :) Like I have printouts for those train times for my dates.

11 replies to this topic
Quainton, United...
Destination Expert
for Train Travel
Level Contributor
9,288 posts
4 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Trains in Italy, Please help!

Remember there's a timetable change on 9 June and not all regional trains are loaded yet.

Remember also that regional trains are like bread and milk - you walk in and buy them when you want them, not 6 months ahead!

Check times for next week and assume times will be similar or indeed the same beyond 9 June.

This is not a problem...

Level Contributor
125 posts
3 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Trains in Italy, Please help!

Many thanks Man_in_Seat_61. Btw, I've been reading your website, very helpful!

There's a good discussion and advice on this topic in Italy forum: https:/…91807201.

My main concern is, can all bread and milk (seats) be sold out? What is the likelihood of it in early July? Will I then be hungry on the train station until next train/day, or is there a way to get crumbs, i.e. can travel standing?

Wengen, Switzerland
Destination Expert
for Switzerland
Level Contributor
8,594 posts
Save Reply
3. Re: Trains in Italy, Please help!

Regional trains are mass transit. Just like tickets for the subway never sell out they do not “sell out” either.

Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
11,430 posts
32 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Trains in Italy, Please help!

" My main concern is, can all bread and milk (seats) be sold out? "

They won't be "sold out", but you have to be prepared at the possibility of having to stand all the way, if during busy times (we did, during our recent trip on a Regionale from Bolzano to Trento)

Brussels, Belgium
Level Contributor
37,141 posts
3 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Trains in Italy, Please help!

R (including RV) trains cannot be reserved, and even if you buy a ticket online, when you know when its 4-hour validity begins, you aren't committed to a specific departure - and neither is anyone else! Therefore, Italian Railways doesn't know how many people will be taking each train, therefore, they cannot sell out. You can ALWAYS take any R train you want on the route in question, within the validity of your ticket. Whether or not you can find a seat is another matter, if you can't you just have to stand.

Indeed it's impossible that there won't be trains between the CT villages. It used to be that you couldn't find R trains in the timetable more than a week before anyway... You'll probably find that the reality your printouts correspond to comes back into focus, give or take a minute or so.

Level Contributor
125 posts
3 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Trains in Italy, Please help!

Thanks for the reassurance, folks.

It looks like all trains that can work for me are intercity. I don't see any regional running directly from Milan to Monterosso. Are they likely to be sold out in early June? On a Monday? Some other routes occasionally show Thello and Frecciabianca - these are high-speed too, not regional either if I understand correctly. Any worries of them selling out?

Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
11,430 posts
32 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Trains in Italy, Please help!

The Intercity trains are bookable now, and they are subject to discounts, so it is worthwhile to book if you know your schedule. I don't see any Thellos running on that route, but Thello is a private train which is also subject to reservation and discounts. Where exactly do you want to go ?

Thello goes from Milan to Ventimiglia (French border) then onwards to Nice

https://www.thello.com/en/

Level Contributor
125 posts
3 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Trains in Italy, Please help!

@hadiwi56a, e.g. Genoa-Milan Thello #140. It's not my first choice anyway, I'm just trying to estimate which trains are more likely to sell out, or be very late.

Level Contributor
125 posts
3 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Trains in Italy, Please help!

Here are the segments that are critical:

Genoa-Milan Intercity (only one or two can work for me)

Milan-Monterosso Intercity (same)

Florence-Rimini (via Bologna) Frecciarossa+Frecciabianca, only one is good.

Which one do you all advise to buy in advance?

Thank you!

I already got tickets Rimini-Veniceon on Frecciabianca, as it's the only direct train and time works well. I assume time won't change? :)

Edited: 12 May 2018, 06:43
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
11,430 posts
32 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Trains in Italy, Please help!

Well, certainly Thello is expanding...

I would buy all of them if your schedule is already set (that's how I travel anyway, got all my tickets done for October trip)

The 8:45 and 10:45 trains from Florence are faster, using Frecciarossa 1000

Edited: 12 May 2018, 07:30
Reply to: Trains in Italy, Please help!
Get notified by e-mail when a reply is posted