Video tutorial: (booking tickets for Italian trains online)

Video tutorial: (booking tickets for Italian trains online)

Trenitalia is the primary train operator in Italy. Trenitalia is owned by Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane, itself owned by the Italian Government.

Trenitalia offers national rail transport in Italy and international connections to Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Hungary, Slovenia, Spain, and Switzerland. The company operates both local (regional) and long-distance trains.

Regional trains travel within a region or between neighboring regions. Trains usually stop at all stations, thus connecting small centers to big cities. Regionale veloce (fast regional) are trains stopping at fewer stations.

Long-distance trains are of mainly of two types: the Frecce (arrows) and Intercity trains. The Frecce are generally considered high-end service and usually connect major cities. There are three types of Frecce:

Frecciarossa (maximum speed 360 km/h (220 mph)), high-speed trains and run mainly on high-speed lines;
Frecciargento (maximum speed 250 km/h (160 mph)), high-speed trains and run mainly on high-speed lines;
Frecciabianca (maximum speed 200 km/h (120 mph)), which run on traditional lines.

Intercity trains also serve medium-sized cities besides the big cities, thus are generally slower but are cheaper than the Frecce.

Night trains (Intercity night) operate mainly between north and south of Italy and between Italy and its neighbouring countries and are comparable to Intercity level.

Tickets can be booked at the station or online. The Trenitalia website ( permits the display of rail solutions as well as the acquisition of tickets. However, the value of getting tickets online varies based on the type of train.

There are two types of trains in the national system:

regional trains
‘premium’ trains

Regional trains
There are no reservations for regional trains, and for this reason, there is no price advantage to acquiring regional tickets in advance online.  Once bought, tickets for regional trains have to be validated at the station before departure.

“Validation” in this case means placing a date/time stamp on the ticket by inserting into a (usually) yellow box either in the station or along the track. This is done because regional tickets are not for a particular date or time but are valid for some months – the date/time stamp is to show that the ticket cannot be reused.

There are no discount schemes available for non-residents (of Italy) on regional trains.

On the other hand, ‘premium’ trains (i.e., long distance, high speed and other trains) are trains that require reservations: all seats must be reserved in advance. While a ticket with reservation will be sold to the buyer at the last minute at the station – if available – Trenitalia also has a variety of discount schemes wherein buyers who acquire tickets in advance may realize substantial savings. For this reason, buying tickets for ‘premium’ trains online in advance may be advantageous to the buyer.


Video from youtube

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