Better to purchase a rail pass or regular tickets for our trip to Italy?

my family is planning to travel to Italy this summer we are flying into Milan and planning to visit Milan, Rome, Venice and Florence over 12 days. We plan to use the trains as our main travel to each city. What would be our best option as far as the trains go, to get a pass or to pay each way. And from Milan which city should we go to next? Any help is appreciated!
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  • Jeff (Official Rep) May 04, 2017 20:14
    Hi Donna,

    What to purchase for your travels would depend on the specifics of the itinerary itself. Where you head after Milan would be entirely up to you. Venice might make more sense than the other cities you mentioned, but it depends how you want to map out your trip.

    Calculating the Option of Purchasing a Eurail Italy Pass & Reservations

    You can check costs for the Eurail Italy Pass by clicking here: http://www.raileurope.com/rail-tickets-passes/eurail-italy-pass/index.html.

    A rail pass covers the ticket costs on trains (day trains and night trains) between different cities in the country or countries included on the pass. When applicable, reservations are a supplementary cost to a rail pass, just as they would be factored into the cost of individual point-to-point tickets. Therefore, a rail pass still often works out to be the most economical option for travelers taking multiple trains while in Europe that cover more substantial distances.

    When calculating the grand total for the option of traveling with the Eurail Italy Pass, you would want to be sure to factor in any reservation costs as well. You would check reservation costs and purchase reservations by clicking the 'Seat Reservations' tab on our homepage, entering the route, and indicating the type of rail pass with which you'll be traveling (i.e. the 'Eurail Italy Pass'). Generally, reservable trains in Italy can be booked within 90 to 120 days of an intended departure.

    In Italy, the trains that require seat reservations in addition to a rail pass are Frecciarossa, Frecciargento, Frecciabianca, and InterCity (IC). Most major cities in Italy are connected almost exclusively by these trains, so it is likely that reservations would be required for many of your trips there.

    Reservations are not accepted on any Regionale or Regionale Veloce trains in Italy, so there would be no reservation costs to factor in for these, as the Eurail Italy Pass is all you would need to board.

    Once you've checked the reservation costs for all your reservable trains, you would add the total amount to the cost of the Eurail Italy Pass.

    It is also important to note that the trains called 'Italo' are not covered by rail passes. Italo is a type of high-speed train that operates along certain major routes in Italy. Italo trains are privately owned and do not accept any rail passes. With the rail pass, you would need to take trains operated by the national rail network of Italy (Trenitalia) to be covered. The Trenitalia network includes Frecciarossa, Frecciargento, Frecciabianca, InterCity (IC), Regionale, and Regionale Veloce. Fortunately, there are Trenitalia trains that operate along all of the routes that Italo operates, so you'll always have an option.

    If you wish to take an 'Italo' train, you would need to purchase regular tickets for it.

    Purchasing Regular Point-to-Point Tickets

    You would purchase tickets by doing a search for a route under 'Find Train Tickets' on our homepage, www.raileurope.com. When purchasing regular tickets, you would have to be sure the 'No' option is checked where it asks you 'Are you traveling with a rail pass?'. Generally, trains in Italy can be booked within 90 to 120 days of an intended departure date.

    By purchasing regular tickets, it frees you up to take Italo trains.
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