Public transport in Italy

Italy has a very strange system in place. There are local buses, regional buses, cross region buses, city buses. In fact so many different types. Buses can be hard to work out. Google Maps will show many bus times, but not all. Trenitalia also shows its own buses that it operates on train routes. Both are in English so easy to use. As for regional buses and city buses, you just have to search using a search engine, there is no central place to find bus times in Italy.

Trains there is a few train operators, regional trains are unreliable, and I mean very unreliable. They may be on time the whole journey they may be late by hours. Early morning ones tend to be the most reliable, obviously as they are starting the journey. Italian train stations are multi lingual, all ticket machines are in a few languages, and all signage in stations is in English as well as Italian. The Trenitalia app which is the official train company in Italy is in English as well, so booking trains is a breeze in Italy via the app or at the train station. For those coming from the UK that are used to using the trainline, well the trainline website and app works in Italy.

There are a few coach companies around that cover most of Italy.

The Trenitalia app can be downloaded here

  • Self check-in: communicate your presence on board Frecce and Intercity train services with just one tap, allowing you to skip ticket inspection.
  • Your ticket is always just a tap away: view your upcoming journey directly from the ‘Home Page’, and, if you have an iPhone, on your Apple Watch, including all the travel information you need: your coach and seat numbers, as well as real-time train status updates.
  • Pay using your mobile phone credit: this convenient, new payment method is now available to purchase tickets, for fare prices up to €13.45, using your mobile phone credit. 
  • You can use either your CartaFRECCIA points or bonuses, credits or gift cards and telephone credit to make purchases.
  • Always stay up to date on the status of your train: check your train’s status even from the search function and turn on Smart Caring notifications to receive real-time information on your train’s progress.
  • Season tickets and carnets: you can now purchase season tickets and carnets for Frecce, Intercity and Regional train services.
  • Check available seats on regional trains: Check available seats and book your journey on board regional trains.
  • Quickly purchase your favourite journey again in the future: save your favourite journeys by tapping on the heart icon and you will be able to purchase them again the next time in just one tap from the ‘Home Page’.
  • Are you travelling on business? Log in using your user details and discover all the features and services dedicated to the Trenitalia for Business world.
  • Book an appointment at the ticket office: with ufirst, you can choose the ticket office closest to you and book an appointment to ‘skip the queue’.

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