« Indecision 2009: Things are shaping up | Main | Indecision 2009: Hotel Orologio or Hotel Commercianti? »


I usually wouldn't mind buying all my train tickets in Italy, but for a few reasons I wanted to buy the ticket for my first train ride (Roma-Lecce) the day I arrive. I didn't want to be stuck without at ticket at the train I wanted, and by buying in advance, you can take advantage of the 20% cheaper Amica fare.

But from reading Slow Talk, I got a little worried - there were many threads were people lament not being able to buy tickets on the TrenItalia website with US credit cards. Two of the latest threads were these: Trenitalia booking tix b4 you go and TrenItalia online tickets. The last thread provides a link to a post on the Fodor travel forum: Trenitalia – How I Successfully Bought Train Tickets on the Web, where a poster by the name of Michael explains step by step how he was able to buy tickets - and it seemed extremely difficult!

So Sunday morning I armed myself with a US credit card, a Norwegian credit card, and determination. I registered, got a password on email (right away), and started the purchasing process. I found the train I wanted, clicked on it, selected my class and fare, entered my card information - and that was it. I was the holder of a second class reserved seat ticket from Rome to Lecce.

I don't know if I was extremely lucky but none of the bad stuff happened - and I did not use a CitiBank card, as recommended, or call my credit card company to tell them that I was going to buy from an Italian site, or any of the other things that were supposed to guarantee success. I did do the process in Italian but I can't imagine that makes a difference. Edited to add: I used the American credit card, a Visa card from a smaller bank.

I plan to buy tickets for another train ride as well, because it is on May 1 (Labor Day) and because I want to get the Amica fare. I am crossing my fingers that it will be as easy!!

Comments (7)


Hi E, which credit card did you use? The Norwegian or the US?

Jane, good question! I forgot to say that I used the American credit card. Regular visa card from a smaller bank.

I can just picture you "armed with your credit cards" :) Glad it worked. I bought a ticket a couple of years ago (first ticket after landing in Italy) with success. I also used the Italian language site. I wonder if that is the big difference? I didn't try the past couple of years after reading about all the problems. Maybe I should try again.

It would probably be good to buy a ticket for May 1st even if you did not get the Amica fare (but I am crossing my fingers for you that you do).

I can't wait to hear about your travels by train to Lecce. I have wanted to go there but have been a little discouraged by the train travel (being so long) and also not knowing if traveling in that area without a car would be workable.

ps...sent you an email about my hotel questions.


Chiocciola, you've inspired me! I had been discouraged by all the forum chat over how hard it is to use the TrenItalia website. But I think I'll try it myself.

I've been going back and forth over whether to try to buy a ticket for my first train trip after I arrive in Italy. (I'll be landing in Rome and want to immediately take the Eurostar up to Parma.)

Like you, I usually just buy tickets at the station as I need them. But a Friday afternoon in June might be busy on Eurostar, so I think I'll get this ticket in advance.

OK I totally jinxed myself! I tried buying more tickets today and now the payment doesn't go through! Grrr...

Well, I am glad your "first" experience was easy. I never even attempted buying tickets online because of what people say on the forums.
Hang in there though, one day it will work again for you, I am sure, just like it did the first time:)

Thanks for the encouragement, Candi!

This is a very back and forth tale - today I used my Norwegian visa card to buy more tickets. I got a great rate from Bolzano to Munich, only 19 dollars for a four hour train ride. However, the site looks different from this weekend and I can't seem to find the Amica fare anywhere! Very confusing, that's for sure.

Post a comment

(If you haven't left a comment here before, you may need to be approved by the site owner before your comment will appear. Until then, it won't appear on the entry. Thanks for waiting.)

This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on March 30, 2009 6:47 PM.

The previous post in this blog was Indecision 2009: Things are shaping up.

The next post in this blog is Indecision 2009: Hotel Orologio or Hotel Commercianti?.

Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

Powered by
Movable Type 3.33
© 2004 - 2010 Slow Travel