An easy way to travel comfortably around Italy is to use one of the most convenient and affordable means of transport: transport in Italy briefly.The basic role in the external relations of the country belongs to water transport. For tourism other kinds of transport is developed in Italy: road transport, railway and air transport.
Transport in the cities of Italy
International tourism is a leading industry in the Italian economy. The list of the largest tourist centers of the country includes Rome, Pisa, Florence, Milan, Siena, Pompeii, and Naples, as well as San Remo – resorts of the Italian Riviera, the Adriatic, Capri, Como – mountain resorts of the Alps and Montecatini thermal springs.
For tourists, it is important to move around the country quickly and conveniently to see a maximum of sights during a short vacation. In Italy, public transport is well developed, almost all resorts and cities are connected by rail. Rome is the capital of Italy and Milan is the commercial center of the country. They represent the main transport hubs in Italy and all of Europe.
Public Transport in Italy
Shuttle buses run between the settlements in Italy; between the largest cities, you can travel by plane. It is faster and more convenient to travel by a high-speed train. In Rome, Milan, Turin, Genoa, Catania, Baria, Palermo, and Naples there is a subway.
You can order a taxi by phone or find a taxi in special parking lots. There are parking lots near the entrances to the subway and at railway stations. You cannot catch a taxi in the street.
The country has a dense road network. Therefore, road transport takes the first place in the transportation of goods and passengers in the country. In Italy, the level of motorization is one of the highest in the world – 550 cars per 1000 inhabitants.
Sea and river transport is well developed in Italy. Venice with the Grand Canal, along which run water trams, public vessels vaporetto and gondolas is amazing. Ferries that go to the Italian islands of Sicily, Sardinia, Ischia, and Capri are popular.
Sea transport serves 70% of the Italian foreign trade. The largest ports of the country are Taranto, Genoa, Trieste, Venice, and oil Augusta.
For the convenience of tourists, there are Italy Rail-card and Italy Flexi-card, which are used for several days and are suitable for travel by public transport. They are not associated with the number of trips; the price of one ticket depends on the distance between the settlements. The schedule of public transport is on the official sites of Italy.
Water transport in Italy briefly: features
90% of Italy’s borders are washed by the seas. Most of the territory is coastal areas. The navy is important in the transportation of passengers and goods within the country because it is the largest international carrier and is of great significance for Italy’s foreign trade.
In terms of tonnage, the Italian fleet takes 10th place – it has 1,500 vessels.
Genoa is the largest port in the country and the most important port in the entire Mediterranean area. International transportation of goods and passengers from the north-west of Italy and Switzerland is carried out through it.
The second most important port is the port of Trieste. This is one of the most important oil ports in Europe through which Northeast Italy has connections with other countries of the Mediterranean, in East Asia, in East Africa, and in the East.
The river transport is developed the best in Venice. Gondolas, water taxis and trams run on the Grand Canal. In other cities of the country, there are no large rivers, so this type of transport is less developed.
Railway transport in Italy briefly
Milan is the main railway center of Italy. The largest number of railway junctions is concentrated in it. Further on the list are Rome, Florence, Bari, Genoa, Venice, Bologna, Palermo, Turin, and Naples.
There are high-speed highways between the largest cities in the country. The total length of railways in Italy is 31 thousand km, and 11 thousand of them are electrified. The length of the narrow gauge tracks is 1,323 km. Such roads are now used for tourism purposes.
The trains are comfortable and modern. Inside the country and beyond there are:
- high-speed espresso trains that move without stops;
- super-fast rapide;
- local trains locale;
- R suburban regionale – with a sitting carriage and numerous stops;
- direct diretto;
- IC Intercity – with compartments for 4 to 6 passengers;
- ES intercity Eurostar – with better service and a common salon;
- EC intercity Eurocity for travel between cities of Europe and Italy with a compartment for 4 to 6 passengers.
The trains have sitting and sleeping seats. Ticket prices for the first and the second classes differ by half.
Every year the government invests money in the development of railways. Many lines have been modernized, a highway connecting Rome, Florence, Bologna, and Milan has been built. Trains travel at speeds up to 260 km per hour.
On the railway, as in other public transport, there is a system of discounts and concessionary fares. If travelers intend to travel around the country or are set for a long trip, it is beneficial to purchase Italy Flexi-card or Italy Rail-card for 4 -12 or 30 days. Cards are purchased at travel agencies or stations.
Railway lines have an inter-radial direction along the western and eastern coasts of the Apennine Peninsula. In the north, the national road network is larger; in the south, motor vehicles are developed. Parallel to the main railway line is the “The Motorway of the Sun”.
Road Transport in Italy Briefly
Cars in Italy are very popular. In total, the local auto park has more than 20 million vehicles, and 18 million of them are cars. There is right-hand traffic – the steering wheel is located on the left. 80% of cargo and 90% of passengers are transported by cars.
The total length of roads in the country with a hard surface is 655 thousand km., of which 293 thousand km are in Northern Italy. Roads, both in cities and in villages, are characterized by high-quality pavement.
In Italy ¼ of all European freeways is concentrated – 6 thousand km including the very first motorway in the world Varese – Milan, built in 1924.
Altogether, 5 international motorways pass through Italy:
- London-Lausanne-Milan- Brindisi;
- Rome-Berlin-Oslo- Stjordan;
The Motorway of the Sun is the country’s main transport artery that runs across the country. It begins in Turin, runs through Florence, Milan, Naples, Reggio-di-Calabria, and Rome. This highway and other highways are parallel to railway tracks. They are called double-digit: “A + quantity” – these are the lines of European corridors.
Other state roads connect the main settlements with Rome, Milan, Florence, and the major cities of neighboring states. The bus network is well developed, there is a subway, you can take a taxi and rent a car.
Public transport bus network
If we talk about transport in Italy it is important to mention the buses, you can use to get to practically anywhere in the country. This is the main municipal transport of the country.
You can enter the bus only through the back door with the inscription “Salita”. You need to exit through the front door with the words “Us-cita”. Once inside, the passenger is obligated to validate the ticket in the orange or yellow ticket punch, which is located at the entrance.
Bus tickets are not for sale on the bus. You can buy tickets in advance at an automatic checkout counter, at a tobacco kiosk with a black and yellow sign and the letter “T”, as well as in some bars and in the subway. These tickets are valid for all types of public transport within the settlement, including the railway.
One trip from the moment the ticket was punched during 75 minutes allows the passenger to make any transfers within different public transport. For example, with one ticket a traveler takes 15 minutes by bus and 50 minutes by train. 10 minutes are left in reserve.
In Italy, you cannot catch a taxi on the road or in the street. In the cities, there are special parking lots in squares, near the subway, train stations and other public places where there is a large number of people.
The most convenient way for tourists to call for a taxi from the hotel, a bar or a restaurant by phone. Even if the traveler does not know Italian – the word taxi is international, it is understood everywhere. Fares are calculated on the counter.
For baggage, after 22:00, on weekends and holidays, an additional fee is charged to the total amount. You can leave a tip. Each official taxi has signs in English with information for tourists about extra charges.
Most taxi drivers do not know English, so you can write the address on the paper in advance.
The schedule of the Italian subway depends on the day of the week and holidays. From Monday to Thursday, it opens at 5:30 in the morning and is open until 23:30. On Friday and Saturday, it opens at 5:30 and closes at 01:30. On Sundays and holidays, it is open from 8:00 to 23:30.
Tickets are sold in vending machines. Travel cards are inserted into the slot on the right in the turnstiles where passengers pass. The machine punches the ticket, writes the date, hour of entry and returns it to the passenger. The ticket is valid for 1.5 hours and must be kept until the end of the trip.
There are two branches in the subway in Rome:
- 18 km line A connects the center from Ottaviano near Vatican to the outskirts of the city in the east and passes through Cinecitta.
- Line B goes to the urban outskirts to the north and the modern industrial complex EUR in the south.
At Termini lines A and B intersect.
The subway of Milan is considered to be the best in Italy. It consists, like the Roman one, of two branches that pass through the city and the outskirts. For tourists, the first subway line is of great interest. It passes through Piazza del Maria della Grazie to the south next to Stazione Centrale.
Just like residents, tourists from different countries can rent cars. To do this, you need:
- cash pawn or credit card;
- driving license of international standard;
- driver aged 21 years and older.
When renting a car, you need to make sure that it is in good working condition, there is insurance in case of theft or accident. You can take full insurance, which includes payment of any dents and scratches if there are such during the trip.
When a tourist rents a car with a full tank, the car is to be returned with a full tank. You can agree about an individual place to return the vehicle at an additional cost.
Air transport in Italy briefly
In subway, you can use such a ticket once. You can also buy an oyster card for a week, a month or a year. BIG ticket for a day costs 3 – 5 euros, CIS ticket for a week costs 12 euros.
All major cities in Italy have airports and they are connected by air lines. Plane tickets are more expensive than the bus and the railway tickets, but when travelling long distances, it is better to use the services of airlines. The most famous Italian airline is Alitalia; it is also one of the largest in Europe.
There are 230 official airports in Italy, 51 of which have the IATA Airport Code – international significance:
- In Rome – ‘’Leonardo da Vinci’’.
- In Milan – ‘’Malpensa’’, ‘’Enrico Forlanini’’.
- In Venice – ‘’Marco Polo’’.
- In Florence – ‘’Amerigo Vespucci’’.
- In Genoa – “Christopher Columbus”.
- In Palermo – ‘’Falcone and Borselino’’.
- In Trieste – “Ronchi di Legionari”.
- In the Bologna – “Guglielmo Marconi”.
- In Naples – “Hugo Niuta”.
- In Turin – “Sandro Pertini”.
To travel around Italy as comfortable as possible and without bad surprises, you need to remember some useful information.
Italy is a developed, modern European country with its characteristics.
Types of roads. In this European country, roads are divided into three types: autostrade – motorways, superstrade – superstradas and sta-tale – state roads.
Speed Limit. In the city, you can drive at a maximum speed of 50 km/h. On state roads, the limit is 90 km/h. On superstradas, 100 km/h is permissible, and on motorways – 130 km/h. High-speed mode in the country is automatically controlled by AUTOVELOX devices. They record the violation and photograph the cars of the violators.
Fines. The driver who violated the rules gets a fine, which he will have to pay. As a rule, fine payment is on the spot according to all the rules in accordance with the law. You will have to pay 50 euros if you drive at the red traffic light. For wrongly parking, a fine can be up to 70 euros. For speeding the offender will pay up to 131 euros.
According to the legislation of the country, a driver who drives a car drunk is liable for high fines and even imprisonment. 0.8 ppm is the maximum allowable level of alcohol in the blood. That is a beer or a glass of dry wine.
Police. The Italian traffic police are incorruptible and principled. For the slightest hint of a bribe to the traffic inspector, the driver may be arrested. It is useless to argue – the penalty might increase.
Fare. To drive on major modern highways, motorists pay a certain amount of money. Each freeway is marked with a white letter “A” with its number and green signs.
At the entrance drivers receive a ticket that must be paid. Alternatively, you can purchase Viacard or Telepass cards at service stations, at payment points and use them to pay.
Petrol stations. Within the city, stations operate on schedule. Country petrol stations are open 24/7. In large cities, there are mini-petrol stations with 1-2 machines installed on the patch. The driver does everything by himself, payment is by credit card. There are no workers at such petrol stations.
“Autogrill-li” – Autogrill are places lined up along freeways with petrol stations, cafes, ATMs, supermarkets, toilets, and other infrastructure necessary for travelers.
Parking. At certain hours in cities, the streets of the historic center parking are closed. Locals often park in any free place, but tourists are not recommended to do so. Rental cars and license plates from other countries attract the attention of the police, and drivers of such vehicles may be fined.
You cannot park in parking lots that are limited by the yellow line. Parking lots with a blue line are paid, with white – paid through the counter or free. At hotels, you can usually leave a car for a while, but each institution has individual rules.
Automobile, water, rail and air transport in Italy is developed at a high level. It is convenient to move between cities and within regions. Fans of land travel can travel around the country by bus or train. Those who want to learn more useful information in a short time buy plane tickets.
In Italy, water transport is well developed – you can have a ride on ferries, river trams and the famous Venetian gondolas. Tourists who come for a comfortable holiday rent a car and enjoy their vacation in any company.