Taking the airplane is still the easiest and most convenient way to get to and within Italy. But is it the only way? Scanning your map will unveil Italy’s share of ports, and several land and sea routes.
Well, if you really have a thing for flying, flights within Italian cities are abundant. Rome, Milan, Pisa, Naples, Turin, Bologna, and Venice all serve as major hubs. However, check the map again. Even if several flights are being offered cheap, some of these flights do not really get you anywhere nearer your actual destination. So save yourself all the trouble and consider other ways to travel to Italy.
Italy has a very extensive train system. The rail service is called Ferrovie dello Stato (FS). It operates many different types of trains, offering several ways to travel in Italy. But the fastest and the type which gives the most comfortable service is the Eurostar or Pendolino. This expensive train service demands seat reservations unlike the less costly type, the Intercity. Railroad travel may be so much more expensive than an airplane ride, however, it is definitely a more attractive option. This train ride experience is very fulfilling to those who are interested to see a lot of scenery. They probably do not go everywhere you would want to go but they cover several routes and buses are always available to take you to the spots not reached by the trains. And if bus rides do not appeal to you, you can always head out to the main square of the town where a coach is always ready to take you places.
Driving is one of the many popular ways to travel in Italy and is for those with brave and adventurous spirits. Although however fearless you might be, it is best to book a vehicle before you leave for Italy unless you welcome the possibility of getting a car that can’t carry even half of your luggage. Make sure you have been briefed about the insurance and returns policy before you set off with the car. If you’re so used to fidgeting with your mobile phone while driving, remember that Italy only allows you to use it if it has a speaker device – so text messages are out of the question. Seat belts are considered functional and are therefore compulsory. And of course, being brave means getting ready to drive on the right!
Driving too close may be part of the Italians’ romantic qualities. That, or they believe they have nine lives. So if you find a space in front of you, close the gap – unless you want someone else to suddenly fill it instead.
So find other safer ways to travel in Italy. Backpacking is an alternative, however crude it may sound to some people. Or you may listen to Brenda Russell’s “Get Here” song and get ideas from there. But is “climb a tree and swing rope to rope” any safer than driving around town?