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Eurail pass or point to point tickets

Hello,

My first time travel in Europe by train, so please pardon me if I am asking naive questions. I will be traveling in EU with my family (3 adults and 1 child)

Here is my travel plan:
Land in Geneva on 16th June, (tour of Glacier 3000)
Geneva to Monterosso on 18th June by Train *** (7:39am EC47 direct train to Milan and reach Monterosso by 5pm)
Monterosso to Rome on 19th June by Train *** (typical sights at Rome)
Rome to Venice on 22nd June by Train *** (typical sights at Venice)
Fly from Venice to Berlin
Berlin to Prague on 26th June by Train ***
Prague to Vienna on 27th by Train ***

*** These are the travel days (5). My options as I understand today are
1. Book tickets for individual trains (I calculate ~1200$, includes seat reservation)
2. Buy Eurail pass (for 5 days its 868$) + about 207$ for reservation = 1075$ total
3. Buy Trenitalia pass (450$ for 3 trips) + 200$ tickets for Berlin-Prague-Vienna = 650 total

My observations are
1. there is not much difference between "point to point tickets" and "Eurail global pass". Unless I miss something.
2. Trenitalia pass seems to be best option however It is not clear to me if Trenitalia pass has any limitations that does not allow me to travel on certain trains for example EC47 between Geneva and Milan.

I will appreciate any insights on which pass/approach is best for me and my family. If I missed another option please do let me know.

Thank you very much in advance.

Edit: Monterosso arrival by 5pm

Posted by
20309 posts

Geneva to Monterosso on 18th June by Train *** (7:39am EC47 direct train to Milan and reach Monterosso by Noon)

An initial thought, since EC 47 arrives at Milano Porta Garibaldi station at 11:38 am, no way you can get to Monterosso by noon. Trenitalia is showing you have to transfer to Milano Centrale station with a 2:05 pm departure, arriving at Monterosso at 5:05 pm.

Posted by
2345 posts

The Trenitalia pass will not cover you in Switzerland. It will cover only from the first Italian station across the Swiss border.

Posted by
5258 posts

Please refer to this invaluable website before buying any type or train pass for Europe: seat61.com

I will only address your train travel questions about Italy since I’ve not traveled to the other countries on your list of destinations.

When it comes to traveling within Italy, you’re better off buying point to point tickets.

Since your trip is upcoming in the next few days, you most likely won’t find any discounted train tickets at this time, but the prices are very reasonable nonetheless.

You may book your train ticket on the following websites:

Do compare prices in the above websites.
There appear to be some discounted prices on the Italo website for your Roma Termini (Rome) to Venezia S.Lucia (Venice) journey.

Also check for special offers on the Trenitalia website and on Italotreno.it
Your child may travel for free (with purchase of discounted adult tickets) depending on their age.

Enjoy your trip!

Posted by
2 posts

Thank you @sam I edited my original post to show 5pm.

Thank you @travel4fun, I did not know that Trenitalia pass was not accepted from Geneva to Italy border, that changes the number as follows:

  1. Buy Trenitalia pass (450$ for 3 trips) + +284 for Geneva to Domodossola + 200$ tickets for Berlin-Prague-Vienna = 934$ total

Option #3 still comes out slightly cheaper than Eurail global pass or buying point to point.

A followup question, if I use Trenitalia pass, do I need to pay "additional amount" to reserve a seat? between Monterosso - Rome - Venice legs? Or does the pass covers for seat reservation?

Posted by
20309 posts

Trenitalia Pass covers seat reservations, but you have to remember to make them.

You will have, at most, 24 hours in Monterosso. Seems to me its a lot of logistics for the family for such a short visit. You could just as easily get a train from Milan to Rome and give you more time there or Venice.

Posted by
149 posts

We had Eurail passes last year. We paid reservation fees for Italian trains (4 days/ rides in Italy) and could only make reservations in the train stations. Unless something has changed since May/June 2022, I would not recommend a Eurail pass for use in Italy.

Posted by
1913 posts

Trenitalia Pass only covers trains operated by Trenitalia. That of course excludes the Geneva - Milano train, as that is operated by SBB till Domodossola. Eurail Pass of course covers it.

For a last minute trip a pass can make sense. I have done this myself for trips to Germany for example, as a 5 day Interrail Pass costs less than a standard return ticket Interlaken - Berlin, as an example.

With the pass reservations are extra, but you can easily do this at the station. You could even do all your reservations already at the station in Geneva where they will be happy to help you.

I find the order of cities a bit odd though. I would have done Venice - Vienna - Prague - Berlin in that order, and done all by train.