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New connections to summer tourist destinations, art cities and Italian villages. More intermodal and digital services to benefit travellers, allowing them to get around more comfortably and sustainably, partly thanks to new combined solutions with train, bus, ship or plane.

The 2024 Summer Experience organised by the Passenger Business Unit Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane – consisting of Trenitalia (lead company), Busitalia, Ferrovie del Sud Est and FS Treni Turistici Italiani – kicks off on 9 June and is enhanced with latest-generation trains also purchased with NRRP funds directly allocated to Trenitalia.

“Trains play a key role in people’s lives, not only as a means of transport, but also as a place and space where a common culture of health, inclusion and sustainability can be consolidated and spread. Trenitalia’s Summer Experience allows us to offer a unique model of excellence thanks to thousands of trains and buses that transport millions of people every day.” said Stefano Cuzzilla, Chairman of Trenitalia.

In his speech Luigi Corradi, CEO and General Manager of Trenitalia, took stock of the past year and looked ahead to the future: “We have closed an extraordinary year, which has resulted in a significant increase in customer satisfaction with regard to service quality and reliability. The numerous initiatives undertaken over the past three years have improved customer satisfaction results, and our entire range of services is marked by a focus on sustainability, which translates into investments in a younger fleet, intermodal services that allow you to leave your car at home, and technological innovations that will guarantee an even more complete and higher-quality travel experience. We are enthusiastically looking ahead to the summer. Forecasts for 2024 point to further growth, sustained by domestic demand for all business divisions and Hub companies, especially for the tourism segment, with an important boost from international connections.”

New connections and offers to reach over 700 destinations

Over 700 summer destinations can be reached every day. Specifically, the summer service includes more than 270 Frecce trains daily, with over 130,000 seats on offer. Intercity and Intercity Notte will travel to more than 230 cities (70 summer destinations). The 6,000 Regionale trains per day will reach more than 1,700 destinations, 500 of which are tourist destinations.

FS Treni Turistici Italiani’s renewed summer offer will be enriched with the Espresso Versilia and the Espresso Riviera. Also confirmed is the summer route of the Espresso Cadore, which will travel between Rome and Cortina D’Ampezzo.

The range of services of the Passenger Business Unit is also complemented by the more than 9,700 daily Busitalia connections in the Veneto, Umbria and Campania regions and the approximately 1,000 train and bus services of Ferrovie del Sud Est in Apulia. The range of intermodal services is also growing, with connections to 19 ports and 23 airports, plus 12 FRECCIALink routes connected with Frecce trains, and 159 links to tourist destinations connected with Regionale trains.

For connections abroad, thanks to Eurocity trains, operated in cooperation with the Swiss railways, Italian and international travellers can use connections from Milan or Venice to destinations such as Zurich, Lugano and Bellinzona. Thanks to the Euronight connections, operated in cooperation with the Austrian railways, Germany and Austria will be connected with La Spezia, Genoa and Milan.

Moreover, CEO Luigi Corradi has announced the reopening by the end of the year of the Frecciarossa connection between Milan and Paris, following its forced closure caused by a landslide in France.

FS Treni Turistici Italiani: all timetables for new routes

FS Treni Turistici Italiani will be enhanced with the Espresso Versilia and the Espresso Riviera.

The first will leave from Milan, passing through Cinque Terre, before continuing its journey to Pisa and the beaches of Versilia. The second, from Milan to Ventimiglia, will cross the beaches of the Riviera dei Fiori until it touches the Côte d’Azur. Also confirmed for summer 2024 is the Espresso Cadore, already operating during the winter season, which will travel between Rome and Cortina.

This route will return to operation on 25 June, and will continue until 31 August. Outward journeys will be on Tuesdays, departing from Roma Termini at 8:58 p.m. and arriving in Cortina at 10:13 a.m., and on Fridays, also departing at 8:58 p.m. and arriving at 9:28 a.m. Return journeys will be on Wednesdays, with departure from Cortina at 7 p.m. and arrival in Rome at 6:42 a.m., and on Saturdays, also departing at 7 p.m. and arriving at 8:38 a.m. The only exception is Saturday, 6 July, where the arrival will be at 6:42 a.m.

The intermediate stops of the Espresso Cadore night train are at Ponte nelle Alpi-Polpet, Longarone-Zoldo and Calalzo-Pieve di Cadore-Cortina. From here, the journey continues by bus, stopping in Borca di Cadore and arriving at the former railway station of Cortina d’Ampezzo.

The Espresso Versilia will travel on Tuesdays and Thursdays, from 6 August to 26 September, with departure from Milano Centrale at 10:35 a.m. and arrival at Livorno Centrale at 3:42 p.m. for the outward journey, while for the return journey, departure from Livorno is scheduled for 4:50 p.m. and arrival in Milan at 11:05 p.m. Intermediate stops are planned in Pavia, Genoa Piazza Principe, Santa Margherita Ligure – Portofino, Monterosso, Corniglia, Riomaggiore, Massa Centro, Forte dei Marmi, Camaiore Lido – Capezzano, Viareggio, Torre del Lago – Puccini and Pisa.

Finally, the Espresso Riviera will travel on Saturdays and Sundays, from 3 August to 29 September, departing from Milano Centrale and arriving in Ventimiglia. The outward train will leave at 7:35 a.m. from Milan, arriving in Ventimiglia at 12:20 p.m. or, on some dates, at 11:35 a.m. Specifically, early arrival is scheduled for Saturday 3 August and weekends from 14 to 29 September. The return train will leave Ventimiglia at 18:55, arriving at Milano Centrale 23:40. Seven intermediate stages are planned: Pavia, Varazze, Savona, Albenga, Alassio, Sanremo and Bordighera.

Travellers and sustainability: the record numbers of the Passenger Business Unit

In the first four months of the year, 268 million people travelled on board the FS Group’s Passenger Business Unit vehicles (+5% compared to 2023), 191 million of them in Italy. Over the same period, Trenitalia transported 150 million travellers who, by choosing to travel by train, saved €700 million in environmental and social costs and avoided the emission of 900,000 tonnes of CO2 into the air compared to using a car. To compare the energy consumption and CO2 emissions of a train journey with the same journey by other means of transport, Trenitalia has recently integrated ‘Ecopassenger’ into its sales systems.

2023 was a record year for Trenitalia: over 500 million travellers, up 30 million from the previous year (+18%).

The very positive net result compared to 2022 was driven by an increase in traffic revenues, which affected all businesses, but particularly the High Speed segment.

Innovation: fleet investment and digital development

Innovation and a focus on travellers are the drivers behind the investments of Trenitalia and the Passenger Business Unit. Investment expenditure in 2023 exceeded €1.8 billion, of which €1.1 billion was earmarked for fleet renewal. Increasingly modern and technologically advanced trains will run in the coming years. The development of digital initiatives has also contributed to the increase in the number of passengers buying online: 47% of tickets are sold on the website and app.

In the coming weeks, the ‘Tap&Tap’ payment system, which allows regional tickets to be purchased using a contactless payment card directly at the validators in the station, will also be extended on the Venice-Bassano del Grappa; Turin-Caselle and Cagliari-Elmas airport routes, following the good results recorded on the Verona-Venice route.

Thanks to the implementation of artificial intelligence and blockchain in Frecciarossa’s customer care operations, the claim verification and validation process has been accelerated.

There is also a new development for those travelling abroad: through the app, thanks to the integration of other railway companies’ sales systems, it will be possible to purchase tickets for travel on foreign railway networks, SBB and Iryo, the Trenitalia subsidiary that brought Frecciarossa to Spain. In Europe, the Passenger Business Unit guarantees a total of around 2,700 train connections and more than 9,000 bus journeys every day.

Below is the transcript of the statements made during the event:

Luigi Corradi, Trenitalia CEO: The main novelty is considerable intermodality and sustainability. There are so many routes on offer and we have also tried to serve places that are not reached by train, i.e. tourist locations. How can this be done in the most sustainable way? I really believe that the hallmark of transport in the future will be a very strong focus on sustainability. Being electric, trains are sustainable by nature, but we have organised buses connected to the train in places that are not reached by train. Even in this regard we are talking about hybrid buses, electric buses, to really give a sustainable footprint to all transport with a very strong focus on summer locations.

 We are continuing to invest. Indeed, we have significantly accelerated this process in all three of our service levels. I like to start with the Intercity trains because after 35 years we have reinvested in new Intercity trains. We are talking about €200 million already spent, i.e. €200 million from the PNRR, and the very positive aspect is that we are already seeing the first trains, which are operating on one of the most tourist-oriented lines, the Ionian line. So they are trains running between Calabria, Basilicata and Apulia, which are very important because again they are hybrid trains.

Domenico Scida, Intercity Business Unit Director: This summer we are aiming to do better than last summer, which was already a record summer. The figures tell us that this is possible because bookings for the summer season are already on the rise. We have around 10% more bookings, so the real challenge will be to do better than last year. This is why we have tried to offer an even more comprehensive service. We stop at 200 stations a day. We have strengthened services both north and south, by the sea and in the mountains. Just to name a few locations: we have increased services to Tropea and Lecce, while in the mountains we have confirmed Bardonecchia and San Candido. For the first time, there is also a direct connection along the entire Adriatic line, with an Intercity service between Lecce and Bolzano.

Pietro Diamantini, Trenitalia AV Business Unit Director: The new additions are many summer stops, and therefore the Frecciarossa has also become a means of reaching the most iconic holiday destinations in the boot of Italy more quickly. We also have many night connections from north to south, Milan-Reggio Calabria, and the novelty this year is Milan-Lecce as well, so we are bringing people who finish work on Friday evening to Apulia, and with our Frecciarossa they can comfortably get to Apulia in the morning to enjoy the whole weekend. So there are many summer and cultural destinations, not forgetting the appeal of our art cities, but also innovations to ensure that you make the most of your time.

Luigi Corradi, Trenitalia CEO: By the end of the year, the service from Milan to Paris with the Frecciarossa will reopen. It was a very good service and we had been very successful. Unfortunately there was a landslide in France that closed the line completely. We are close to reopening and I am sure we will resume running a very good connection between Paris and Milan by the end of the year.