New Italian High – Speed Train Enters Service

Rail travel in Italy marked a milestone yesterday with the commencement of commercial services for the country’s (and Europe’s) first privately-operated high-speed train. Breaking the monopoly of state rail operator Trenitalia, the striking red-coloured Italo train from Nuovo Trasporto Vaggiatori (NTV) is now running daily between Milan and Naples, with intermediate stops in Bologna, Florence and Rome using trainsets manufactured by high-speed rail specialist Alstom.


The Italo features a unique distributed traction system that frees up space at the front and rear of the train, providing more passenger areas and improved comfort from larger windows and sound dampening which the company promises will be matched by top level service. At each station, the Casa Italo service centre offers product information, ticketing assistance and a comfortable waiting lounge for passengers.


3 travel “ambiences” are available onboard, featuring common amenities such as complimentary wireless internet access and in-seat power supply. The Club product at the head of the train features reclining leather seats/private compartments, 9-inch personal touchscreen monitors with live television and onboard hostess service. In Prima carriages, passengers enjoy a welcome drink and snack service before settling into their reclining leather seats for the journey, with a quiet coach restricting the use of mobile phones for passengers who seek to use their travel time to rest or concentrate on work. Smart carriages offer practicality without sacrificing comfort, with leather seating and self-service vending machines at a snack area available to passengers, while a cinema coach provides movie programming via high-definition screens for an additional fee.


As more trainsets are delivered, NTV will progressively add new routes linking 9 Italian cities, with Florence, Padua, Salerno, Turin and Venice joining the network in the coming months. 50 trips will be made daily and ticket prices will be tiered depending on booking lead times, travel ambience and departure times, ranging from EUR 20 for a Smart seat between Rome and Naples to EUR 354 for a Club lounge unit between Milan and Rome.


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