When it comes to rail travel between France and Italy, there’s a new kid on the block. Italian operator Trenitalia has started to run its swish, speedy Frecciarossa trains between Milan and Paris – offering a new, super-fast connection between the two cities.
‘But there’s already a Paris-Milan line!’ you cry. You’re right, there is. But this new one provides some pretty meaty competition for the other direct route, which is run by French provider SNCF.
What does that competition do, exactly? Well, in the long run, we might get cheaper prices, better quality of service and maybe even faster routes. At the moment, however, Trenitalia’s prices start at €39, around the same as the SNCF service, with similar options to upgrade to business and executive classes (which essentially get you progressively bigger seats and more free food and drink).
But right now, the main difference is speed. The Frecciarossa trains can reach a dazzling 300kph (186mph), meaning they can complete the 840km route in around six-and-a-half hours. By comparison, the SNCF’s TGV route takes just over seven hours. Think what you could do in that half hour! That’s easily enough time to guzzle down a plate of Milanese risotto, we say.
The new Trenitalia route runs between Paris’s Gare de Lyon and Milano Centrale, passing through Lyon, Chambéry, Modane and Turin along the way. As of last month, when the service launched there are two return trips each way per day – plus extra trains on the section between Lyon and Paris.
Tempted to book a trip? Tickets can be bought from the Trenitalia website or app (as well as at ticket offices).