If you thinking about taking a “NIGHT TRAIN in ITALY”….. Do yourself a favor….. DON'T!!!
Let me tell you about our “vacation” in Italy! My husband and I have been married for 12 years and since he is from Europe, throughout our marriage, his dream has been to get me to Europe to see how “the other side lives”. Being Italian myself, I was very excited to visit Italy! We started planning our European vacation back in April and decided to take a Mediterranean cruise on Celebrity Millennium from Venice to Barcelona because the itinerary was excellent and also wanted to see Paris. We got busy booking our cruise and all the travel arrangements from place to place. My husband was thrilled with the fact that we would start in Paris and take a sleeper train at night to continue our journey to catch our ship in Venice. He said it would be wonderful experience for me and a great way to travel in addition to all our flying. Our three days in Paris were phenomenal. We boarded our train #221 Paris-Venezia on Tues. Aug. 28, 2007 for our journey to Italy. We got in our coach 95 couchette 45-46 and got cozy for the nights ride. We ask our conductor who collected our passports for two blankets which he delivered later , locked the door and went to sleep at around 23:00. We awoke around midnight and checked our watch for the time.
Falling back to sleep, we awoke around 5:00 am and discovered my husbands' watch was missing. We checked around the floor and my husband said somebody took it and immediately went for our money and documents in his “fanny pack” only to discover every bit of cash we had for travel, 1500 Dollars + 500 Euro's was GONE!! We were robbed while we slept with our door locked and money in the “fanny pack”! My husband immediately went to the conductor to report it and found him standing with two “undercover officers” who never show any ID's. They came back to the couchette and did a “report”. After train stopped in Venice we went to the police station and filed a report. We then went to get a cash advance off our credit card that was not stolen and the lady informed us it happen every day. I said there is no way somebody would come in my room and I would not wake up and she informed me that thieves use conductor's key's to open your couchette and spray your room and it knocks you out so you won't hear anything and that how they rob you.
What a horrible nightmare it is to make plans for months, make all the arrangements, take time off from work and packing for a wonderful vacation only to be robbed of all your cash while you sleep before you even arrived to your cruise ship! For these people to invade our privacy and break into our couchette and drug you while you sleep to steal all our money is something we will never get over. We arrived at our ship and began our journey at sea. Along the way, we met a couple that travel by train from Paris to Venice two days earlier with four people in their room and she was robbed off ALL her currency as well. She had it tucked away in four different envelopes and the thief had time to go into every envelope and empty them one by one while four people slept. We got a copy of their police report if you are interested.
This is my first trip to Europe and my first and last ride on your train was a horrible and frightening experience. After have returned home, I decided to go on the internet to read about all the other victims of this horrible ordeal. We feel TRENITALIA is a 100% responsible for the safety of its travelers and we paid approx. $500 to travel on your train only to be invaded and robbed!!! We do feel company is 100% responsible for allowing this theft to occur every day, on a regular basis and feel it OK to accept this behavior from your own employees. There is no doubt in our minds you are fully aware of this incredibly horrible crime and allow it to happen on a daily basis. We also feel your conductors are definitely part of the whole operation and you as a company are fully responsible for allowing people to pay for ticket to ride your train only to be robbed on a daily basis.
Why there are no cameras on the sleeper trains to prevent this? We are planning to go to the television with our story so we can let the world know about our wonderful TRENITALIA experience. This has been a devastating event for our trip which completely ruined our desire to EVER visit Italy again! If this was your goal, congratulations…You have succeeded! With sincere regret of traveling TRENITALIA…
Trenitalia is a horrible company. It features the most unreliable schedules, with thousands of delays and cancellations, and some of the ticket inspectors should be directly fired because the obviously [disrespective] ways they treat foreigners. I am talking generally - and specifically thinking about a case I saw of an inspector harassing a (German?) tourist in the 9717 train too, when we were very close to the end.
Look, if you have a problem with Trenitalia (very likely as the company is systematically deficient), send a "Modulo" with your complaint. They will probably use it as toilet paper, but it's a start. It's rarely worth it taking the train, I really think they keep alive thanks to their monopoly.
I have spent numerous hours over the past 2 days attempting to book train tickets for 2 people from Milan to Naples, Rome to La Spezia on the Trenitalia website, of which booking was fine, but their credit card payment system is appalling. I've tried with 4 different credit cards, too many to have I know, but then found another way to confirm booking with postoclick for payment then to be made within 24 hrs, which I thought would give them time to fix their problem. Could still not pay for tickets!
Lo and behold, nothing changed!
I then go to the complaints area, to send an email and advised, all in italian version of which I attempted and this woulddn't go through as some of the details I entered would not accept. No matter what I entered pretending to reside in Milan to make things easy, still would not go through. So then resorted to phoning their call center, only to receive a message service to leave number and will call back.
I truly wonder.
There was another conciliation link which offered to receive a fully faxed written description if haven't heard back from Trenitalia after 6 months! I will be travelling next month!
I cannot believe that a huge transport company with a website cannot process any credit card transactions, all Visa and MC. I have been left with a very sour taste already at their total incompetence. I mean to say, it's not like websites have only just been invented!