Leaving Your Trip in TERONTOLA

This page offers help (concrete or informational) on leaving your trip. Topics include...

  1. Where you Leave Your Trip (see immediately below)
  2. Our “Access Packages,” designed to help you to do so.
  3. Suggestions on how to time your ongoing travel, whether you are having us arrange it, or doing it yourself.
  4. Service information regarding train travel from your trip end location.
  5. Suggested post-trip visits, especially when these are not geographically obvious, but are rendered economical and convenient by direct rail connections.
  6. Hopefully helpful hints for those setting up their own travel from the trip.

If you wish to arrange some or all of your travel through us, please tell us what by means of this response questionnaire, designed to collect all the information we need to be able to book your travel.


1. WHERE and WHEN Do You Leave Your Trip?

Your trip disbands on Saturday afternoon, after a full day of riding, in Terontola, a railway junction on the main line from Florence to Rome.

If you wish to arrange your own ongoing travel (in other words, you do not want to set up any ongoing travel arrangements through us), a couple of hints regarding ongoing travel are offered at the bottom of this page. Otherwise...


2. Our ACCESS PACKAGES
as of March 15, 2016

The closest intercontinental airport is Rome.  Florence is closer, but air service from Florence is limited to domestic European flights.

Our “Access Package” includes an open rail ticket to either Rome, or to Florence, and a hotel night in either.
Our London “Access Package” includes an overnight train to London, via Paris (this train is also available Sunday night, after a Florence stop).

Base (Starting) Access Package Price:  98€ / person.
To see what this means in your currency, look here: http://www.bluemarble.org/CurrencyConv.html.
Availability is not guaranteed.  Well-located hotels in Florence and Rome can be hard to come by. 

Included:

  • A Saturday evening train to either Rome or Florence, using “open” tickets which permit you to ride the biking day on any schedule you please without stress.

  • A hotel night in either, based on shared occupancy.  Typically, most of your past weeks’ travelling companions will be travelling to one or the other.
    Shared occupancy rate is not guaranteed to singles, but if you are interested in sharing with someone from your trip, tell us that. We will pair you if anyone else requests some or all of the same dates.  See the extra cost options, below, for the price of a single room.

    See our Italian City Hotel warning on this topic.  Our hotels in Rome and Florence are not luxurious.  They are superbly located (central in Florence, convenient to transport in the much larger city that is Rome), clean, and not too dowdy.  And (perhaps a sign of their relative value) they are always full, way in advance, have draconian cancellation conditions, and aren’t in any way easy to work with.  Bottom line:  if you want to find your own place in either, please, be our guest.  This is not work we are looking for.  Or, if you want the beautiful room in the converted monastery with a view on a flowered courtyard, and aren’t too close to 500€, let us know.  But if you already know and trust us, or if you really don’t care about hotels that much, book our package with confidence, ideally well in advance....

  • Breakfast, if you have time / get up for it.

Options Offered at an Extra Cost (subject to availability)
Prices are in addition to the “Base” Access Package Price.
For a general discussion of train upgrades, see here.  Topics include the relative comfort of first versus second class, and different types of accommodation available on overnight trains.

  • If you go to Florence, and wish onward tickets to Rome or Milan on Sunday (or later) they are available for 47€ 2nd cl., 67€ 1st class.  This price includes the supplement for high-speed train seat reservations.
    Tickets are not refundable or exchangeable.  See “Flexible Tickets” below, for less constraining options.
  • First class train tickets (in lieu of 2nd class):  9€ (an inexpensive luxury).
  • Private single room in Florence:  no charge for a room with hall shower, +38€ for a room with ensuite facilities.
  • Single room in Rome:  +29€.
  • Additional hotel nights in Florence:  57€ per person shared occupancy, 93€ single, including breakfast, taxes and booking charge.
     57€ single, 79€ double or twin (for the room, not per person).
    There is no booking charge for additional nights in the same hotel as the “package night,” if they can be had.  But they are often unavailable, since we only block rooms in advance for the date of the package.  In this case, we will either look for an alternate, or let you handle the booking, as you please.  If you have us do it, our usual booking charge will apply, and we will try to book your entire stay in the alternate hotel.
  • Additional hotel nights in Rome:  75€ / person double or twin, 102€ single.

Alternate Arrangements, in lieu of our usual packages (subject to availability)
Prices are complete (in other words, they are not in addition to the "Base" Access Package Price)

  • Train from Terontola to Florence or Rome without hotel.  22€ 2nd class, 32€ 1st class.
    Rare express trains also serve this route, taking 30 minutes less to make their trips, and using more comfortable equipment.  Should you happen upon one, your tickets can be upgraded to ride it for 10€, payable to your Trip Coordinator in Terontola.
  • Saturday tickets to Milan or Venice.  Prices include high-speed train reservation charge on service north of Florence.  72€ 2nd class, 99€ 1st class.
    Tickets are not refundable or exchangeable. See “Flexible Tickets” below, for less constraining options.
    Hotel in your arrival city is available if desired (we do not, however, offer to arrange one-night bookings in Venice for Saturday night).
  • Flexible tickets to Milan or Venice, or from Florence to Rome after a night in Florence:  +19€ 2nd class, +28€ 1st class.
    To all other points:  30€ 2nd class, 40€ 1st class.
    Modifiable at any Italian railway station, on a space-available basis, without charge (or through us for 10€).  Refundable less 20%.  Note that Sunday evening trains from Florence to both Rome and Milan generally sell out, so this flexibility is limited if that is when you are trying to travel (in an emergency, local trains ply the same routes, and can be ridden without an advance reservation).
  • Saturday overnight tickets to London:  229€ if you also requested tickets from London to your trip, 269€ if not (in 1st cl., add 279€ or 319€).  Couchette included, upgrades available.
    Discount rates (80€ less in any class) are often available.
  • Overnight trains also available to Munich, Vienna, Paris, Sicily.... Discount prices usually available (starting from 89€).


3. TIMING Your Trip

The riding day is beautiful, and most enjoyable if you give the full day to it:  we suggest you not rush.  You can spend your night in either Rome or Florence (with us, or making your own arrangements).  We suggest that you not try to book ongoing Saturday travel beyond those points by other than overnight train:  doing so will effectively cut your trip short by a day.


4. Service Information
Schedules are approximate – exact timetables can be consulted at http://www.raileurope.com/index.html.
Best trains are mentioned.  Others are slower or have multiple connections.

  • To Florence.  Travel time is 90 minutes, trains run hourly.
  • To Rome.  Travel time is a shade over 2 hours, service is irregular, but roughly every hour from 4:30p.
  • To Milan.  Travel time is 4 - 4.5 hours, and service is hourly, with a connection in Florence or Bologna.
    The last Saturday night train is at 7p. 
    The first Sunday morning train from Florence is at 8:30a, ar downtown Milan at 10:30a.  Allow 90 more minutes to reach Malpensa Airport, if that is where you are going.
    If you are going to Milan on Saturday night, and unless you instruct us otherwise, we book you on the last train, arriving Milan shortly before midnight.  You are certain to be able to catch this one, no matter at what time you complete the (full) riding day.  If you reach Terontola earlier, and have asked for modifiable tickets, you may change your reservation for an earlier train on a space-available basis.  The late train carries a dining car, so you may eat on board.  Our usual Milan hotel is a short walk from the station, and has a 24-hour reception. 
  • To Venice. Rail service is every 2 hours, and trip time is 4 - 5 hours with a connection in Florence.  Reservations are required on the connecting train beyond Florence.
    Unless you tell us otherwise, we book you on the next-to-last train, departing Terontola at 6:30p and arriving Venice at 10:30p, since you are certain to be able to catch this one, no matter at what time you complete the (full) riding day.  It carries a restaurant car, so you can have a pleasant dinner on board.  If you reach Terontola in time for an earlier train, you may change your reservation on a space-available basis.  Conversely, if you wish the last train, it operates an hour later.
  • To Paris, Vienna, or London.  Overnight, depart 8p, arrive Paris or Vienna at 8a, London at noon.
  • To Geneva or Zurich.  7 hours via Sunday daylight train from Florence.


5. Suggested POST-TRIP VISITS

Well, Venice....  Or, the Alps are close by, and would provide a nice change of pace after your time in Italy...  How about some skiing in Zermatt?  The glacier slopes will already be open.


6. Hints on TRAVELLING INDEPENDENTLY After the Trip
Guests subscribing to an “Access Package” need not read this section.

See also “Timing Your Trip” and “Service Information,” above, as either of these may additionally help.

We gladly provide travel consulting (schedule or routing information, hotel suggestions or bookings) concerning post-trip individual travel. In particular, we have invested a great deal to become railway experts.  Our service fees are reasonable: a 20€ charge for all but the most complex projects – or the most simple (for instance, only a 10€ charge applies if the service is limited to the preparation of a routine rail ticket).  You will generally find them well-justified by the time they will save you in research, standing on line, overpaying for your tickets, or all three.

But, for some, this type of research is fun.  So, here are some hints, intended to start off hardened “do-it-yourselfers.”

Trains. Schedules for all routes can be consulted on this web site:
http://www.raileurope.com/us/rail/point_to_point/triprequest.htm

Terontola is a local station on the Rome - Florence main line.  Ongoing trains depart north from Florence, south from Rome. 

Planes.  Florence has a small airport with intra-European service.  Rome's is far bigger.  Pisa, which tends to be served by more discount carriers, is reachable from Florence (90 mins via direct train straight to the airport, hourly service from 6:45a).  And Ryanair serves Perugia, 30 minutes from Terontola by train (not including the trip to the airport).


If you wish to arrange some or all of your travel through us, please tell us what by means of this response questionnaire, designed to collect all the information we need to be able to book your travel.

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