- Booking Train Tickets in Italy
- Getting to Florence from Rome
- Getting to Florence from Venice
- Getting to Florence from Livorno
- Best Hotels in Florence
- Best Time to Visit Tuscany
How to get to Florence from Pisa
- Booking Train Tickets in Italy: The best site for booking Italy train tickets is ItaliaRail.com. It’s the easiest website to use and usually has the cheapest prices.
- By train: From the airport, take the 5 minute PisaMover train to Pisa Centrale train station. Then take a train to Florence, about a 50 to 80 minute ride, depending the train’s speed and number of stops. This is the best option, as is offers a great combination of affordable rates, flexible times, more spacious seating, and easy luggage storage. Plus riding the train is a totally Italian experience. More info and photos on taking the train below. I recommend booking train tickets in advance.
- By bus: There is direct bus service every day by Autostradale from the Pisa airport to Santa Maria Novella, the main train station in Florence. Buses run every hour and fifteen minutes from 9 a.m. until 12:40 a.m. The rates are €14 for adults and €7 for children. Bus rides take approximately 70 minutes, but can fluctuate depending on traffic. Though bus fares are comparable to trains, seats are smaller and total trip times are less reliable due to traffic. Large luggage is stored in a compartment under the bus with room for some small items above the seats.
- By taxi: Taxi is a much more expensive option than the train or bus, but if you are traveling with children or unwieldy luggage, this is the easiest and most flexible way. A taxi costs about €180 one-way, depending on mileage and time. There are always taxis waiting outside of the airport. This is a suitable option for groups of up to four.
- By private transfer: There are daily shuttles from the Pisa airport to Florence. It is cheaper per person than a taxi (though still not as cheap as a train or bus), but you do need to book ahead. Sun Transfers is the best private transfer company running from Pisa to Florence. Rates listed are round trip, beginning at €281 for up to three passengers, with fares per person falling for larger groups of up to eight.
- By driving: Renting a car in Florence is cheaper in the long run than taxiing, and the rules of the road in Italy are similar to those in the U.S. The drive from Pisa to Florence will take a little over an hour, and the route includes tolls. Driving is a great option if your trip to Florence includes a few day trips to other Tuscan cities or into the wine country. But if the bulk of your travel days will be spent in Florence itself, then a car is more trouble than it’s worth, due to the limited and expensive parking and the fact that most hotels in Florence are inside the pedestrian-only zone.
Pisa-Florence Train Schedules
The PisaMover runs between the Pisa International Airport to the Pisa Centrale train station every 5 to 8 minutes every day from 6 a.m. to midnight. The 2 km journey takes about 5 minutes total and makes only one stop (at San Giusto Aurelia, where there are two parking lots) before continuing on to Pisa Centrale. The timetable is the same on weekdays as it is on weekends and holidays.
Trains running from Pisa Centrale Station to Firenze Santa Maria Novella (Firenze SMN, the main train station in Florence), run almost constantly, about every 7 to 30 minutes, depending on the time of day. The first train of the morning is an exception, with an hour after its departure until the next one. Pisa to Florence train service begins at 4:15 a.m. and ends at 10:30 p.m. Train timetables are the same on weekdays, weekends, and holidays.
Pisa-Florence Train Fares
The PisaMover costs €2.70 per adult one-way or €5.40 round trip. PisaMover tickets can be purchased via credit card or cash (in Euros) at any of the four kiosks at the airport station. Cash purchases can also be made at one of their offices, but none are at the airport. One child under one meter tall rides free, accompanied by an adult. Two adults can accompany two children under one meter tall each, with both children riding for free. But if one adult is with two or more children, only one child rides for free; the rest are charged at the standard rate.
Tickets from Pisa Centrale to Firenze SMN cost €8.40 per adult one way; Trenitalia operates this route. Children at or under 4 years old ride free if they sit in an adult’s lap. Children between 4-11 are charged at a 50% discount off adult fare and get their own seat. Seats can be purchased for children under 4 at the standard child rate, too (do this if using a car seat). Trains are rarely full, so if the train starts moving and there are empty seats near, it is ok for the younger kids to use them.
Bimbi Gratis: Children under 15 can ride free as part of Trenitalia’s Bimbi Gratis program. To take advantage of this, tickets must be purchased two days in advance as part of a family group of 2-5 people, with at least one adult. Adult fares remain the same, just the child tickets are free.
Trenitalia tickets can be purchased at any of the kiosks or ticket offices at the train station on the day of travel. They can also be purchased online 24 hours or more before the train’s scheduled departure.
Wait Times and Delays
Italian trains (and buses, for that matter) are frequently delayed by a few minutes. Delays can happen anytime, but they are most frequent near the major holidays of Christmas and Easter when there are more passengers.
Delays can also be caused by worker strikes, though these are never by surprise. All strikes must be announced two weeks in advance, cannot last more than 24 hours, and are never allowed in July, August, late December, early January, or in the days around Easter or elections. In the case of a strike, trains still operate but on a limited schedule.
In the case that a delay is long enough that it causes a passenger to miss a connection, the purchased ticket can be redeemed on the next train out, within an hour after the original train’s departure time. If the train they need to connect to is the last train of the evening, let the conductor know; they may be able to have that train wait.
Pisa to Florence with Kids
On Trenitalia, Children under 4 years old ride free with no seat reservation, or at 50% of the adult rate (€4.20) with a reserved seat. Children 4-11 ride at half price, too. However, for groups of 2-5 where at least one is an adult and at least one is a child under 15, then all children under 15 in that group ride free and get their own seat. To take advantage of this offer, tickets for the group must be purchased at least two days in advance.
In general, all children under 12 must be accompanied by an adult. Children between 12-16 may travel alone with a signed consent form from their parent or legal guardian. Contact Trenitalia directly for details on unaccompanied minors.
Food On Board or at the Station
The train from the airport to Pisa is a short ride, so no food is offered on board.
There are several options for grabbing a bite at the airport on the way to the PisaMover station. Walking directly from the arrivals hall, making a left takes you down the long hallway to the PisaMover station. Along this hallway, there is a pizzeria, pasta restaurant, and several cafes, mixed in with shops. There is an escalator to the left a few meters down, which goes up one floor to more restaurants and shops.
In Pisa Centrale station also has several restaurants on the ground floor facing the Piazza, including a Chef Express snack bar/buffet, McDonalds, and a few cafes; none of these area great, but they are filling. Vending machines are located on Platform 1. However, if you exit the station and walk across the Piazza, there are several great restaurants right there, the best being Pizzeria Da Filippo and Istanbul Bar Kebab, right next door to each other.
Location of the Train Stations
The PisaMover train is at the airport station less than 40 meters from the passenger terminal, connected via indoor hallway followed by an outdoor covered walkway. The route from the arrivals area to the station is clearly marked. If in the arrivals hall and facing the airport exit to the Piazza with the gates behind you, the train station will be to the left. Walk straight and continue to follow the signs. This will lead outdoors. Continuing straight will take you to the station, marked with a large sign with stairs or elevators going up to the platform.
Pisa Centrale station is located on the south side of the Arno River, walking distance to most of the city’s attractions, which area all north of the station. Heading due north, it is just a 2 km (23 minute walk or 10 minute taxi ride) to the Leaning Tower and the Duomo. Palazzo Blu Museum, the Royal Palace, and Santa Maria della Spina church are only 1 km north of the station, while the Piazza dei Cavalieri and the Botanical Garden are in between the aforementioned attractions and the Leaning Tower.
Pisa Centrale offers luggage storage. If you have the time, it’s worth it to drop your bags here, and check out the sights (the Leaning Tower at the very least!) before moving on toward Florence.
Getting to Florence from the Pisa Airport or Pisa Centrale
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