After Florence, Steve and I travelled to Venice by train. We chose the Frecciarossa (‘Red Arrow’) by Trenitalia and we booked business executive seats.
We booked ‘Business Executive’ seats, the highest class aboard the Frecciarossa. So we looked forward to the two-hour journey.
Having first class tickets, we could enter the FrecciaCLUB at Firenze Santa Maria Novella railway station.
The lounge is located on ground level. You need your ticket number or code to enter the lounge but we couldn’t figure out how. We were lucky someone left the lounge so we could squeeze inside and show our tickets.
The lounge is a nice area with comfortable seats, coffee, tea, water and softdrinks. Also some cookies and ice cream! Yes ice cream.
It was impossible to use the WiFi of the lounge. I could connect but not go online. Apparently you need an Italian number. At no point do you see a registration page.
Luckily there’s the station WiFi and thanks to European Union regulations I don’t pay extra for roaming inside the EU.
As you need to show your tickets before getting on the platform, be on time. Our business executive seats where right at the front of the train, in the first coach.
The EMU is an older Trevi ETR500. ETR stands for Elettro Treno Rapido.
Business Executive for business executives
The business executive compartiment is special. There’s a meeting room, perfect for business executives (I couldn’t resist) or high government officials.
The seat resembles an older generation business class seat on airplanes. Legroom is ridiculous. It’s too much, really. They could have easily add an extra row of seats. But I won’t complain.
You can adjust your seat with a handle but it’s complicated to operate. It’s definitely not dummy proof. There’s also a hard to find power outlet. Unfortunately I don’t have a photo.
Service on bord
The amount of catering you get on board depends on the length and time of your journey. We could have a couple of drinks and snacks, not a meal.
There is WiFi on board but I had the same issue as in the FrecciaCLUB. I found the WiFi, but couldn’t go online. Very frustrating. Maybe you can pass time reading a complimentary magazine.
The closest toilet was broken so I had to go one further. The toilet is pretty standard but clean.
All in all business executive is a nice product but I’m not sure I’ll take it again. There are four classes: standard, premium, business and executive. Next time I will try ‘just business’.