Trenitalia and Ouigo trains

ITALY: French national passenger operator SNCF Voyageurs has announced plans to launch open access high speed train services within Italy from 2026, with the target of obtaining a 15% market share by 2030.

SNCF Voyageurs Italia has applied to infrastructure manager RFI for access rights for 15 years which would enable it to operate nine daily return serves on the Torino – Milano – Bologna – Firenze – Roma – Napoli route and four on the Torino – Milano – Brescia – Verona – Padova – Venezia route.

The services would be operated using 15 Alstom TGV-M four-voltage trainsets ordered in 2022 for international use. These will be customised for Italian domestic use.

NTV Italo and Trenitalia high speed trains (Photo Jérémie Anne)

Announcing its plans on June 12, SNCF Voyageurs said the Italian high speed rail market is dynamic and important, with 56 million passengers/year and an estimated 80% of travellers who do not currently take a high speed train being interested in potentially travelling by rail.

SVI previously operated Paris – Torino – Milano international services, although these are currently suspended because of the Maurienne landslide.

SNCF Voyageurs currently serves nine countries, and with European markets opening up to on-rail competition, it is aiming to grow its ridership. It launched Ouigo Espana in 2021, and has now carried 10 million passengers in Spain.

No decision has been taken on the potential use of the Inoui or Ouigo brands in Italy, according to SNCF TGV-Intercités Managing Director Alain Krakovitch.