Looking for the best and most economical way to get from Rome to Tuscany this September.
Sharon, the cheapest way would be to rent a car, especially if you then want to explore the Tuscan hillside.
Understanding there are logistical and practical reasons not to drive in a foreign country, then option 2 would be to take a bus. From Rome to Florence it should take just short of 4hrs and cost between 15-30Eur. You need to check connections as I don't know where in Tuscany you want to travel to, but companies like sena/baltour will have good websites with English options http://www.sena.it/Home/78-1-en.html.
While not cheapest, my personal suggestion is to take a train. The railways in Italy are quite reliable, quick and comfy, and Stazione Roma Termini station connects everywhere in the country. The rail website is excellent and in English as well http://www.trenitalia.com/cms/v/index.jsp?vgnextoid=4ddd1a035296f310VgnVCM1000005817f90aRCRD
One thing to consider when you do your searches is that, even when you have selected English as your prefered language, the search engine will normally only accept Italian names for locations. Most towns will be the same in both languages but do watch out for Rome which is Roma, and Florence which is Firenze. Rome's main station is Roma Termini.
Last but not least, check out Rome 2 Rio http://www.rome2rio.com which is a website that will map out itineraries per transport option. I find them super helpful!
Enjoy your travels!
PS if you need some Tuscan inspiration, I wrote a blog post about why the province is still one of my favourites in Italy http://www.aforkinlondon.com/post/73719838161/count-tuscany
Like Alex, I too would suggest taking the train. While renting a car can appear to be cheaper initially, you also have to consider gas (which is VERY EXPENSIVE) + parking (depending on where in Tuscany you're trying to explore). One helpful tidbit is to purchase your train ticket in advance. While, most of the time you can just show up and get the next available train, one time i showed up and the next train out was fully booked. I spent the next 30 mins twiddling my thumbs.
I would recommend you to rent a car. We also rented a car for our trip to Tuscany and did not regret it. We rented at http://italy.rentalcars24h.com/bergamo-airport/sixt and the prices are really low. But the core factor is the number of people you are trveling with. If you are traveling alone, it would be cheaper to take a train. In case you are traveling with two or more people, it is better to rent a car.
Have a safe trip!
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I agree with the suggestion to take the train. You get to see the countryside, meet some Italians, and generally relax....something that is hard to do if you are driving in a strange country.
Of course you can get there by train and the trains in Europe are excellent. However, once you get to Tuscany, a car gives you so much more flexibility . I suggest doing some research online to get the best price( and check company reviews). If you can drive a standard transmission you will save a ton of bucks. Automatic transmission cars are very expensive.
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