Italian airline ITA Airways and the country’s state-owned railway Ferrovie dello Stato Group have announced plans for a rail-air partnership.

The two firms have signed a Memorandum of Understanding “to create increasingly effective multimodal services between air and train”, including a joint offering of integrated rail-air tickets and combined loyalty programmes.

Few details have been announced at this stage, but the MoU aims to create “an easy and convenient ‘end-to-end’ travel experience, with the purpose of developing common digital platforms”.

ITA said that intermodailty was “a key element in ensuring connectivity between the Italian territories, which is particularly important for an airline operating with a hub and spoke model”.

Ferrovie dello Stato Italiano operates the Trenitalia brand with a mixture of regional, long-distance and high-speed services.

In 2019 there was speculation of a joint takeover of Alitalia by Ferrovie, Delta and Easyjet, before the flag carrier was eventually closed and ITA Airways launched in late 2021. has published detailed analysis of the potential benefits of the ITA Airways / Ferrovie dello Stato partnership, in a country with “unique socioeconomic and geographic characteristics”.

Meanwhile Lufthansa has also signed a MoU with Ferrovie dello Stato Italiano for cooperation between the two companies.

Again the exact details of the partnership have yet to be agreed, but in a statement Lufthansa said that “The intention is to negotiate a contract for a cooperation in feeder traffic within Italy in order to link the various modes of transport in a better and more customer-friendly way”.

“The aim of the planned cooperation is in particular to bring passengers with Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane rail connections to and from their respective flight connections at various Italian airports,” the carrier continued.

In recent years European carriers have increasingly embraced rail-air partnerships, both to offer increased connectivity to customers and to appease environmental groups keen to curb unnecessary domestic flights.

Last year KLM launched a rail-air link with French-Belgian high-speed train operator Thalys (now part of the Eurostar Group).

KLM launches rail-air with Thalys,,