How is Italy's national strike affecting travel on Friday?

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How is Italy's national strike affecting travel on Friday?
Strikes on Friday are expected to cause disruption to train services in Italy, as well as flights and local public transport. Photo by GABRIEL BOUYS / AFP.

Italy is braced for a general nationwide strike on Friday, October 20th, expected to cause disruption to trains, flights, and local public transport services.


Unions confirmed on Wednesday that a long-planned 24-hour general strike planned for Friday will go ahead.

It's expected to be one of the more disruptive strikes of the season, as it was called jointly by four of Italy’s major trade unions and will affect both public and private transport operators.

Unions are calling for the renewal of staff contracts in the public sector and an end to increased working hours, among other demands.

READ ALSO: Why are there so many transport strikes in Italy?

The general strike will take the form of a series of different protests up and down the country, which may affect everything from flights and long-distance rail services to school opening times.

As usual with strikes in Italy however, there's little indication ahead of time as to which services might face disruption and it mainly depends on how many workers decide to take part on the day.

For now here's a look at the strike action planned so far:


The industrial action is set to affect some high-speed and regional rail services run by nationwide operators Trenitalia and Italo, as well as those run by northern regional operator Trenord.

Disruption is most likely between 9pm on Thursday, and 9pm on Friday.

All passengers planning to travel by train in Italy during these hours are advised to check the status of their service via the operator's website or app before setting off.


A minimum number of rail services are guaranteed to run at peak times in Italy, even when there's a strike on, though these may be especially crowded due to the impact of other cancellations.

Guaranteed services include regional trains scheduled between 6-9am and 6-9pm on weekdays. Trenitalia has a list of services protected from strike action on its website, and Italo has a similar list here.


The strikes will also involve staff at some airports, from 00.01 to 00.59 on Friday, meaning delays and cancellations are possible.

Italy's national airline ITA has so far cancelled 20 domestic flights on Friday due to the strikes.

READ ALSO: What are my rights in Italy if a flight is cancelled or delayed?

Aeroporti di Roma, the company which manages Fiumicino and Ciampino airports in Rome, warned passengers that "some flights may suffer delays or cancellations" due to the strike.

All passengers planning to fly to or from Italian airports on Friday are advised to check the status of the flight with their airline before setting off.

Flights scheduled to depart from Italian airports between 7-10am and between 6-9pm are protected from strikes and should go ahead as usual. 

Italy’s civil aviation authority Enac has published a list of flights guaranteed to go ahead on Friday on its website.


Public transport

The extent and timing of any disruption to buses, trains, trams, and other local public transport services on Friday will vary by city.

In Rome, the strike is set to impact bus, metro, tram and light-rail services run by local operators Atac and Roma Tpl. It may also affect night bus services, the capital's transport website said.

Services in Rome are however protected from strike action and guaranteed to run as normal until 8.30am and between 5-8pm.

In Milan the protests could affect city buses and trams run by ATM between 8.45am and 3pm and after 6pm, while the metro may be affected from 6pm until the end of the service.

Passengers planning to travel by public transport in any part of Italy on Friday are advised to leave extra time for their journey and check the status of their service with the local operator before setting off.


There were warnings that the strike may also affect the normal running of Italy's motorway network, as it is also expected to involve some staff working for Autostrade per l'Italia.

Usually this means drivers may see slightly longer queues at motorway toll booths at some times of day, but it's not expected to result in any major issues.

The strike could also involve cleaning and other service staff working at schools, nurseries hospitals and health facilities in some parts of the country.

See the latest updates in The Local's strike news section.




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