Updated: Sep 13, 2019
Lucky you if you have somebody to pick you up from the airport and drive you straight away to Toscolano Maderno for 2 hours. That's not my case, so I did a little experiment for my trip.
My flight was scheduled to arrive in Milan Malpensa Airport Terminal 1 at 8:15AM. To avoid wasting time in looking for a transportation to Milano Centrale from the airport, I gave an allowance of more than 2 hours to clear Passport Control and Baggage collection, so I booked my bus ride through FlixBus at 10:40AM.
The queue in Passport Control was long and I was getting worried that my 2 hours and 25 minutes allowance wouldn't be enough, but to my surprise, I was able to exit the terminal at 9:05AM!
I thought, what will I do for over an hour? I had 2 options.
1. Sit in a cafe and wait for 1hour and 35 minutes for my bus ride.
2. Pay rebooking fee and take the 9:40AM bus to Milano Centrale.
If you were in my shoes, what option would you take?
I took option 2. I did pay a rebooking fee of 5 Euros to take the earlier bus because If I chose option 1, 1 hour would go to waste and I would eventually buy something to drink or eat while waiting for my original bus. Somehow, it's a breakeven and time is of the essence here. It's a long way to Toscolano Maderno.
If you will take FlixBus to Milano Centrale, the bus is not green and has a MALPENSA SHUTTLE logo (shown below).
At Arrivals Hall, I noticed many booths for transportation to Milano Centrale and all companies had a flat rate of 10 Euros. I paid 8 Euros for my FlixBus, which was cheaper but since I rebooked my ride, I paid 13 Euros in total. (5 Euros for rebooking fee). So if time is not an issue for you, FlixBus is a good option. Otherwise, instant booking at the airport is a wise choice.
After 1hour and 10minutes, the bus stopped few steps away from Milano Centrale. This means, I finished the first part of my journey to Toscolano Maderno.
Inside Milano Centrale, my eyes were busy looking for a Trenord ticketing office. Yes, I was facing the same problem earlier. Thinking for a seamless journey, I booked my regional train ticket (from Milano Centrale to Brescia) before my flight. My ticket clearly showed 1:25PM highlighted in neon yellow. Looking at the timetable, I could take the 11:25AM train to the city of Brescia.
Just of the blue, a random guy asked me if I needed a ticket. I declined and showed him my ticket printout. He exclaimed, Ah, Trenord! it's valid for whole day and left. Somehow, I doubted him because he was not wearing a uniform. I mean, I am inside the central station of Milan and I expect that staff from an Italian transport company should wear a uniform or even a name badge to identify them. He was not.
To believe him or not, I took my chance and showed my ticket to the attendant at the entry of the platforms. The attendant let me in, so I guess this is it. I will just board the train towards Brescia and be there by 12:30PM. I paid 7.30 Euros for this train ticket.
After 1hour and 5minutes, I got down at Brescia Railway Station. This means that I finished the second leg of my journey.
This was the third leg of my journey. I took a bus from Brescia Terminal SIA Bus Station with 49 stops to Toscolano Maderno with an approximate time of 1hour and 30 minutes.
SIA Bus Station is not visible from Brescia Railway Station. You need to cross the street, otherwise feel free to inquire from the Tourist Information Office just outside the station.
The bus doesn't have a bus stop information inside. The bus stops in the streets are not consistent too, it can have signs visible or even not. I recommend that you do your research in Google maps before boarding the bus. Ask a local, if you wish but I have mobile data activated, which was a big help.
SIA Bus Ticket from Brescia to Toscolano Maderno costs 4.50 Euros.
After my 49th bus stop from Brescia Railway Station, my friend was already waiting there for me! Thank you, April!
I have finally arrived at Toscolano Maderno! If you will do this, make sure you have enough sleep and energy for all the transfers that you will make. It's a bit tiring but it's fun to move around and see different views from the fat city life to quiet town life.
Total Fare (in Euros): 24.8 Euros
8.00 - FlixBus from Milan Malpensa Airport Terminal 1 to Milano Centrale
5.00 - FlixBus rebooking fee
7.30 - Trenord from Milano Centrale to Brescia
4.50 - SIA Bus from Brescia to Toscolano Maderno
You can get away with the 5 Euros if you want to!
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