Malpensa Airport can be reached from Milan city, either by the Malpensa Express train service (originating from either Cadorna Station or Milano Centrale; but presently journey ending only at Terminal 1 at Malpensa - for T2, take the free shuttle for the short ride between terminals, taking less than 15 minutes); or by bus /coach. There are three companies that run buses to Malpensa, all three of which start from beside Milano Centrale railway station.
Earliest train reaches Malpensa Airport at 5:04 am in the morning from Cadorna Station
Malpensa Express train service, from Milan city and then only to Terminal 1 of Malpensa Airport (refer to the downloadable timetable at the Malpensa Express official website):
- earliest first three services: Cadorna - Malpensa T1, 04:27 - 05:04; Cadorna - Malpensa T1, 04:57 - 05:34; Milano Centrale - Malpensa T1, 05:25 - 06:16;
- latest last three services: Cadorna - Malpensa T1, 22:57 - 23:34; Milano Centrale - Malpensa T1, 23:25 - 00:16; Cadorna - Malpensa T1, 23:27 - 00:04
Earliest bus reaches Malpensa Airport at 4:30 am in the morning from Milano Centrale Station
The combined timetables of the three bus companies, makes buses rather than trains the most frequent service to Malpensa Airport; however, they only have one choice for a city terminus, and that is by the side of Stazione Centrale. Of the three bus companies, Malpensa Shuttle (by Air Pullman) has a marginally more extensive timetable than Autostradale (Malpensa Airport Bus Express) or Terravision:
- earliest Malpensa Shuttle bus service: Milano Centrale - T2 - T1, 03:45 - 04:30 - 04:35;
- latest Malpensa Shuttle bus service: Milano Centrale - T2 - T1, 00:15 - 01:00 - 01:05.
In the early morning, the other bus companies have similar services, Terravision departing at 03:50, and Autostradale departing at 04:00. However, if you needed to do the same Centrale - Malpensa trip late at night, Terravision's last departure is only at 21:55, while Autostradale's last departure is at 23:00.
(Check the bus timetables and other details at their official websites: Malpensa Shuttle, Autostradale, Terravision.)
The short answer therefore, is that the very earliest that you could reach Malpensa Airport by public transport is on Malpensa Shuttle's first bus service for the day, Milano Centrale - T2 - T1, 03:45 - 04:30 - 04:35. The other two competing bus companies are only scheduled a few minutes behind that; while the first Malpensa Express train service (scheduled to originate from Cadorna Station) will reach Malpensa T1 just about 30 minutes later at 05:04.
SEE ALSO: I arrive very late at night... What is the latest at night I can leave Milan's Malpensa Airport by public transport?
[Answers by Milanfinally to Frequently Asked Questions - for a trip to visit Milan, on travel or tour - Ask a Milan Question!- series of posts]