European Trains in Spain and Italy

Freccabianca TrenItalia train
Ticket Validation Machine
Interior Freccabianca First Class Cabin

When planning our recent trip through Europe we researched a variety of methods to get from city to city. The first method that came to mind was rail. Trains in Europe are supposed to be everything they are not in the U.S. Cheap, fast and plentiful. While they were indeed plentiful we quickly found out that they are not the cheapest option, and might just be a wash in terms of speed.  In most cases the flight option was cheaper (Madrid to Barcelona was about 100€ less per person!).