Please advise me on my plans: From Germany (Bamberg) to Czech (Prague) to Austria (Vienna) and finally to Italy (Venice) all within 10 days, would it more economical to purchase a flexipass on the eurorail for 4 countries, provided that I will be returning to Frankfurt, Germany for my departure back to the states?
The shortest leg of that trip is about 4½ hours from Prague to Vienna. The rest are full days of travel. If you include Venice back to Frankfurt (another long day), you would be taking 3½ days of travel out of 10 total. Too much travel! Delete someplace.
Think quality, not quantity!
You may need 2 railpasses to cover the combination of western and eastern European destinations above. Trains from Vienna to Venice go through Slovenia, so you'd be traveling in 5 countries not 4. The Railpasses tab explains the options, but you could get an exact quote by calling Rick's rail department. Keep in mind that passes don't include the cost of any required reservations. It's likely purchasing point-to-point tickets would be more economical.
I second Lee's suggestion that you pick a smaller geographic area for your trip. The distances between the cities you list are long and you'd spend about a third of your 10 days traveling between them.
You can get complete information about Eurail passes from www.eurail.com. Prices are no longer set by Eurail; you can get small variations in prices depending on the reseller, but the prices shown on Eurail.com will be close.
BTW, technically you will not be traveling "on the eurorail". Eurail does not operate any trains; it is just an "umbrella" organization formed by the national rail companies in Europe to market and distribute railpasses.
For such a short trip, I'd skip Prague (it needs at least 4 days) and substitute a couple of days in Salzburg for Vienna (another big city that takes more time). Keep Venice on your itinery. On survey trips like this, we try to take an early train that gets us to the new location around noon and then 2 or 3 nights depending on the size and complexity of the city.
Regards, Another Van
There is an overnight train from Prague to Vienna (a nice one, at that) and an overnight train from Vienna to Venice. Each of those trips will only take one day off your pass, since they are overnight trains. (There's also a Frankfurt-Prague overnight train and a Venice-Munich overnight train.) So, it sounds like a 4-country "6 days within 2 months" would cover you fine. Double check to make sure though that the trains only pass through those four countries while en route to others.
Overnight trains sound much more appealing to me than plane rides from those cities, at least. It's not really taking away much of your time, since you'd presumably be sleeping anyway.