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Public transportation serving Philadelphia and the Countryside...

Photo courtesy SEPTA

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The Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA) provides public transportation into and within Philadelphia as well as serving the surrounding Bucks , Chester , Delaware and Montgomery counties.

SEPTA is the nation’s sixth-largest public transit system, with train, subway, trolley and bus lines serving 1.3 million customers every day, and giving visitors an easy, affordable way to explore Philly.

Getting Around

SEPTA provides public transportation to Philadelphia and the Countryside seven days a week, with rides available as frequently as every few minutes, helping residents and visitors navigate their daily schedules and city adventures to big games at the stadium complex, major events like the Philadelphia Flower Show ,the city’s magnificent parks and more.

SEPTA’s website is a solid resource for schedules and maps where passengers can determine which lines and stops are best for them. Real-time alerts are available online and via the SEPTA mobile app ( iOS and Android ) so riders can stay on top of weather delays and route changes.

Regional Rail

SEPTA’s Regional Rail trains serve Philadelphia and the Countryside, with stations throughout the city and in Bucks, Chester, Delaware and Montgomery counties, as well as parts of Delaware and New Jersey.

Three major stations in Center City make public transportation a great choice for exploring the city. Jefferson Station , Suburban Station and William H. Gray III 30th Street Station are within walking distance of some of Philadelphia’s top attractions, including Philadelphia’s Historic District , Reading Terminal Market , City Hall and Dilworth Park , and so much more. All three stations carry passengers to and from Philadelphia International Airport and Amtrak service.

Subway System

The Market-Frankford Line (MFL) and Broad Street Line (BSL) make up SEPTA’s subway system, carrying hundreds of thousands of residents and visitors through Philadelphia every day.

The MFL , often referred to as the blue line because of the color of the line’s seats and signs, travels an east-west path through the city, with stops in popular neighborhoods like Fishtown , Old City and University City . Both lines provide 24-hour service for late Friday and Saturday night travel.

Known most commonly to locals as the El, the line is elevated for parts of the ride, giving passengers a bird’s-eye view of bustling business corridors, the expanding skyline and West Philly’s beloved Love Letters murals .

The BSL , also known as the orange line, runs between North and South Philadelphia beneath Broad Street. NRG Station — the final stop at the southern end of the line — is just steps away from the Wells Fargo Center and Lincoln Financial Field, making the BSL a great way for fans to get to Eagles , Phillies , Sixers and Flyers games as well as concerts and other events around the stadium complex.

The line also stops near South Philly dining and shopping destinations like East Passyunk; North Philadelphia attractions like the historic Divine Lorraine Hotel and refurbished Met Philadelphia performing-arts venue; Olney’s North Fifth Street business corridor; and Center City neighborhoods like Chinatown , Logan Square , Rittenhouse Square and Midtown Village.

Trolley Lines

SEPTA’s eight trolley lines provide service at street level and underground, connecting passengers to other transit lines and making stops in Center City and along neighborhood commercial corridors.

Passengers can ride to the Philadelphia Zoo or explore Fishtown using the 15 trolley line, while lines 11, 13, 34 and 36 take visitors to leafy West Philadelphia, where they can shop and dine along Baltimore Avenue in Spruce Hill and Cedar Park.


More than 100 bus routes provide ground transportation to SEPTA passengers, carrying riders throughout the city and surrounding region and providing service to Regional Rail stations. Some lines have numbers while others have letters. Many are Night Owl routes, meaning they run 24 hours a day.

Plus, SEPTA buses travel to and from Philadelphia-area casinos, including SugarHouse in Fishtown.

Norristown High-Speed Line

SEPTA’s high-speed line connects parts of Delaware and Montgomery Counties, with access to the Market-Frankford Line subway, trolley lines and the Manayunk /Norristown Regional Rail line. The high-speed line stops in many Towns of the Countryside like Ardmore , where visitors can pop into small boutiques, sit down for a tasty meal and catch a concert or comedy show.

Tickets and Payment

The Independence Pass is a great way for occasional SEPTA users to explore Philadelphia. The one-day pass allows for unlimited SEPTA rides for $13 per person and $30 for a family of up to five people traveling together.

Many SEPTA stations, including some Regional Rail stops, use smart fare technology Many SEPTA stations, including some Regional Rail stops, use smart fare technology

Many SEPTA stations, including some Regional Rail stops, use smart fare technology. — Photo courtesy SEPTA

Residents and visitors also have a number of additional payment options.

SEPTA’s smart fare system, SEPTA Key , is available on most forms of transit and continues to roll out on Regional Rail. Passengers can purchase and reload reusable Key cards with the debit card-style Travel Wallet function online and at SEPTA sales locations and station kiosks .

Key card Travel Wallet fares consistent across subway, trolley and bus lines. Key cards can also hold passengers’ monthly and weekly Regional Rail passes.

Riders not using a Key card pay extra — typically about $.50 cents more per ride — and can do so with cash (exact change only) on subway, trolley and bus lines. Regional Rail fares vary by distance. More information on fares, senior and student discounts, and transfers is available in detail on SEPTA’s website and Key website .


Many of the region’s SEPTA stations are wheelchair accessible, and every bus has a lift or ramp and can be lowered to street level. Accessible stations feature the access symbol next to the line name on SEPTA’s website.

Features of SEPTA's articulated buses include low floor design and front door ramps Features of SEPTA's articulated buses include low floor design and front door ramps

SEPTA's articulated buses include low floor design and front-door ramps. — Photo courtesy SEPTA

Individually trained service animals are welcome on all forms of transportation, and SEPTA’s website offers a text reader for those who are blind or visually impaired and need to access schedules and fare information. SEPTA Key fare kiosks at stations have Braille and raised lettering, and an audio function that converts on-screen text to spoken word.

SEPTA’s CCT Connect offers transit services to people with disabilities who are not able to use the other lines. Click here for more information on SEPTA’s accessibility services.


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