SEPTA to Lincoln Financial Field – The Best Way To Travel There


Taking SEPTA to Lincoln Financial Field, is the best way – by far – of getting to a football game in Philadelphia. Eagles games invariably sell out, and with 66,000 people invading the Sports Complex during their home games, take the Broad Street Subway there. Unless you plan on arriving very early or departing very late, it’s far and away the best option.

Moreover, there are often other events often going on elsewhere in the South Philadelphia sports complex at the same time. The Phillies’ 81 home games at Citizens Bank Park, occasionally, will be at the same time as Eagles home games in September or October, as well as pre-season games in August.

Later in the season, there are frequently 76ers and Flyers games at the Wells Fargo Center (formerly the Wachovia Center), as well as other events (concerts, etc.) which can be at the same time as Eagles home games or college football games.

As a result, SEPTA - absolutely - is the way to go for football. You can drive it to Center City, and take SEPTA from there – or just take SEPTA, the whole way. Either way works out well.

Our original explanation of how to get to the Sports Complex, resulted in the creation of the SEPTA to Citizens Bank Park Guide - accordingly, we have now decided to tackle (pardon the pun) SEPTA to Lincoln Financial Field, now. However, if you are also looking for information on how to take SEPTA to Phillies games at Citizens Bank Park, we’d recommend that you take a look at the Guide, linked above.

The Key Differences Between Taking SEPTA to Lincoln Financial Field For Football, and SEPTA to Citizens Bank Park for Baseball

A good place to start would be look at some of the differences between taking SEPTA for Phillies baseball games, and SEPTA for Eagles football games (as well as Temple football games, and the Army-Navy Game in December). There might not seem to be much difference, since Citizens Bank Park and Lincoln Financial Field are located across the street from each other, at 11th Street and Pattison Avenue, in South Philadelphia. But here are some things to think about, in terms of the differences of taking SEPTA to each.

The Size of the Crowds – Due to the Greater Seating Capacity of Lincoln Financial Field, The Crowds At Eagles Games Are Significantly Larger

Although the Phillies are currently selling out every home game, Citizens Bank Park holds only 46,000 people, compared to 66,000 for Lincoln Financial Field. With 50% more people there, and a correspondingly large increase in cars and traffic, we recommend taking SEPTA to Lincoln Financial Field, even more strongly than to Citizens Bank Park.

Football Usually Has Day Games, As Opposed To the Usual Night Games For Baseball

Most Phillies games are at night, at 7:05 PM, except for Sunday afternoons and the occasional afternoon game on the other six days. In contrast, most Eagles games are during the day, as is Temple football and the Army-Navy Game in December (during the years when Philadelphia hosts the game, about seven out of every ten).

Because of the fact that the football games mostly take place during the day, there are fewer safety issues with the Broad Street Subway than at night.

Temple football is far less popular than Eagles football, or the Army-Navy Game, as Eagles home games and Army-Navy routinely sell out, whereas the Owls do not.

Since the Phillies are the only occupant of Citizens Bank Park, you can count on the fact that it will be crowded every game. However, Temple football is far, far, far less popular than Eagles football or the Army-Navy game. So if you’re heading down for a Temple game, driving to Lincoln Financial Field is a far more attractive option- because it will be much less crowded, in terms of getting in and out of the parking lots.

Getting You Started, on Taking SEPTA to Lincoln Financial Field

We’re going to start with how to take SEPTA to Lincoln Financial Field, via the Broad Street Subway. After we’re done with that, we’ll tackle (again, pardon the punt) the question about the best ways for you to get to the Broad Street Subway, from anywhere in the region, and using various methods.

The Basics on Taking SEPTA to Lincoln Financial Field - Learning How to Use the Broad Street Subway

Lincoln Financial Field is located in South Philadelphia, at the intersection of 11th Street and Pattison Avenue, next to the southern end of the Broad Street Subway Line - also known officially as the SEPTA Orange Line, or the Broad Street Line. However, Philadelphians will usually just refer to it as “the subway” or the “Broad Street Subway”.

Ultimately, You Will Be – 100% of the Time - Getting Off the Subway At Pattison Station, Although You May See It Referred To As “AT&T Station”

You will be getting off the subway at Pattison Station, so named because it is at the intersection of Broad Street and Pattison Avenue. In the summer of 2010, SEPTA, in a bid to raise some money, sold the naming rights to this heavily-traveled station to AT&T for $5 million, and it is thus (officially known) as AT&T Station.

However, we don’t think that the name “Pattison” will ever fall out of use, simply because it had been that way for decades. In addition, most of the official SEPTA signage, elsewhere in the Broad Street Subway, still refers to Pattison – and Philadelphians will probably always call it Pattison. So, that name should still guide you. Particularly, if you ask someone “how to get to Pattison Station”, they probably will recognize that, whereas they almost certainly won’t recognize the name “AT&T Station”.

You’ll Need Tokens, In Order To Take SEPTA To Lincoln Financial Field, Via The Broad Street Subway

We strongly recommend that you purchase SEPTA tokens, in advance. The main purpose of this is not to save $0.45 a ride per trip (the small discount you’ll bank), but to save you precious time, while taking SEPTA to Lincoln Financial Field. If you have tokens, you can skip the line of people waiting to pay for fares in cash, and/or at the token machine at Pattison Station. To answer any questions about SEPTA tokens, we recommend that you take a look at our Guide to SEPTA Tokens - – which should have all of the information that you need. Now that we’ve covered where to get off the Broad Street Subway, as well as payment via SEPTA tokens, let’s turn to the next question:

Now, you know how to pay. Time to turn to trying to be on one of the Sports Express subway trains...

Usually, Three Sports Express Trains Run Prior to Every Game, In the Hour Before Kickoff at Lincoln Financial Field

They start about an hour or so prior to each game, from Fern Rock Transportation Center, the northernmost stop on the Broad Street Subway.

Of course, SEPTA always has the right to change the schedule, whenever it wants to. However, as a general rule, you can expect that there will be two or three Sports Express trains, leaving Fern Rock, on any given day, if there is a major event at Lincoln Financial Field Since they will be skipping most of the North Philadelphia stops, they will take only about 17 minutes, to reach City Hall. In turn, they then skip five local stops in South Philadelphia – so it’s only a few additional minutes to reach Pattison.

So, here's how you can incorporate the Sports Express subway trains, into your plans for taking SEPTA to Lincoln Financial Field:

Eagles Games Usually Start At 1:00 PM, Although Occasionally 4:15 PM, 8:00 PM, or 9:00 PM

If the Eagles are playing during the afternoon, which is the vast majority of the time, the kickoff is set for 1:00 PM, usually.

Consequently, the first Sports Express will leave Fern Rock around noon and arrive at City Hall at around 12:20 PM, followed by the second and third trains, separated by around 10 minutes (and after they get to City Hall, it will be about five additional minutes to get to Pattison).

Note: If the game is starting at a time other than 1:00 PM, just shift these times to whenever kickoff happens to be scheduled. If kickoff is at 8:00 PM, the Sports Express trains will likely leave Fern Rock at about 7:00 PM, and so forth. After the game, the northbound trains will be ready to leave Pattison, shortly after the end of the game.

Also, when you're making your travel plans around taking SEPTA to Lincoln Financial Field, be cognizant of the fact that you have to allot some time, for your three-block walk, to get from Broad and Pattison, over to 11th and Pattison, the location of Lincoln Financial Field.

We should emphasize, that the Sports Express subways won’t be the only ones, traveling from Fern Rock to Lincoln Financial Field, or from City Hall to Lincoln Financial Field. You can always take a local Broad Street subway train, from any of the Center City stops, to Lincoln Financial Field.

This is an option both in the beginning (for example, if you want to arrive early to tailgate in the parking lot) and afterward (if you want to stay later and tailgate in the parking lot.)

The only difference between the Sports Express and the ordinary local trains, will be that your train, after leaving Walnut-Locust (the final express stop) will be required to stop at each of the five local stops, south of Walnut-Locust – Lombard-South, Ellsworth-Federal, Tasker-Morris, Snyder, and Oregon, prior to finally arriving at Pattison.

The local train will only take about 11 minutes, just a few minutes longer than the Sports Express. However, the Sports Express is actually enjoyable, as you whiz through all the local stops, so in addition to the extra few minutes it’ll take you, you’ll also miss out on the express ride.

To Take SEPTA to Lincoln Financial Field, Where Do I Get On the Broad Street Subway?

You have three major options. Of course, you can get on at any Broad Street Subway stop, and any local southbound train will eventually take you to Pattison. However, as a practical matter, here are the stops you’d most likely use:

Option #1 – Race/Vine, City Hall, or Walnut-Locust Stations – All Included on the Sports Express Subway Trains

The first option is getting on somewhere in central Philadelphia, at one of the stops in Center City that the Sports Express makes: Race-Vine, City Hall, and Walnut-Locust, in that order, running north to south.

Option #2 – Spring Garden or Lombard-South Stations – In Center City, But Not Included On the Sports Express Subway Trains

The second option is getting on at one of the two Center City stops not included on the Sports Express trains – Spring Garden and Lombard-South.

Option #3 - Fern Rock Transportation Center - The Northernmost End of the Broad Street Subway, Where the Sports Express Trains Originate

The third is getting on at Fern Rock Station – the northernmost end of the Broad Street Subway, from which all subway trains, Sports Express or otherwise, originate, and riding it all the way to Pattison.

Option #1 - Getting On the Broad Street Subway at Race-Vine, City Hall, and/or Walnut-Locust Stations

If you are already in Center City Philadelphia, or you are coming from another SEPTA line, the odds are your best bet is to get on the Broad Street Subway, at one of those three stations.

Race-Vine Station bridges the parallel intersections of Broad and Race Streets and Broad and Vine Streets, just north of City Hall.

City Hall Station is at Broad and Market Streets.

Walnut-Locust Station bridges the parallel intersections of Broad and Walnut Streets and Broad and Locust Streets.

The Sports Express will stop at all three of these stations. But especially if you haven’t done this before, we’d recommend City Hall.

Option #2 - Getting On the Broad Street Subway At Spring Garden and/or Lombard-South Stations

Spring Garden Station is located at the intersection of Broad and Spring Garden Streets, the first stop above Race-Vine.

Lombard-South Station is located at the intersection of Broad and Lombard Streets, and Broad and South Streets, bridging those two parallel intersections.

The only disadvantage to these two stops, is that you’ll have to take a local train from those stops, as they aren’t included on the Sports Express subway trains. So getting on the Broad Street Subway will take slightly longer, but it will only cost you a couple of minutes.

Option #3 - Getting On the Broad Street Subway, At Fern Rock Transportation Center

The main reason for getting on at Fern Rock, would be if you are taking SEPTA Regional Rail from a more distant point in the region. Fern Rock Transportation Center is located at 11th and Nedro Streets, in North Philadelphia, and is the northernmost end of the Broad Street Subway.

This will generally only be an issue, if you are starting your journey from one of the northern SEPTA Regional Rail lines, that stop at Fern Rock Transportation Center, before continuing on to Center City. Only about half of them do, and you have to make sure that your line actually stops at Fern Rock, first, before you can consider this method.

We’ll talk about that option in greater detail, when we get to SEPTA Regional Rail.

Taking SEPTA to Lincoln Financial Field - Getting to the Broad Street Subway From Other Transit Lines

Since there are several different ways of reaching the Broad Street Subway - and since each transit line offers you different choices, let's look at some of the ways...

Taking the Purple Phlash Trolley to Either the Broad Street Subway or the SEPTA Blue Line, To Go To Lincoln Financial Field

You can take the purple Phlash Trolley not only to City Hall Station, but also a variety of Blue Line stops. However, be cognizant of the fact that the Phlash only runs from May 1 to Halloween. There’s about three months of overlap, in August, September and October, as football season runs only from August to January, at the latest.

In summary, you can use the Phlash for the first half of football season, through the end of October.

We should note that the Phlash, in addition to the fact that it only runs six months of the year, will also shut down around 5:30 PM - 6:00 PM, depending on the stop.

The Phlash is more useful for football games at Lincoln Financial Field, than for Phillies games at Citizens Bank Park, because football is more often played during the day (when the Phlash is still running). In contrast, most Phillies games are at night (when the Phlash is no longer running).

Just get off the Phlash at one of its stops near City Hall Station, at Broad and Market - or take the Blue Line to City Hall - and follow the directions above.

You Can Use Free Interchange Between the SEPTA Blue Line and the Broad Street Subway, at the SEPTA Blue Line 15th Street Station and the Orange Line City Hall Station

If you have the ability to reach a SEPTA Blue Line stop, it will permit you to quickly and easily connect with the Broad Street Subway at City Hall Station. There is free interchange between the , and the Broad Street Subway City Hall Station. (The SEPTA Blue Line is also known officially as the Market-Frankford Line, and unofficially as “the el”, in Philadelphia parlance.)

The first thing you have to do, when you arrive at the SEPTA Blue Line stop, is to determine in which direction you need to ride. The key to this question, is figuring out which way will take you to the Blue Line 15th Street Station. If you are coming from west of 15th Street, you want a Blue Line train, which is heading "Eastbound to Frankford".

Conversely, if you are coming from east of 15th Street, you want a train which is headed "Westbound to 69th Street". Every Blue Line stop has prominent signs directing you in one of those two directions. There also will be a Blue Line map, so that you can figure out where you are, relative to 15th Street Station.

When your el car arrives at 15th Street Station, be ready to walk out, immediately. It’s not like the SEPTA Regional Rail train, where they give you reasonable notice of the stops. You have to be standing up at the door when you arrive at 15th Street. You won’t have time to react if you’re seated far away from the door and you don’t realize that the el train is already at 15th Street.

Once you’re off the el train, follow the signs in orange and white for City Hall / Broad Street Line / Orange Line. This will take you to the City Hall Station - it's a free interchange, with no transfer or an addition token necessary. All it requires is a walk through the system - pay attention to the signs, as you’ll be going down flights of stairs and turning corners.

When you're on the City Hall platform, ensure that the particular subway car that you board is a Sports Express - or at minimum, that it's a regular local train going to Pattison.

Whatever you do, do not get on a northbound subway car to Fern Rock - we place great emphasis on this point, as this is vital. And just follow the instructions above for the Broad Street Subway, once you are on the right City Hall station platform, and you’ll wind up at Pattison.

The Norristown High Speed Line - the Former Route 100 Trolley - Offers Connections to the SEPTA Blue Line, At The Blue Line's Westernmost Stop, 69th Street Terminal

If you are attempting to take SEPTA to Lincoln Financial Field, and you are coming from the western suburbs of Philadelphia, you can take the Norristown High Speed Line - which offers a convenient connection to the SEPTA Blue Line.

The Norristown High Speed Line runs from Norristown Transportation Center - its northernmost end - to 69th Street Terminal, which is not only the southernmost end, but also the western end of the SEPTA Blue Line. While a transfer is required (at the cost of $1.00), it is an easy way to change lines, as you just follow the signs, and 69th Street Terminal was renovated a few years ago.

As we note, in detail, on the Norristown High Speed Line page linked above, be cautious when taking the SEPTA Blue Line all the way to 69th Street late at night, as the stops in its westernmost area, from 69th Street to 40th Street, is not safe. This is more practical if you are planning to take SEPTA to Lincoln Financial Field for a daytime football game, or if you are traveling in a large group. (You shouldn't encounter any trouble on the trolley, though, regardless of the time of day.)

Taking SEPTA to Lincoln Financial Field - Connecting From SEPTA Regional Rail Service to the Broad Street Subway

When Taking SEPTA To Lincoln Financial Field - You Should Get Off Your SEPTA Regional Rail Train At Suburban Station, To Connecf With the Broad Street Subway at City Hall Station

Suburban Station is the closest to City Hall Station, and it also has a concourse in which you can travel, with signs pointing you all the way to the Broad Street Subway entrance. Suburban Station is located at the intersection of 16th Street and John F. Kennedy Boulevard. For the 81 Phillies home games, and various other events there, we've built a comprehensive SEPTA to Citizens Bank Park Guide - which covers nearly every piece of logistical information you'll need to get to the ballpark.

Taking SEPTA to Lincoln Financial Field - "the football stadium" or "the Linc", to native Philadelphians - is just as easy. It's located directly across the street from Citizens Bank Park, at the other side of 11th Street and Pattison Avenue.

And since the information you'll need to get to the final stop, Pattison - located at Broad Street and Pattison Avenue, although now known officially as AT&T Station - and make the three-block-walk east to Lincoln Financial Field, is exactly the same-

Just click on the aforementioned link - namely, the SEPTA to Citizens Bank Park Guide - to find out how to take SEPTA to Lincoln Financial Field.

NEW - UPDATE - October 14, 2010 - Here Is A Revised, Improved, and Landmarked Set of Directions, For Getting From Suburban Station to the Broad Street Subway and Back Again, For Taking SEPTA to Lincoln Financial Field

Here's what you need to do, once you come up from your train platform:

When you come up from the Suburban Station platform, you will see the BOOKS FABER NEWSTAND on the left, and the first of two Dunkin’ Donuts on your right.

Go straight between them, till you reach an au bon pain croissant shop on the left, a McDonald’s on your right, and some clear/white illuminated pillars.

Just beyond the white pillars, will be purple pillars. One purple pillar will have a small, hastily added white sign reading in dark text:

“To AT&T Station and Sports Complex” with a directional arrow.

(“AT&T Station” being the new official name for Pattison, although all the other signs still say “Pattison”.)

Follow the directional arrow on the AT&T Station sign on the purple pillar. You will see a restaurant on your left side, with neon red Coors and Budweiser signs in the window – PC’s Restaurant.

You will see a tall kiosk in the corridor – a directory, reading at the top, “Welcome To Two Penn Center”. SEPTA has placed the same “To AT&T Station and Sports Complex” sign on the right side of that kiosk. (Not where the pedestrian can see it easily- that is to say, on the front! Instead, it's on the side…)

So just look for it, and continue past the kiosk.

There will be the second Dunkin’ Donuts on your left (commuters love donuts, clearly), and a Pizza Hut Express on your right. When you get past those two restaurants, make a left turn.

You will now have a Taco Bell on your left, and a Church’s Chicken on your right. Keep going. You will have the U.S. Post Office on your left, and the SEPTA Store on your right.

At the Post Office/SEPTA Store "intersection", there will be a big overhead sign reading:

Broad Street Line ^ (straight directional arrow)
Market-Frankford Line -> (right directional arrow)

You want the Broad Street Line. So keep going straight.

You’ve now entered an illuminated, wide corridor. You can see open air in front of you. Keep walking. When you come to the end of the corridor, you have two choices:

One choice is that you can either go up a flight of steps into open air – which is the City Hall courtyard. You don’t want this option.

The other choice is to look left, and go down a flight of dilapidated steps, that have seen better days. That’s the choice you want.

Go down those steps, as you’ll see orange signs for the Broad Street Line. Once you’re there, drop your token in the turnstile. Veer left out of the turnstile, toward orange signs that say “Southbound To Pattison”.

Coming back can be more intimidating, especially because the Concourse will be less crowded.

Go up the flight of dilapidated steps, and make a right turn into the wide, illuminated corridor. Go back past the Post Office and the SEPTA Store.

You will see on your right, overhead, a gigantic sign in caps reading:

TWO PENN CENTER PLAZA

Shoot the gap, so to speak, under that sign – with the Pizza Hut Express on your left and the Dunkin’ Donuts on your right, this time.

As soon as you go under that sign, you’ll see the au bon pain sign directly in front of you, a distance away – use that as a beacon or a lighthouse, like a sailing ship would. Just keep going, till you get to au bon pain.

Congratulations. You’re back in Suburban Station. Just find the right train platform, and head home.

Should you get lost, there are very large Suburban Station Concourse Directory, maps around the area of the pillars. There are two of those maps, in fact, along the wall. They are next to each other along a corner and corridor, just past the McDonald's, in the corner...


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