Thursday, October 31, 2013

A Refresher on Taking Your Bike on Regional Rail

In theory, taking your bike on regional transit opens up new travel opportunities. You can be more mobile on both ends of your train trip, and bike in otherwise inaccessible or inconvenient places. In practice, however, you have to manage byzantine rules regarding which trains will accommodate your bike, and when. You may also have to deal with train conductors who don't know the posted rules of their own transit system.

To deal with the former, here are the rules for our regional train systems. To deal with the latter, we recommend carrying a copy of the rules with you. Put it in your wallet or on your phone and refer to it in a friendly way if a dispute with a conductor arises.

All rules are laid out in this handy 3-page PDF. For regional rail specifically:

  • 2 bikes per car, stored in designated areas, allowed on all trains except:
    • Weekday inbound trains arriving at a Center City Station btw 6:00 - 9:30 AM
    • Weekday outbound trains leaving a Center City station btw 4:00 - 6:30 PM
  • Center City stations are: University City, 30th Street, Suburban, Market East, and Temple University

On PATCO: PATCO allows bikes at all times.

On NJ Transit:

  • Bikes are allowed at all times on the RiverLINE and the Atlantic City Line
  • The Northeast Corridor Line to New York has a complicated set of rules

You can view SEPTA's bike and ride brochure below: