SEPTA unveils new Fare Cards for Philly Students
Students will be able to use the card up to eight times a day during the school week, from 5:30 a.m. to 8 p.m.
As schools across the Philadelphia District continue to open for the upcoming school year, SEPTA and Philadelphia Superintendent Dr. William Hite announced at a press conference on Thursday, they will be issuing free SEPTA student fare cards for 65,000 eligible students.
The student fare cards will replace weekly student transpasses and will use a chip to allow contact-free usage. The card will be used throughout the entire school year.
“This transition will help reduce our carbon footprint by eliminating weekly laminated passes with the reusable plastic card. It will also provide safety measures to protect against lost or stolen Fare Cards,” said Reggie McNeil, chief operating officer at the School District of Philadelphia.
Students will be able to use the fare card up to eight times in one day between 5:30 a.m. and 8 p.m. during the school week.
SEPTA services are expected to receive an influx of student riders in the upcoming school year as the COVID-19 vaccine effort continues.
“We are looking forward to welcoming students back on SEPTA and providing them with a more convenient way to access the system,” said SEPTA General Manager/CEO Leslie Richards.
SEPTA also announced it will offer free rides for Philly students on the first day of school. Eligible students who meet the distance requirements will receive their fare pass on the same day.
“Our number one priority will always be the safety of our employees and riders, including students who take SEPTA to school,” said Richards.
The school district and SEPTA also shared updates regarding its increased cleaning efforts for vehicles and stations. Employees are expected to deep clean subways and vehicles and maintenance work.
All SEPTA vehicles are expected to be ventilated with a combination of efficient HVAC systems and air purification to help stop the spread of the COVID-19 virus and its variants.
In light of recent developments, SEPTA also announced that they will be adding more security to their Market-Frankford line to ensure that students are kept safe amid the ongoing gun violence crisis scarring the city.
Another program initiated by the city of Philadelphia is the Safe Routes Philly program. The free program is committed to providing safer routes to and from school for students.
Students and parents will have access to transportation safety lesson plans in Spanish and English to increase the knowledge and skills they need for safe weekly travels around the city.
The free program is part of Vision Zero, an initiative backed by Mayor Jim Kenney to continue neighborhood slow zone programs, install more automated speed enforcement cameras, and to install more pedestrian countdown timers to all major intersections.
The program is hoping to eliminate all traffic deaths by 2030.
Materials to support traffic safety education outside of the classroom will be provided by Safe Routes Philly.
In-person learning will begin on Tuesday, Aug. 31, 2021.
To see if your child is eligible for free student fare passes visit the school district’s website.