Photography and Filming Guidelines

SEPTA welcomes amateur photographers and artists, many of whom capture their visits in photographs or sketch books. In return, we request they use common sense and courtesy to others in pursuit of photo and short videos for their personal use. For your safety, be familiar with the guidelines below. 


The safety of customers and employees is paramount throughout the SEPTA system. While photography is permitted in clearly defined public areas, it is not permitted in any way that may interfere with the safe movement of people or operation of vehicles.

For example, camera lights or flash bulbs should never be aimed in the direction of an oncoming vehicle or used within a moving vehicle. Camera or artist’s tripods and other equipment should not be placed in any location that might interfere with the free and safe movement of people or vehicles.

Photography is prohibited in any area that is not accessible to the public.

While the law permits photography of private citizens in public places, common courtesy would have photographers request permission of people before taking their pictures, especially close-ups.


Worldwide terrorist attacks against public transportation facilities in recent years have required a tightening of security procedures at all SEPTA facilities. Security experts consider photographing and sketching public transportation facilities as possible pre-indicators of terrorist activity.

While this unfortunate reality has not resulted in a prohibition of photography, SEPTA Transit Police and other law enforcement agencies are under orders to question anyone taking photographs or sketching transit facilities.

Obviously, these activities are almost always legitimate and that is the end of the issue. However, anyone conducting these activities in unauthorized areas of SEPTA property may be charged and detained for further investigation.

Download the SEPTA Film and Commercial Photography Request Form (PDF) 

Commercial, nonprofit, trade and student photographers and filmmakers are required to receive written permission, provide liability insurance coverage, and meet other policy requirements.

Appropriate vehicle charter, location and administrative fees will be charged. All projects must be coordinated through the Media Relations Department by calling 215-580-7842. We recommend all filming inquiries begin with the Greater Philadelphia Film Office at 215-686-2668 or

News media requests to film on SEPTA property must be coordinated through the Media Relations Department. Please call 215-580-7842 to speak with a press officer.