Field Trip FAQs

When our group arrives, where should we go? 
All groups check in at the front desk, just inside the main entrance of the Museum. The group leader should check in with a staff member upon arrival, notify them of the group's name, provide a final head count for students and chaperones, and finalize any remaining balance. 

Where should our group park? 
The bus drop-off entrance is located at Market St. and Columbus Blvd. at Penn's Landing. The bus driver should instruct the parking attendant at this entrance that they are dropping off for the Museum. The Museum is located at the southern end of this parking lot, at Walnut Street. Bus drivers who wish to park in this lot will be charged twice the daily car rate. There is also a Callowhill Bus Center with 43 parking spaces (on a first come, first served basis) and a waiting area as a second option. 

We are driving in separate cars; where should we park? Do you offer discounted parking? 
Independence Seaport Museum does not own any parking facility. There is discounted parking available at the Hilton Parking Garage, located at Walnut Street & Columbus Blvd. Please show your parking ticket to the staff at the Museum's front desk and they will provide a discounted 'chaser' ticket. There are also many metered spaces located near the Museum, and in Old City along Front and Chestnut Streets, just a short walk from the Museum. This is often the least expensive parking option.

Please note if you park in the Penn's Landing Walnut Street lot, a discounted rate is not available.

Our group is running late. How can we reach someone at the Museum to let them know? 
If you are running late or need to contact any one at the Museum the day of your visit, please call the front desk at 215-413-8655. Please be sure to tell staff the name of the school or group from which you are calling. 

How much time will my field trip take? 
Self-guided visits are entirely up to you, though most visitors spend a total of an hour and a half inside the Museum and on our historic ships. If you have booked any of our optional group add-ons (such as a guided ships tour or 'Beyond the Exhibit' experience), please plan for a two-and-a-half to three-hour visit, but note your departure time depends on how many students you have rotate through the add-ons. This will provide ample time for students to experience all programming, visit the Museum galleries and historic ships, and allow a break for lunch and using the restrooms.  

Do you have a cafeteria? Where can we eat lunch? 
Independence Seaport Museum does not have a cafeteria and most groups eat outside, weather permitting. There are plenty of outdoor eating areas along Penn's Landing for your group to eat their lunch. In case of inclement weather, we will do our best to accommodate your group inside the Museum. All food may be stored in the Museum's locker room. Please make sure that lunches are grouped together and labeled. Food, especially gum and candy, is prohibited inside the Museum and historic ships. To learn more about renting a space for lunch, please email Alexis Furlong, Director of Sales and Marketing, at

If I have prepaid for more students than attend, do I receive a refund? 
If on the day of the field trip there is a credit on the account it can be used for a future visit if it is booked within a week of the initial trip. Refunds will only be issued if the group has a credit of $200.00 or more on their account after the visit. 

Do you have a gift shop in the Museum? 
Yes, Independence Seaport Museum has two gift display cases located next to the front desk, which are a perfect place to stop at the end of your trip! Available items include toys, stuffed animals, books, apparel and more. All of our items for children are priced at $20 and below. Philadelphia's 8 percent sales tax is not included in the prices, however we do have a handy chart as to what the items will cost with tax. If your students plan to visit the display cases, we suggest sending them in small groups to make sure everyone can see.

Is the Museum wheelchair accessible? 
The Museum's building and exhibits are ADA compliant, though the historic ships are not. Please discuss options and information with our booking or education staff. 

What is your chaperone policy? 
Chaperones play a crucial part in the success of every field trip. Independence Seaport Museum requires 1 chaperone per 10 students, regardless of grade level. For every 10 paying students, you will receive 1 complimentary adult admission. For any adults over the 1:10 ratio will be charged the group rate. We ask that chaperones stay with their children at all times and remind them to use their walking feet and indoor voices. Many of our exhibits are available for students and adults to play, climb, and touch, and we ask that chaperones encourage students to do so where indicated throughout the Museum and on our historic ships. 

Can I take pictures? 
Photography, without a flash, is permitted in the Museum galleries and on the historic ships. Professional pictures and photographers must be requested through our marketing department. Please feel free to tag us in your social media posts about your visit!

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