Let’s be real—30th Street Station isn’t exactly known for being a foodie hotspot. Still, sometimes it's about the destination and not the journey, especially when you’re hungry. Some may say you’re better off eating somewhere closer to Penn’s campus before you even leave for the station, but if you’re in a rush, desperate times call for desperate measures. Luckily, there are plenty of places to grab a coffee, a snack, or even a meal, including a couple places outside of the main hall. Here are a few of its noteworthy vendors to fit your every need.
Best for: Quality coffee
With enough seating to justify getting cozy (if only for ten minutes) with a draft latte and a pastry, La Colombe is the place to go if you want a good cup of coffee and have a little time to spare. Warning—due to its popularity, the line can get long, especially during rush hour.
Best for: Your standard early morning pick–me–up
Hating yourself for scheduling a 6 a.m. train and in desperate need of sugar/caffeine/anything to make yourself feel alive? Head over to America’s favorite to pick up a donut (technically a breakfast food) and a coffee before getting on your train. You can't go wrong here.
Pret a Manger
Best for: A healthy meal to eat once on the train
Well, it’s Pret. You know the drill. Stocked with sandwiches, salads, soups, and of course, coffee, this Penn go–to has all the classics. Take less than a minute to grab a fairly healthy and filling meal and eat it during your journey.
Best for: A quick meal, except during winter
The weather is only getting colder, but if you can stand the brutally low temperatures, the Porch offers a plethora of seating amongst a rotating variety of food trucks. Created by the University City District, the Porch is a beautifully kept park filled with tables, chairs, and greenery.
Walnut Street Cafe
Best for: When you miss your train and have to wait an hour for the next one (oops!)
Whether your train was cancelled or you ran too late, there’s nothing quite like the sinking feeling of realizing you’ll be stuck at the station for a while. Two blocks down from the station, Walnut Street Cafe is close enough—and its New American fare is tasty enough—to justify dragging your luggage there to sit down and take a moment to relax. Aside from its bakery, which serves one of the best cinnamon rolls in the area, they serve breakfast, lunch, and dinner (getting a seat will be easier during the weekday).