Currently, the primary mode of transportation from Philadelphia to wineries is by car. For the wineries in Chester and Delaware Counties, the interstates that visitors can use are I-95, I-276 and I-76W. Visitors can use I-95, I-476 and I-76 to access the wineries in Bucks and Montgomery Counties.
The public transportation system in Philadelphia, the Southeastern Philadelphia Transportation Authority (SEPTA), does have a regional rail system with stations close to at least one winery in each of the counties (SEPTA, n.d.). A One Day Individual or Family Independence pass would offer visitors unlimited travel on SEPTA for one day. However, further transportation would be needed. Visitors may also utilize Uber and taxis, although such services may be expensive. For example, if a visitor leaves from Independence Hall to visit Unami Ridge Winery, the cost of using Uber one-way would be from $61 to $250 depending on the type of vehicle selected (Uber, n.d.). To visit the same winery using a taxi, the total cost of a one-way trip (with 15% tip) would be $129.20 (Taxi Fare Finder, 2016).
There are few winery tours. In Chester County, the Brandywine Valley Wine Trail leads visitors to Black Walnut Winery, Borderland Vineyard, Kreutz Creek Vineyards and Paradocx Vineyard. This tour is self-guided, and visitors can stop at museums and other nearby tourist attractions. Restaurants and hotels are also located near the trail. Group visits of six or more must notify the wineries before the visit. Buses and limousines must be approved by the wineries as many of the wineries are small and may not be able to accommodate these vehicles (Brandywine Valley Wine Tour, n.d.).
The Bucks County Wine Trail includes all of the county’s wineries. Transportation is not provided for this tour. There is one company, Tasting & Tours, headquartered in New Hope, Pennsylvania, which takes visitors to three wineries. This tour also includes lunch at a local restaurant. Though Tasting & Tours transports visitors to wineries, the company only picks up visitors in three towns in Bucks County. Trophy Limousine, located in Philadelphia, offers wine tours to Bucks County.
While tours and ways to get to the wineries do exist, there are no tour companies, with the exception of Trophy Limousine, that pick up visitors either in Philadelphia or at another specified location, such as a SEPTA rail station located close to a winery. As the description of the San Francisco-Napa Valley relationship demonstrated, wineries, local businesses, tour companies and public/private transportation can work in conjunction to increase visitation. However, to determine if such a relationship can be established between Philadelphia and its surrounding counties, demand for visiting wineries must be examined.
Owners of wineries or tour companies who are interested in creating a tourism link between Philadelphia and nearby wineries may benefit from determining this demand. Preferences for possible attractions and transportation should be obtained when determining demand as this information may have an impact. If the demand is great enough, either tour companies or the wineries themselves may decide to provide and/or arrange transportation from the Philadelphia region. One method that is often used to determine such demand is the travel cost method (TCM).