Ventra Fare system ONLY as of July 1 on CTA and PACE


Magnetic cards will no longer be accepted for Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) train and bus travel as well as on PACE as of July 1. 

This means customers must pay their fares with Ventra transit products or personal contactless debit and credit cards. Cash will only be accepted on CTA and Pace buses. Also as of July 1, Pace customers who pay with cash will no longer be issued a Transfer Card, matching a pre-existing CTA policy. 

All those who are part of what CTA claims 2% and PACE 30% of their riders who have NOT transitioned as yet, here is the information you need: 

  • Ventra Cards are available invending machines at CTA’s 145 rail stations; more than 1,300 retail locations in Chicago and the suburbs; online; and over the phone at (877) NOW VENTRA (877.669.8368). 
  • $5 Ventra Card fee for new cards continues to be waived at retailers until July 7 at the retail locations. At CTA stations the $5 one-time new card fee is charged but is immediately refunded as transit value upon registration of the card. 
  • Mail-in option CTA customers can also mail in certain transit cards, Chicago Cards and magnetic stripe permits to have their balances transferred to registered Ventra Cards through September 1, 2014. Forms and instructions are available on buses, in rail stations and online. CTA fare cards eligible for mail-in balance transfers include unused magnetic stripe 30-day unlimited ride period passes and stored-value fare cards, including magnetic stripe fare cards, Chicago Cards and permits loaded at vending machines. The combined transit value on the cards must be at least $5 and there is an 8-card limit per customer. RTA reduced and free ride customers can also use the mail-in option to transfer balances to their RTA-issued reduced or free ride Ventra cards. Balances will be transferred within 30 days of receipt of mail-in request forms. A mail-in option is available for Pace-only tickets and passes. Please visit online for details. 
  • Free and reduced-fare customers. Customers who receive free or reduced fare cards through the Regional Transportation Authority (RTA) must use their RTA-issued Ventra card as of July 1. For assistance in activating an RTA-issued card, call 877.450.5328. To update your information if your name, address or phone number has changed, call 312.913.3110.


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