Bus operators at an employee event
Underground Train

Apply to be a Bus Operator

Great benefits, including medical, dental, pension and paid training!


  • Required to submit to and pass drug and alcohol testing as mandated by the Federal Transportation Administration.
  • Required to be at least 21 years of age.
  • Required to have an acceptable driving record
  • Required to obtain a valid State of Illinois Class "B" Commercial Driver's License (CDL) or a valid State of Illinois Commercial Learner’s Permit (CLP) with the following three endorsements: KNOWLEDGE, PASSENGER and AIR BRAKES.
  • *If you don’t have a CDL at the time of application, CTA provides paid training for candidates with CLPs to help obtain their license.
  • High school diploma or GED preferred.

Hiring process

  1. Application
    Apply online and upload your resume/work history.

  2. Testing
    Follow the instructions that are emailed to you to take the online assessment. (If you do not receive email instructions within 24 hours, check your spam or junk folder.)

  3. Interview
    Recruiters will contact eligible candidates to schedule Interview.
    (This step usually takes place 1-2 weeks after testing.)

  4. Offer is extended and background check process begins 
    Complete medical and background check.
    (This step can take, on average, 4-5 weeks)

  5. Submit any outstanding documentation
    Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) with Knowledge, Passenger, and Air Brakes endorsement
    Commercial Learner’s Permit (CLP) with Knowledge, Passenger, and Air Brakes endorsement
    (View the study guide.)

  6. Attend Pre-Hire Session
    Complete Hire Documents and learn about benefits

  7. Attend New Employee Orientation (NEO)
    Learn about the Chicago Transit Authority and the role you’ll play as a Bus Operator.

Frequently asked questions

Requirements and the application process


The CTA complies with all federal and state laws forbidding discrimination and will attempt to provide a reasonable accommodation to otherwise qualified individuals to enable them to perform the essential functions of the job.

System status snapshot
‘L’ route status
Red Line
Normal Service
Blue Line
Normal Service
Brown Line
Normal Service
Orange Line
Normal Service
Pink Line
Normal Service
Purple Line
Normal Service
Yellow Line
Normal Service
Bus routes w/alerts
Elevator alerts