Summertime promotional fare discounts prove popular with customers, have contributed to ridership increases
With a new school year starting and more employees returning to the office, the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) today announced it will extend its “More Fun, Less Fare” summertime promotional discount on its most-popular unlimited-ride passes through November 25, 2021, to encourage more riders to return to transit this fall.
Through November 25, the CTA will continue attractive discounts on three of its unlimited-ride passes:
- CTA 1-Day Pass: $5 (down from $10)
- CTA 3-Day Pass: $15 (down from $20)
- CTA 7-Day Pass: $20 (down from $28)
The summertime promotional fares have proven popular with customers, providing more than 10 million rides since they were launched on Memorial Day weekend. The 1-Day Pass experienced a nearly 250 percent increase in use compared to May 2021, and a 57 percent increase over 2019 levels. Three-day and seven-day use grew 51 percent and more than 61 percent, respectively, compared to May 2021
Pass sales also helped increase ridership, as those using passes tend to take more rides than riders who did not purchase a promotional pass. CTA conducted an online survey on the promotional passes and found that 41 percent of respondents reported they rode a lot more with the pass and 20 percent of respondents reported that the pass got them riding CTA again.
CTA ridership has been steadily increasing since the start of the year, as riders return to transit for work and recreation. The promotional fares have encouraged that ridership growth, which is averaging nearly 700,000 on weekdays.
The CTA is already the region’s most affordable transportation option, and the promotional fares offer even more value to customers. With the 1-Day Pass, customers can ride all day for the cost of one round-trip fare (which is $5 on trains, $4.50 on buses). The 3-Day Pass is ideal for weekend travel or employees working flexible days. And with the 7-Day Pass, customers essentially pay less than $3 per day for unlimited rides for the week and the weekend.
The promotional pass products are a central component of the CTA’s When You’re Ready, We’re Ready campaign, a comprehensive ridership promotion effort launched in May.
The promotional fares are available for purchase at Ventra Vending Machines at CTA rail stations, on the Ventra app, on the Ventra website, at over 1,000 retail locations, or by calling Ventra customer service at (877) NOW-VENTRA (669.8368).