CTA Reminds Pre-Tax Transit Benefit/Chicago Card Plus Customers

April 2, 2014
The CTA is reminding certain Chicago Card Plus customers enrolled in the CTA’s Transit Benefit Fare Program through their employers to make the transition to Ventra before Friday, April 4.
The CTA has been working closely with Chicago area employers for months on transitioning their employees to Ventra. While most employees have made the switch to the modern, account-based fare payment system, the CTA wants to remind the small number of employees still using their Chicago Card Plus cards that the time to switch to Ventra is now.
Pre-tax transit funds will no longer work with Chicago Card Plus after 11:59 p.m. on April 3. To access pre-tax transit funds, customers must use a Ventra Card that was either mailed to them or provided to them by their employer or transit benefit administrator. This card is linked to a Ventra account that has already been created and where pre-tax transit funds are deposited.
This deadline does not affect all other Chicago Card Plus customers who do not participate in an employer-sponsored pre-tax transit benefit plan. Those Chicago Card Plus customers can use their cards until June 1 and reload them until May 1 (see full transition schedule below). 
Employees participating in pre-tax transit benefit programs should have received Ventra cards and activation instructions from their employers or transit benefit administrators by now. If any transit benefit employee has not yet received a Ventra Card in the mail or from their employer, they should contact their transit benefit administrator or human resources immediately.
Currently, 82 percent of all CTA riders are currently using Ventra. A phased transition to Ventra is planned with three major milestones leading to the system wide conversion to Ventra:
  • May 1—Customers can no longer buy magnetic stripe cards or autoload/reload Chicago Card/Chicago Card Plus
  • June 1—Customers can no longer reload magnetic stripe cards or use Chicago Card/Chicago Card Plus
  • July 1—Customers can no longer use magnetic stripe cards. Pace customers with cash will no longer be issued a Transfer Card. All customers will be transitioned to Ventra.
More information about Ventra can be found at VentraChicago.com.
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