CTA to Offer New Keepsake Bank of America Chicago Marathon Ventra Card

September 11, 2017

For runners and running fans, CTA will begin selling reloadable commemorative cards starting today; CTA will also offer commemorative single-ride, 1-day and 3-day disposable tickets

For the first time ever, the Chicago Transit Authority will offer a special Bank of America Chicago Marathon commemorative reloadable Ventra card. This special card is available for purchase online beginning today and enables runners and running fans to load transit value or unlimited-ride passes on their very own special keepsake fare card.

Whether you’re running the Bank of America Chicago Marathon or cheering on your family and friends on Sunday, Oct. 8, CTA is the best way to get to the action and enjoy this world-famous race, which is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year.

Even better, you can use your reloadable Bank of America Chicago Marathon Ventra card to ride CTA to the start line or to the best spectating locations on Sunday, Oct. 8, around the city, from Clark/Division (Red Line) near Mile 4 to 18th Street Station (Pink Line) at Mile 19 to the finish line east of CTA’s Roosevelt Station (Red, Orange, Green lines). Best of all, you can keep using your reusable keepsake card long after the last runner has crossed the finish line.

Customers can begin ordering the commemorative marathon Ventra cards starting today at www.ventranow.com/marathon preloaded with either a 3-day or 7-day pass, or $20 in transit value. The Ventra cards will be shipped to their homes (in the U.S. only) so that runners and spectators have them in hand before traveling to Chicago for the big race.

Customers who want to have their marathon Ventra cards shipped must order them online before Friday, Sept. 22. Customers who want to pick up their cards at designated will call locations have until Tuesday, Oct. 3 to place their online order. Like a standard reusable Ventra card, the initial cost of the keepsake marathon card is $5, which is returned as transit value once the card is registered online within 90 days of purchase. 

As in prior years, CTA will also sell disposable commemorative single-ride or 1-day pass tickets. These will be available at Ventra vending machines at select rail stations closer to Oct. 8. 

Marathon attendees will be able to purchase the keepsake reloadable Ventra card, as well as commemorative single-ride, 1-day and 3-day disposable tickets, at the Abbott Health & Fitness Expo on Friday, Oct. 6 and Saturday, Oct. 7 at McCormick Place. CTA will have a booth available to provide travel information and transit tips.

Commemorative reloadable Ventra cards, as well as disposable single-ride, 1-day and 3-day tickets can also be purchased from fare sales tables staffed by CTA employees at the O’Hare Blue Line Terminal and the Midway Orange Line Terminal from Thursday, Oct. 5 to Saturday, Oct. 7.  On the day of the Chicago Marathon, Sunday, Oct. 8, CTA will have extra staff at several rail stations and bus stops across the system to help customers with travel information and fares.

Plan ahead
CTA recommends allowing plenty of travel time and purchasing fares and unlimited-ride passes well in advance to avoid long lines at the airports and on race day.

Customers can add unlimited ride passes (1-day, 3-day, 7-day and 30-day) or add money to pay per-ride to their Ventra cards ahead of time via the free Ventra app, at rail station vending machines, online or at more 1,000 local retailers (for locations visit ventrachicago.com or the Ventra app).

Customers can also purchase from Ventra vending machines 1-day unlimited ride tickets ($10) or single-ride tickets ($3) that include up to two transfers in two hours. Customers can also pay their fares with their personal contactless debit or credit cards.

Stay in the Loop on CTA Service
Plan your trip using the Google Transit Trip Planner. Be sure to also check out CTA on Facebook or Twitter (@CTA) for system travel updates and alerts. For details about all CTA service, call 312-836-7000 or visit the CTA website at transitchicago.com.

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