CTA Waives Chicago Card Purchasing Fee During September and October

August 31, 2007

CTA is waiving the $5 purchasing fee for Chicago Card and Chicago Card Plus from September 1 to October 31 to encourage customers to switch to electronic fare media. The Chicago Transit Board approved a fee waiver period in light of the pending fare increase and service reductions scheduled to go into effect Sunday, September 16 should the CTA not receive funding from the Illinois General Assembly.

"Customers who use the electronic fare media save time and money through speedier boarding times and lower fares," said CTA President Ron Huberman. "If CTA is forced to implement its contingency plan, customers using the Chicago Card or Chicago Card Plus will see a smaller increase in fares versus those customers who use cash to ride on the CTA."

Under the modified contingency plan, customers using the Chicago Card/Chicago Card Plus or the Transit Card will see an increase in bus fare to $2.00, whereas cash paying customers will pay $2.50 per ride. Rail fares will rise to $2.00 for Chicago Card/Chicago Card Plus cardholders, while fares for customers using either cash or a Transit Card will rise to $2.50 off-peak and $3.00 peak. Peak periods are 6:30-9:30 a.m. and
4:00-7:00 p.m.

Value is stored on a Chicago Card just as it is on a magnetic strip transit card, but the card offers additional features such as the option of fare balance protection and faster boarding. The Chicago Card, and its account-based counterpart Chicago Card Plus, resemble credit cards and enable customers to simply use the ?Touch N Go? pads on bus fareboxes and rail turnstiles, and go. The extra seconds saved for each customer makes travel even more efficient as those seconds add up and shave time off the boarding process for everyone.

Customers can purchase the cards at more than 200 non-CTA outlets such as Currency Exchanges, Jewel-Osco, CVS and Dominick's Finer Food stores, which already provide other types of CTA fare media. Customers also may purchase fare media at CTA's main office at 567 West Lake Street from
8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., via mail, online at CTA's web site or by calling CTA Customer Service at 1-888-968-7282 (1-888 YOUR CTA).

Information on where to purchase CTA fare media and where customers may add value to Chicago Cards is available on the fares page of CTA's web site at www.transitchicago.com.

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