Metra is extending its popular weekend Family Fares program to weekdays from Dec. 24 through Jan. 4, making it easy for families to enjoy the season without the hassle of driving. That means up to three children aged 11 and under can ride for free with each adult during this period.
“We want to make it as easy and stress free as possible for families to experience the magic of the holiday season,” said Metra CEO/Executive Director Jim Derwinski. “Leave the driving to us and let one of our safe, comfortable, reliable and cost-effective trains take you to your holiday destination.”
Metra is making travel during the holiday period even more affordable by offering special $10 unlimited ride holiday passes to include Dec. 24-Dec. 25 and Dec. 31-Jan. 1. Tickets can be purchased on board, from a station agent, or on the Ventra App, available for free in the App Store or Google Play.
Making Your Metra Journey Easy
Metra offers the following tips for families traveling with children:
• Purchase your ticket in advance: Download the Ventra App and purchase your ticket with your smartphone from home. Tickets can also be purchased at the station (cash or credit) or on the train (cash only) if an agent is not on duty.
• Plan ahead: Check Metra’s website, metrarail.com, or the Ventra App to research schedules and to plan your trip. Remember to allow yourself a few extra minutes before your train departs if you need to find and pay for parking.
• Pick the best family travel times: Travel in the off-peak hours, outside the traditional morning and evening rush periods. This is when more seating is available, making it easier to find multiple seats together for your family and your belongings.
• Stow your stroller: Metra’s ADA-accessible cars, the ones that display the wheelchair logo next to the boarding doors, provide the most room if you need to stow a stroller.
• Learn where the best bathroom is: The ADA-accessible cars also have roomy bathrooms that will allow you to assist your young adventurer should it be necessary.
• Skip the Quiet Car: If you do find yourself traveling during rush hours, Metra recommends that you avoid sitting in the designated Quiet Cars. Talking and cell phone use are discouraged on Quiet Cars so it’s probably not the best place to enjoy a train trip with your children. Quiet Cars are clearly marked as such on the exterior and interior so they should be easy to spot.
• If you need help, call us: Call our customer service number, 312-322-6777, weekdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. with any questions about train schedules and service. In the evening and on weekends, call the RTA Travel Information Center at 312-836-7000. Calls are answered from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday.
• Don't forget your stuff: Before leaving the train, don't forget to take a look around to see if you've left anything behind. It happens every day to even our most veteran customers. Each downtown station has a Lost and Found office or you can call to inquire if something was lost. Don't fret – you'll be surprised how many lost items are returned to their owners.