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Coronavirus information
First Published - 06/07/2020 - 2:04PM

Weekday Metra trains are operating on alternate weekday schedules posted here. Weekend trains are operating on Sunday schedules on both Saturdays and Sundays, with no weekend service on the North Central Service, Southwest Service, Heritage Corridor and the Blue Island Branch of the Metra Electric Line. Sunday schedules will also be in use on Friday, July 3. For all other information relating to Metra's response to the pandemic, click here.

Last Updated - 06/30/2020 - 3:34PM

Commute with Confidence on Metra

Metra is going the extra mile to keep you safe so you can Commute with Confidence. Click on the questions below about our handling the COVID-19 crisis to see our answers.

Riding Metra

What schedules are Metra using on weekdays?
What schedules are Metra using on weekends?
How will Metra adjust service as ridership returns?
How full will trains get?
Do I need to wear a face covering to ride the train?
Will I be able to physically distance from other passengers on the train?

Paying fares

What’s the safest way to pay my fare?
Are there any fare incentives being offered?
Is Metra doing anything to extend the validity of tickets that expired during the pandemic?
Are medical workers still allowed to ride for free?

Cleaning, sanitizing, disinfecting

What has Metra been doing to make sure the cars are clean?
Are cars disinfected every day?
Are there hand sanitizers on the trains?
What kind of air filters are used on Metra cars?
What is Metra doing to clean the stations?

Click here for a video of our cleaning efforts

Riding Metra

What schedules are Metra using on weekdays?
Metra trains on all lines are operating on alternate weekday schedules viewable here.

What schedules are Metra using on weekends?
Metra lines operating weekend service have temporarily switched to Sunday/Holiday schedules on both weekend days, including, starting July 4, on the Metra Electric Line. Saturday service will be suspended on the SouthWest Service Line and, starting July 4, on the Blue Island Branch of the Metra Electric Line (Neither line has Sunday service, and the Heritage Corridor and North Central Service do not operate on either weekend day.) The timetable for each line contains the Sunday schedules: Metra Electric   Rock Island    BNSF     UP West   Milwaukee District West    UP Northwest     Milwaukee District North    UP North

How will Metra adjust service as ridership returns?
As ridership grows, Metra will add cars to trains and add trains to the schedule to allow for passengers to physically distance as much as and as long as possible.

How full will trains be?
Metra will aim for trains that are no more than about half full: one passenger per two-seater on the lower level and one passenger per every other seat on the upper level. (There will be exceptions for families or others travelling together.)

Do I need to wear a face covering to ride the train?
Yes, please wear your mask or face covering for the entirety of the ride. Unless you are traveling with family or friends, we are asking you to physically distance as much as possible. And please stay in your seat and do not crowd the aisles or vestibules. Help us help everybody commute with confidence.

Will I be able to physically distance from other passengers on the train?
Yes, there is currently plenty of room for riders to spread out on the train and keep their distance from other customers. As ridership grows, Metra will add cars to trains and add trains to the schedule to allow for passengers to physically distance as much as and as long as possible.

Paying fares

What’s the safest way to pay my fare?
While Metra has resumed accepting cash as payment for fares at ticket windows and on trains, it strongly encourages passengers to buy their tickets with the Ventra app to limit interactions between crews and passengers. Checks are no longer accepted onboard trains.

Are there any fare incentives being offered?
Yes. Metra is now offering a $10 All-Day Pass and strongly encouraging customers to buy it in the Ventra app, giving them a “Touch Less, Pay Less” option to ride its trains safely and affordably.  All-Day Passes bought in the app expire after seven days, so don’t buy them too far in advance. The new All -Day Pass can be purchased with cash, but if you boarded at a station where an agent was available, the conductor will charge an additional $5 fee for buying it on the train. (Paper All-Day Passes can only be used on the day of sale.)

Is Metra doing anything to extend the validity of tickets that expired during the pandemic?
Yes. Metra has extended the validity of One-Way and 10-Ride tickets with expiration dates in March, April, May, June or July. Those tickets will be accepted through Labor Day. Paper tickets that expired in those months can be used on the trains until Labor Day. If you have Ventra tickets that expired in those months, please contact covid19ticketinfo@metrarr.com

Are medical workers still allowed to ride for free?
Yes, Metra is allowing doctors, nurses, EMTs, paramedics and other medical personnel on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic to ride free on Metra trains at least through the end of July. To ride free, medical personnel only need to present a work ID showing that they are employed at a hospital, doctor’s office, medical facility or local fire department to a Metra conductor.

Cleaning, sanitizing, disinfecting

What has Metra been doing to make sure the cars are clean?
Metra has spent the last few months deep cleaning its more than 1,000 railcars. It also has been studying best practices and experimenting with new cleaning methods, new cleaning solutions and new cleaning machines in a still-evolving effort to identify the most efficient and effective way to ensure cars are as safe as possible.

Are cars disinfected every day?
Yes. Metra is cleaning and disinfecting all high-touch areas (such as seats, seat handles, armrests, door handles, handrails, vestibule posts and handholds) as frequently as possible, at least once a day. It also will continue to thoroughly clean and disinfect toilets and toilet areas at least once a day.

Are there hand sanitizers on the trains?
There are already dispensers in the toilet areas. As supplies become available, Metra will be installing additional hand sanitizer dispensers on all cars this summer.

What kind of air filters are used on Metra cars?
You can breathe easy knowing Metra cars include hospital-grade filter to capture airborne particles and clean the air. Cars also have fresh air dampers that circulate the air and ventilate the cars to improve air quality and safety.

What is Metra doing to clean the stations?
We are cleaning Metra-maintained stations multiple times a week, paying special attention to disinfecting high-touch surfaces. We are also bringing in extra crews to increase the cleaning and disinfecting of downtown stations. We have also asked the municipalities or other entities that maintain the stations in their communities to do the same.


 

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