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riding metra

Alternate Service Schedules
First Published - 03/19/2020 - 11:56AM

Metra will begin operating an alternate weekday schedule on Monday, March 23, to adjust for the reduced number of riders due to school closures, work-from-home mandates and other consequences of the coronavirus pandemic. The alternate schedules can be viewed here. There will be changes for every line except the Heritage Corridor, which will operate its normal schedule. Where we are able to, we will maintain the number of cars on trains to allow for social distancing. On a line-by-line basis, Metra is monitoring ridership and may further reduce service to meet the ridership demands. The reduced schedules will remain in effect until health officials deem the crisis has passed and/or ridership begins to return to normal. Metra will operate on regular weekend schedules. Please use the Ventra app to purchase tickets. The app can be downloaded free from the App Store or Google Play.

Last Updated - 04/01/2020 - 2:59PM

Metra's Wi-Fi Program

Metra offers free Wi-Fi in the waiting areas of all of its downtown stations and on a small number of railcars spread across our 11 lines.

The 62 railcars that have Wi-Fi hotspots can be identified with an orange Wi-Fi decal on the exterior of the car. In general, the hotspots are limited to a 1 megabyte per second download speed per user. Checking email and Internet browsing are the intended uses of this service, not streaming video.

To access the free Wi-Fi service, select “Metra Wi-Fi Onboard” from the list of options on your smartphone, tablet or laptop computer. Once selected, you must agree to the terms and conditions to gain access to the service. If you have trouble connecting to the onboard Wi-Fi, please use our Contact Us form and tell us the car number so we can investigate and repair the problem.

Metra investigated offering a more robust Wi-Fi service on all cars, but the estimated $72 million upfront cost was prohibitive and agency could not identify a partner that could reliably provide that level of funding.  A subsequent test of the hotspot technology and survey of users demonstrated that it could provide basic, free and dependable internet access to customers at an affordable cost to Metra.

In addition to free Wi-Fi in the waiting areas of all five downtown stations, Metra also offers stations for customers to charge their phones and other devices.

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