Go mobile with Metra, CTA, Pace, and the Ventra app.
The Ventra app is a safe and convenient way to buy and display Metra tickets on your smartphone with a credit or debit card or a Ventra account. Download the app for free from the Apple App Store or Google Play. Then use it to buy any kind of Metra ticket on the go, anytime, anywhere. You can skip the ticket window and show your mobile ticket to the conductor whenever you ride Metra. It’s like having a Metra ticket vending machine in your pocket.
The upgrade has a simplified user interface and dashboard for train or bus tracking and account management. For Metra customers, the other highlights include:
- You can easily summon your Metra pass from the home screen.
- If you need a new pass or ticket, you can quickly choose to reorder based on your most recent purchases.
- If you upgrade to a new device, you can move your tickets to the new device yourself, rather than having to go through Ventra customer service.
- The app has a new fare product exclusive to the app – the "Round Trip Plus," which allows for unlimited daily travel between the fare zones selected for the price of two one-way tickets.
- The new app also gives you quick access to one of its key new features – an integrated trip planning tool to help you find your way across the Chicago area on Metra, the CTA or Pace. Click here for a video on how to use that feature.
- If you want to rent a bike, you can see how many bikes are available at the nearest Divvy station.
We tried to make the transition to the upgraded app as smooth and painless as possible. Here’s how it works:
- If you have automatic app updates enabled on your device, the Ventra app will automatically update on your phone. You’ll know your Ventra app has been updated if the Ventra icon on your device has changed from white to blue.
- If you don’t have automatic updates enabled, you’ll have to download the new version from the App Store or Google Play.
Once you have the new (blue icon) version on your phone:
- Log in with your existing Ventra username and password to view your transit value and passes and retrieve your Metra mobile tickets. (Click the following to retrieve your username or password from the Ventra website.)
- Follow the prompts when first logging in to retrieve your Metra tickets, or select "Tickets" in the bottom right corner of the home screen and then select "Move tickets to this device" and your existing tickets will automatically download to your phone.
- To ensure your tickets are ready when you’re on the go, we recommend transferring your tickets prior to your commute.
If you have an Android 6 or older or iOS 9 or older operating system, you won’t be able to update to the new Ventra app (blue icon) because it will not work with those older systems. In addition, the old version (white icon) will be phased out by the end of the year. If you can’t upgrade to a new device or newer operating system, please see the important information here.
Using the Ventra app is easy
To buy and use a Metra mobile ticket directly from your smartphone, you must first create an account in the app. Then:
- Select “Purchase a Metra ticket” from the home screen.
- Select your line, departure station, destination station and type of ticket.
- Select "Go to checkout" and verify your purchase and payment method, then select "Purchase."
- Your mobile ticket appears under “Metra Tickets on this device" on the home screen and on the "Tickets" screen.
- Board your train and activate your ticket by selecting "Use."
Show the mobile ticket on your smartphone to the conductor when they come around, and tap the screen.
Tips for using Metra mobile tickets
- Buy your ticket before you head to the train. This way, you can be sure you’ve got a ticket to use when you get to the train and are ready when the train crew checks your ticket – even if you’re boarding in a place where your mobile carrier doesn’t offer a good signal.
- Activate your ticket after you board. Purchased tickets appear in the "Metra Tickets" section of the home screen. Activate the ticket there by selecting "Use." It’s immediately active and will be valid only for the length of your ride, so don’t do this before you get on the train. The crew will ask you to show them the activated ticket on your phone's screen and then tap the screen; when you do, a pattern will appear over the ticket that will verify that the ticket is valid. If you navigate away from the ticket or the app, you can quickly show it again by tapping "Show" in the "Metra Tickets" section of the home screen.
- Make sure your device is charged. You’ll need to be able to show your ticket when asked by a train crew member at any point during your ride.