Sunday, January 28, 2024

Metra changes coming on 2/1

In case you missed the recent news, Metra has overhauled their fare structure. I grabbed one of these handouts from the train.  These changes are effective on Thursday 2/1. 

The number of fare zones is being reduced from 10 to 4. The new monthly pass from Beverly and Morgan Park to the Loop will be a reasonable $75, significantly less than the pre-pandemic cost of around $160. 

The info below is about changes related to buying tickets. There won't be ticket agents at any stations as of 2/1, only ticket machines and the Ventra app. 

If you are boarding at a station without a ticket machine and you don't use the Ventra app, you can pay cash to a conductor on board the train. If you board at LaSalle or another station with a ticket machine and you want to pay cash on the train, you will be charged a $5 surcharge, though they're waiving that in the early days of this transition. 

All ticket options (1-way, day pass, day pass 5-pack, monthly pass, Saturday/ Sunday/holiday pass, weekend pass and regional connect pass) will be available on the Ventra app. Only the 1-way and Saturday/Sunday/holiday pass will be available for cash on the train. 

Yes, they're really trying to nudge as many riders as possible to use the Ventra app. The good news is that it's pretty reliable now. I tried it in the early days and got frustrated because it crashed a lot. That rarely happens now.

They're also allowing bikes on all Metra trains now and they're starting to increase capacity for carrying bikes. Click here for more info.

The new fare zone map is below. If you want to see a bigger version, click on the map to go to a bigger version on the Metra web site.

No comments: