Next stage of CTA card phase out begins today

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CTA and Pace riders are in for more changes today as current passes continue to get phased out for the new Ventra cards.

As transition continues, the complaints and confusion surrounding Ventra pile on.

Starting October 7th, rail stations will stop selling magnetic stripe passes.

Also, commuters with Chicago Card passes won’t be able to reload money onto their cards.

This is the next step of the Ventra transition.  Since the public rollout of the card on September 9th, riders have noted problems with the new machines and trying to load money onto the new cards.  They say phone calls to the helpline often go unanswered and new cards aren’t arriving in the mail as promised.

CTA says it plans to have extra personnel on hand over the next two weeks to help customers transition.

The key points to remember:

  • Chicago Card and Chicago Card Plus passes will no longer work after November 15th.
  • Magnetic stripe cards will stop working on December 15th.
  • If you have a balance left on those cars when they expire, you can get it transferred but you have to do that by March 31 or you’ll lose the money.

To see the transition dates for all CTA and Pace cards, log on to

To view all neighborhood informational meetings (where you can also transfer balance from current card to Ventra) log on to

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  • ClrmontWhistleBlower

    Worst part is they're trying to force it on us ahead of schedule!
    This past weekend I was in the Western Brown Line station.
    Saw the lone remaining magnetic card machine was "out of order"…as usual.
    Went over to it, flipped up the "out of order" tag on the card slot and inserted my card.
    It accepted it!
    Put a quarter in.
    It accepted it!
    Put a couple of $1 bills in.
    It accepted it!
    The attendant ran over, saying "It's out of order! Don't use it!"
    I asked, "Why not?", while getting my now-loaded magnetic-stripe card out.
    Her: "Because it's not working!"
    Me: "I just put money on my card!"
    Her: "I don't care! It's NOT WORKING!"
    When the next person behind me moved towards the machine, she blocked it with her body, saying "It's not working! Use the Ventra!"

  • CTAsux

    It's a $$$ grab people – plain and simple

    I see massive class-action lawsuits coming – but – if you call the CTA they also tell you that the problem is with the user; like 'tapping' your card on the reader and not getting a 'green go' – the 'attendant' then asks you to tap again – still nothing – huh? only to find out each time you have 'tapped' a full fare was deducted from your card

    …and who is going to be retarded enough to use this POC system like a debit card? have you read (or has anyone in the so called media reported on) the extensive fees charged?

    this is pure and simple a direct attack on the poor – and the worker who depends on 'public service' to make it into work

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