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Ventra App

Frequently Asked Questions

Is there a surcharge if I buy a ticket in the Ventra App?

No – buying a Metra mobile ticket costs the same as a paper ticket at a ticket window or from a machine.

Can I use the Ventra App to buy Metra mobile tickets without creating a Ventra account?

Yes. But we highly recommend you create an account. It’s free and it’s easy. And creating an account allows you to take full advantage of all the app’s features. It allows you to store your credit or debit cards, or pre-tax transit benefits debit card, so you don’t have to enter the information every time you buy a Metra mobile ticket. It also allows you to split your payment between two cards – very handy for those who use a pre-tax transit benefits debit card that does not fully cover the cost of a Monthly Pass. It allows you to recover your tickets if your phone is lost, stolen, damaged or replaced. It will let you add a Link-Up or PlusBus pass to your Monthly Pass. And if you have a Ventra card, it allows you to check your balance, add value, add passes, get account notifications and more. You can even store your favorite train and bus routes for quick access to transit tracker information.

Can I use the Ventra App to buy Metra mobile tickets even if I don’t have a debit or credit card to pay with?

Yes. If you’ve created a Ventra account and registered a Ventra card, you can log in and use transit value from that card’s transit account to buy a Metra mobile ticket. You can load value with cash at any Ventra vending machine or at any of about 1,300 retail locations around town, including most currency exchanges and drugstores.

How do I use a mobile ticket in the Ventra App on board a Metra train?

When you board your train, select “My Metra Tickets” in the Ventra App and tap the ticket you’d like to use. You’ll be prompted to confirm that you want to use your ticket. Then show your mobile ticket to the conductor when the conductor is checking for tickets. He or she will ask you to touch the screen; when you do the colors in the animation change. This is a quick way for the conductor to visually check that the ticket is valid. If necessary, the conductor may also ask you to touch the QR code in the lower right corner of the ticket, which will enlarge the code and confirm the ticket activation and valid time. You can navigate away from the ticket and even the Ventra App and return to the “My Metra Tickets” screen to reopen your mobile ticket (it’ll appear under the “Tickets in Use” section) as many times as you need to during your ride.

How does the Ten-Ride ticket work in the Ventra App?

When you buy a Ten-Ride ticket, you’ll see a number 10 next to the ticket purchased in your “Stored Tickets” under “My Metra Tickets” – it’s almost like having a little book of 10 One-Way tickets. When you go to use one of the tickets, it’ll activate just one ticket and the rest will remain as “Stored Tickets” until you need them. Each time you activate a ticket the number will count down, that way you’ll always know how many rides you have left.

Can more than one person travel on a mobile 10-Ride Ticket?

Sure. Just activate as many tickets as you need and be prepared to show each individual activated ticket to your conductor.

Why can’t I buy a monthly ticket?

You can, but only between the 20th of the preceding month to the 5th of the month. If you are buying tickets at any other time, you will see the monthly ticket option grayed out, and won’t be able to purchase one.

What happens if I put my phone away and am asked to show my ticket again?

Metra mobile tickets stay active in the “Tickets in Use” section for a set amount of time – tickets for longer trips (as determined by the origin and destination, or zone pair) remain active longer than shorter trips. Monthly passes and weekend passes remain active for the month or weekend they are activated. If you put your phone away or leave the Ventra App to do something else, you can always go back to “My Metra Tickets” and reopen it – just look under “Tickets in Use”.

What happens if something delays my train after I’ve activated my ticket?

If you activate your ticket and something happens that delays your train, no worries. Tickets that have been recently used will remain on your phone as “Expired Tickets” for three hours after they expire and can be reopened just like other tickets. Your conductor will know whether to accept an expired ticket as valid in such circumstances.

Can I use Metra mobile tickets to ride any Metra line?

Yes! The Ventra App is accepted on all Metra trains.

Can I use the Ventra app to travel to/from Hegewisch?

No – this service is provided by the Northern Indiana Commuter Transportation District (the South Shore Line), which does not accept Metra tickets.

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