Metra announced Wednesday (May 22, 2019) that its Monthly Pass holders will soon be able to use their tickets for unlimited weekend travel across the Metra system.
The change, which goes into effect June 1, will allow Monthly Pass holders to travel outside the zones indicated on their passes at no additional cost on Saturdays and Sundays. Presently, only Metra’s $10 Weekend Pass can be used for unlimited travel across all fare zones.
“Monthly Pass holders are our most loyal customers,” said Metra CEO/Executive Director Jim Derwinski. “We want to encourage them to look to Metra for travel needs beyond their weekday commute. Our Weekend Pass has always allowed unlimited travel on our system and our goal is to offer the same flexibility for our most frequent customers.”
Metra riders who purchase the paper version of the Monthly Pass will only need to show it to the conductor on weekends for unlimited access to the system.
Customers who purchase electronic passes through the Ventra App will need to display their pass on their phones and then tap the QR code on the screen to show the conductor the ticket’s expiration date.
Monthly Passes are valid until noon on the first business day of the next month.
Allowing Monthly Pass holders to enjoy unlimited weekend travel on the Metra system is one of several initiatives to increase weekend and off-peak ridership. Metra has also announced the expansion of weekend service through the summer months on its BNSF, Rock Island and Union Pacific Northwest lines to test whether offering faster and more frequent service will increase weekend ridership and revenue.
Metra also encourages families to use its system for travel to summertime events and activities across the Chicago region with the expansion of its Family Fares program to weekdays.
Family Fares allow up to three children age 11 and under to ride free with a fare-paying adult. The program is in effect Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day.
Metra Offers Ride To Ravinia
Music lovers can tune out the stress of traffic and parking by taking Metra’s UP North Line to Ravinia Park’s front gate this summer.
Those planning to attend any of the concerts at the 2019 Ravinia Festival can board the UP North Line at Ogilvie Transportation Center or any other station along the line to reach the world-renowned park. As in past years, Metra is offering a special $8 round-trip pass on all trains to and from Ravinia Park after 1:30 p.m. The pass can be purchased at stations or on the train.
“Metra is the most convenient, fun and worry-free choice for anyone going to Ravinia,” said Metra CEO/Executive Director Jim Derwinski. “Leave the car behind and let Metra do the driving so you can focus on enjoying the concert.”
For weekend concerts, Metra runs a “Ravinia Special,” departing Ogilvie at 5:35 p.m. with nonstop express service after Evanston for a scheduled 6:25 p.m. arrival at the concert venue. Plus, all afternoon outbound trains departing from Chicago on the UP North also stop at Ravinia’s west gate. Due to some different weekend concert times, some modifications have been made to the UP North weekend schedule.
For weekday concerts, regularly scheduled trains provide service to the park. The 5:50, 6 and 6:44 p.m. Ogilvie departures take you right to Ravinia’s west gate. The nearby Braeside Station is an easy walk to the park, and provides concertgoers additional arrival times.
For the 2019 schedule of events, please visit ravinia.org.
SOURCE: Metra news releases