Manage your Ventra Cards
The Ventra Cards section is where you can see the balance and passes loaded into your registered Ventra Card’s (or Cards’) transit account(s) and manage your fare by instantly adding more fare or passes. You can also view your ride and transaction history. Need a card?
Viewing your account info
Go to My Ventra Cards to see your stored transit value and any passes that are active or in queue (a pass in queue will activate automatically the first time it’s needed to cover a fare).
You’ll also enable autoload for transit value and/or passes.
Setting up Ventra Card on iPhone or Apple Watch
Ventra Card in Apple Wallet brings all the features of a Ventra Card to your iPhone or Apple Watch. Customers can add an existing, registered plastic Ventra Card to iPhone or Apple Watch or create new Ventra Cards for Apple Wallet through the app. Unregistered Ventra Cards (purchased from a machine or retail location without having been registered) will need to be registered online, by phone or in the app first before you can add it to your iPhone or Apple Watch. If you don’t have a registered Ventra Card, you can use the Ventra app to add a new Ventra Card on iPhone and Apple Watch, which will automatically be registered to your Ventra online account.
To set up a Ventra Card follow these easy steps:
Transfer existing, plastic Ventra Card to iPhone or Apple Watch (Registered, Full Fare & O’Hare Employee cards):
- Open the Ventra App on your iPhone or Apple Watch and tap the Cards section.
- Select the Ventra Card you want to add.
- Press the Add to Apple Wallet button and follow instructions in the app to add Ventra Card to your iPhone or your Apple Watch.
- Cut up and throw away your old, plastic card - it'll no longer be valid once added to your Apple Wallet.
Purchase a new Ventra Card via the Ventra app:
- In the new Ventra app, sign in or create an account.
- In the Cards section, select the icon (a card with plus sign in the upper right corner of the screen).
- Select Add Ventra Card to Apple Wallet and follow the prompts to add a pass or transit value. You will need to add at least $5 worth of transit value or pass.
- Press Add to Apple Wallet to finish.
The first Ventra Card added to Apple Wallet on any iPhone or Apple Watch will automatically have Express Transit enabled. This feature allows you to tap your iPhone or Apple Watch to a Ventra fare reader without having to unlock it first.
A Ventra Card in Apple Wallet can’t be loaded onto more than one device at a time—load it only to the iPhone or Apple Watch you wish to use whenever you ride.
Managing multiple cards and setting a default
If you’ve registered more than one card to your Ventra online account, you’ll see multiple cards at the top of your Ventra Cards screen, and you can switch between them by swiping or tapping the next/previous card in the sequence on screen.
You can differentiate cards by the individual nickname, as well as the last four digits of each card. (To edit a card’s nickname, log into the Ventra website with the same username and password you use for the app.)
If you have multiple cards registered to your account, pay close attention to be sure you’re loading value or passes to the correct Ventra Card.
Setting your default/home screen Ventra Card
Your oldest registered Ventra Card will show as your “Default Ventra Card” (just above the card nickname) when you first log into the new app.
If you wish to set a different card as your default card, simply set it as your default (which appears as an option toward the bottom of the screen while looking at your card's info in the Ventra Cards section of the app).
This is an in-app setting, so it won’t affect other users with whom you share your account or the Ventra website when you log in.
Loading Ventra transit value
Transit value is money you load into your Ventra Card’s transit account. Regular fares and transfers are deducted from this value when you use your card to ride CTA and Pace.
Transit value can be loaded online, in person at vending machines and at more than 1,000 Ventra retail partners (including drugstores, currency exchanges and many neighborhood shops).
In addition to paying for individual fares, transit value you’ve loaded can be applied toward the purchase of a CTA/Pace pass or to buy a Metra mobile ticket in the app.
Loading CTA & Pace passes
CTA & Pace passes can be loaded onto your Ventra Card’s transit account. Both passes are good for unlimited rides for one rider for the exact duration of the pass.
When you load a pass into your account, it’ll go into your pass queue and won’t be activated until it’s needed to cover your fare. The pass becomes active as soon as it’s needed to pay for a ride—not the moment you buy it.
Active passes are used first, so you are able to add additional passes to your “pass queue,” and know they’ll be held until needed to cover your fare. This way, you can buy a pass before you need it.
To learn more about the order in which passes are activated (in the event you have more than one kind of pass loaded), click the link below:
Automatically have value or passes loaded into your transit account when it’s low on value or when a pass you're using is nearing expiration by activating the Autoload feature.
Autoload can be set up for value or individual pass types (where available for that pass).
To enable autoload, simply switch it on for transit value or eligible passes in the app.
- If autoload is enabled for transit value: Any time your remaining value dips below $10, more value will be loaded automatically from your Autoload funding source.
- If autoload is enabled on a pass: Any time that pass in your account has been activated and comes within 3 days of expiring, and no others of that kind are in your pass queue, another will be loaded.
Autoload for value or passes can be switched off at any time in the app or online.
Have a Ventra Card but don’t see it when you log in?
Only Ventra Cards you’ve registered will appear in the app or on the website when you log in. If you have a card that's never been registered, you can add it to your account in order to manage your fare and check your balance in the app or on the website. Be sure to keep your plastic card, as you'll still need to touch the actual card to the reader to ride.
On the new Ventra app:
- Go to the Cards section.
- Tap the “Add Card” icon (a card with a plus sign on it) in the upper right.
- Fill in the necessary information.
Online, go to VentraChicago.com (you’ll need to log into the same account you use in the app or create a new one that you’ll use with the app).
Your card will appear within a few minutes in the app, at which time you’ll be able to check your balance, add transit fare and/or a pass, and use all the app’s other account management features.
Need a Ventra Card or ticket to ride CTA or Pace?
If you don’t have a Ventra Card or Ventra Ticket, they're easy to get and you have easy purchase options, too!
Buying a Ventra Card:
- Use the Ventra app to create a new Ventra Card on iPhone or Apple Watch.
- Visit a Ventra Vending Machine at any CTA 'L' station or select regional locations, such as certain commuter rail stations and suburban bus terminals.
- Visit any of hundreds of Ventra retailers around town, including many drugstores, supermarkets, neighborhood convenience stores and check cashing/currency exchange businesses.
- Order a Ventra Card by mail, with fare or a pass already loaded to its account, from the Ventra website.
Riding without a Ventra Card: You can also use limited-use tickets bought from Ventra Vending Machines for single rides and one-day passes, or pay a PAYG fare using a contactless bankcard or credit/debit card loaded into a smartphone pay app's wallet.
Learn more about how to get a Ventra Card and other payment options for riding CTA and Pace