Ventra App: My Ventra Cards

The My Ventra Cards section of the app lets you manage your Ventra transit accounts. Any Ventra Card you register appears here when you’re signed into your Ventra online account.

What’s a “Ventra transit account”?


Every Ventra Card comes with a transit account, and this is where transit value (money) and passes are stored for use on CTA buses and trains.

When you tap your card, fare is deducted from (or a pass-covered ride is taken) based on what you've loaded into your transit account.

When you register a Ventra Card, your card’s transit account and related info appears when you sign into the app or online. Once registered, your card is protected against loss or theft and when it expires we can send you a new one, for free.

Also, if you register within 90 days of purchasing your card, the $5 cost of the new card is returned to you as transit value that you can spend on CTA, Pace or Metra.

Learn more about Ventra Cards.


Viewing your account info

When you go to My Ventra Cards, you’ll see transit value stored in your account and any passes that are active or in-queue (loaded and ready to be used).

You’ll also see whether autoload is enabled for your account.


Managing multiple cards

If you’ve registered more than one card to your Ventra online account, you’ll see arrows at the top My Ventra Cards that let you switch between cards. Just tap the left and right arrows to jump between them.

You can tell which card is which by the nickname shown for each card, as well as the last four digits of that card.

If you do have multiple cards registered, make sure you’re loading value or passes to the correct card when you do so.


Loading Ventra transit value

Transit value is money you load into your Ventra 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 hundreds of retailers (including most drugstores and currency exchanges and lots of neighborhood shops).

You can also apply transit value you’ve loaded toward the purchase of a pass or to buy a Metra mobile ticket in the app.

Learn about using transit value to ride CTA & Pace.
Learn about using transit value to buy Metra tickets in the app.


VentraApp_AddPassesLoading CTA & Pace passes

You can also load CTA & Pace passes to your Ventra transit account. Passes both are good for unlimited rides, for one person, for the length of a pass.

When you load a pass into your account, it’ll be activated when it’s needed to cover your fare.

Active passes get used up first, so you can add additional passes to your “pass queue”, where 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), see this featured question.

Learn about using passes to ride CTA & Pace.



Autoload is a feature that lets you subscribe to automatically have more value or passes loaded into your transit account when you run low on value or when a pass you're using is nearing expiration.

You can set up autoload for value or individual pass types (where available for that pass) as you like.

To enable autoload in the app, simply switch it on for value or eligible passes.

  • 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 also be switched off at any time online or right in the app.

Learn more about autoload.




Frequently Asked Questions

Managing Ventra Cards in the App

Paying in the App


Questions And Answers

Managing Ventra Cards in the App

What’s a Ventra “pass”?

Passes let you have unlimited rides during a given period of time. For example, a CTA 3-Day Pass allows you to ride as much as you like for three days starting the next time you ride CTA.

When you load a pass, your next eligible ride will be covered by the pass and it’ll be activated.

Passes only cover the first rider, so if you’re also paying for others traveling with you, note that their fares will be deducted from transit value.

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How up-to-date is my balance in the My Ventra Cards part of the app?

The balance shown in the app (after it refreshes) is the latest available balance in your Ventra transit account.

If you just took a ride a few seconds ago, this might not be reflected in your balance right away—but once your ride gets up to our servers and your fare is calculated, you’ll see your updated balance in the app instantly.

When you load value or passes in the app, these both appear and are available for use right away.

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If I have insufficient fare to ride or a negative balance, how quickly can I correct this within the app?

If you load enough value to correct a negative balance in the app, this value becomes available for use right away and your card will start working again.

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If I load value or a pass in the app, how quickly is it available for use?

Value and passes you load in the app are available for use immediately on CTA and Pace—just like at a vending machine.

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I have a U-Pass. Can I use the app?

Absolutely. You can register your U-Pass in the app or at and manage your fare in the app—including to check your balance, add value, load passes and control autoload, just like anyone else with a Ventra Card.

Remember, outside of school terms where you're enrolled full time, your U-Pass will need to have fare or regular passes added to keep riding, since regular fares are charged off-season. You can even set up autoload so you've always got backup fare for when school goes out of session.

And remember, you can also use the app to buy and use Metra mobile tickets, too!

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I have a reduced fare card. Can I use the app?

Yes! You can register your card in the app or at and manage your fare in the app—including to check your balance, add value, load passes and control autoload, just like anyone else with a Ventra Card.

And remember, you can also use the app to buy and use Metra mobile tickets, too! Just remember that you'll still need credentials to show that you are eligible for a reduced fare when you go to use a reduced fare mobile ticket on Metra trains.

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Paying in the App

How do I add a credit or debit card in the app?

If you're signed in, you can add payment cards by going to My Account from the app's main menu. You can also add payment methods on—they'll automatically appear in the app.

If you haven't done this in advance of trying to make a purchase in the app, you can also add one as part of the checkout process. The card will be stored in your account once you've completed the transaction.

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How do I use pre-tax transit benefit money through work for use in the app?

You set up pre-tax Transit Benefits through your employer, if they offer it. (If they don't, tell them you'd like it!)

There are two ways to use transit benefit money with the app:

  1. Have it delivered to a Ventra Card's transit account: If you can have money delivered to a Ventra Card's transit account, set this up to have transit benefit value automatically appear. This money can cover fares paid with a Ventra Card on CTA and Pace and can also be used as a funding source when you buy a CTA or Pace pass or Metra mobile ticket right from within the app.

    If you don't have enough benefit value to cover your pass purchase or a monthly Metra mobile ticket purchase, you can choose "split payment" to split the difference between your transit benefit value and another payment method.
  2. Use a prepaid transit benefit debit card as your payment method: If you've been issued a special transit-only debit card to where your benefit money is loaded, you can set up that debit card as a funding source in the app to pay for transit.

You can also split payments between two credit/debit cards in the app, so if the maximum benefit value is less than a Metra mobile ticket you wish to purchase, you can cover your purchase with two payments.

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