Subway Guide – Chicago
Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) http://www.transitchicago.com/
The “L” network is composed of 8 lines. Each line has a specific color, which makes it easy to recognize on the map.
- The red line goes from North to South and connects the two sides of the city.
- The blue line starts from the O’Hare International Airport (Northwest), heads downtown (the Loop) and then heads southwest by dividing itself in two.
- The brown line starts from the Loop and heads northwest.
- The green line links the west neighborhoods of Chicago to downtown and heads south.
- The orange line starts from the Loop and heads trough Chinatown to the southwest neighborhoods.
- The pink line goes through the Loop and heads to the west of the city.
- The purple line is an underground express line that links downtown with the distant neighborhoods of the north.
- The yellow line heads to the western side of the city.
All the lines go downtown through the Loop either underground or on the famous elevated tracks. The frequency is rather good with an average of a train every 10 minutes.
Only the Blue and Red lines have a 24 hours service. The other lines stop between 1:00 am and 4:00 am. The Yellow line stops between 11:00 pm and 5:00 am. For more details, check the schedules pages of CTA: http://www.transitchicago.com/travel_information/schedules.aspx“>http://www.transitchicago.com/travel_information/schedules.aspx
For a full chart of the fares, check the CTA website on http://www.transitchicago.com/travel_information/fares/fullschedule.aspx
The fare for the L is $2.25, the first transfer costs 25 cents, and the second one is free. You can buy tickets:
- At vending machines at L stations. There you can buy CTA Pass (3-Day, 7-Day, and 7-Day CTA/Pace passes), Transit Cards and Chicago Cards. You can also add value to both Transit Cards and Chicago Cards.
- At the CTA Headquarters located 567 W Lake St (2nd Floor Sales Center). There you can buy fare cards (Transit Cards and Passes) and get Chicago Card or Chicago Card Plus.
- At the Currency Exchange stores located all around the city but mainly downtown.
- At the CTA online store: http://faremedia.chicago-card.com/
If you use a Chicago card, Chicago Card Plus or Transit Cards and transfer between buses and trains, you will be automatically charged the transfer fee when you use your card to transfer. You do not need to pay for the transfer on the first part of your trip.
Maps and Schedules
- All the CTA maps for the “L” network: http://www.transitchicago.com/travel_information/maps/default.aspx.
- All the CTA schedules for the “L” network: http://www.transitchicago.com/travel_information/schedules.aspx
Special seats are kept for elderly, veterans, pregnant women, etc… You can use them but as soon as it is needed by someone, you should move. Make sure to keep the trains clean; do not let used newspapers or any garbage on your seat.