Chicago's public transportation saves time, money, and stress. If you are planning on visiting the city, you'll appreciate the convenience, which will make your visit much easier - so please leave your car at home!
Your public transportation options include the Transit systems, suburban buses, commuter Metra and Amtrak trains, tourist trolleys, water taxis, land taxis, rental cars, and of course walking.
Chicago is the third largest city is the United States, so walking everywhere will take a lot of energy and a lot of time even with many of the attractions and things to do being close together. Because of this, I would recommend that you take advantage of taxis because they will save a lot of time and energy (Energy that should be used for the attractions!)
Do you have any questions about getting around Chicago? Check out our Q&A section at the bottom of the page.
Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) - The CTA operates the second largest public transportation system in the U.S. next to New York. The CTA operates 24 hours a day and is the public transportation option used by most visitors to the city. Don't forget to check out the Visitors Weekly Pass that will save you some money.
Suburban Buses - If you are a Chicago tourist or visitor, check out the primarily-suburban bus service that is operated by Pace. All Pace buses are wheelchair accessible and have racks that can hold two bicycles.
Metra Trains - The Metra trains operate eleven commuter rail lines and are the main source of transportation for many daliy commuters to Chicago. Unlike the CTA trains, fare pricing is based on zones instead of a flat boarding fee. Also, because Metra trains are mainly a commuter rail service, frequent service is really only given during the rush hours.
Amtrak Inter-City Trains - Inter-city train transportation is an fast and easy way to get around the city. Amtrak owns and operates Union Station, which is the major passenger rail hub in the city.
Soldier Field Express - You can get to Solider Field from Chicago many different ways, but the easiest would have to be taking the Soldier Field Express. Buses leave stations starting 2 hours before game time between Ogilvie Transportation Ctr., Union Station & Soldier Field, until 30 minutes after kickoff. Special cash fare $1 adults / $0.50 children. For more information check their web site.
Bicycling - Riding your bike in the city is becoming more popular as time goes on and there are many great bike paths along the lake and of course downtown. Bikes are not allowed on CTA buses during all operating hours, and on CTA trains every weekday except from 7:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. On the weekends and holidays, bikes are allowed on tains all day.
Chicago Taxis - Taxis are everywhere in Chicago, and they provide service around the city and to the nearby towns/cities. If you plan on using the taxis as a main source of transportation when you’re in the city, make sure you have enough money because the cost add up quick.
Water Taxis - Enjoy the many great views of the city from the water as well as some of the fastest public transportation in Chicago. Chicago water taxis take passengers back and forth along the Chicago River with many stops such as Navy Pier, Michigan Avenue, Adams Street, and other stops.
Driving in Chicago - If you were thinking about bringing your car on your visit to Chicago, I would consider doing so only if you really need to. Our narrow winding streets filled with people walking everywhere, the high costs of parking, and of course, all the "crazy drivers" that can be found all over the city will just waste time.
Parking? - If you do deicide to bring your car to the city, parking can be a challenge. Parking garages are everywhere, however, they can cost a fortune before you know it, and parking meters can be hard to come by and still cost a small fortune if you do manage to find a free one.
Chicago Car Rentals - If you're flying into Chicago, car rentals can be found at the airport if you plan on using the car everyday during your visit, or you can just rent a car for the times when you require it, both ways work fine.
City Maps - When visiting Chicago and using our public transportation, you'll need a GPS or some other kind of map to get your bearings, so you can find the places you need to get to. There are many great maps that you kind find online such as Mapquest, but throughout the city, there are many places where you can pick up maps that point out key locations to make finding where you need to go much easier.
If you have any questions that deal with the public transportation in Chicago, if you should rent a car or not, where you can go to park your car, or anything else about getting around Chicago, ask me, and I'll will do the best to answer your question.
Before you take the time to write out your question, check out what others have asked because I might have already answered the question you were going to ask.
When you are asking your question, please fill out as much of the form as possible, including lines for name and location.
Finally, after you send your question, you'll see a thank you page that asks you to set notification options. I resommend you do this because then you will be notified when I replay.
Thanks for questions, and I hope you enjoy your visit to Chicago!