Ventra transition to increase costs for social service agencies

Posted on: January 22nd, 2014

Many social service agencies in the Chicagoland area offer transportation support to the people they work with, typically in the form of single-ride tickets. With the transition to Ventra, these organizations face a steep price increase that will result in fewer people being able to receive assistance.

From the Chicago Tribune:

“Without a reprieve, the new choices will be to buy:

•$3 Ventra single-ride paper tickets, representing a 33 percent increase over the $2.25 fare on the CTA rail system and on buses when payment is made with cash.

•Multiday passes, which are used far less by the agencies than are the single-ride tickets they purchase in bulk orders. (There is no price break on bulk sales, either before Ventra or currently.)

•$5 Ventra transit smart cards, which don’t suit the needs of many of the agencies and their customers, officials said.

The shortcomings include that to receive $5 in transit credits in exchange for the $5 paid for the Ventra smart card, the user must register the card and include a permanent address, phone number and email address. It’s an unlikely scenario for many social service clients, experts said. And if cards are lost, a $5 replacement fee is charged.”

The price change for single-ride tickets represents a 33% increase over current magnetic-stripe tickets.

Read more at the Chicago Tribune.

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