CHICAGO (CBS) — The Ventra mass transit app has passed a notable mark.
The Chicago Transit Authority, Metra and Pace announced Friday that the Ventra transit app has been downloaded more than two million times.
The transit companies said in the last 21 months the app has been available, it has been used to buy more than $250 million worth of fares.
The free app was launched by the CTA in partnership with Metra and Pace to provide riders “with a convenient one-stop shopping experience.” It was the first transit app in the nation allowing customers to pay for rides on multiple transit systems.
“The fact that the Ventra app has been downloaded more than 2 million times in less than two years demonstrates why CTA is leveraging technology to improve the transit experience for our customers,” said CTA President Dorval R. Carter, Jr. in a statement. “By making transit easier to pay for and more convenient to use, we help encourage people to take advantage of great public transit in the Chicago area.”
For CTA and Pace riders, the Ventra app can be used to add value/money to their Ventra fare cards. The app is also a transit tracker for commuters to track their buses and trains. Metra riders can buy tickets via the app and keep them on their smartphones to show to conductors. It also alerts users with real-time account notifications when it’s time to purchase new passes or refill their accounts.
Metra said more than a third of its riders use the app.
“The Ventra app has proven to be extremely popular with Metra customers in such a short time,” said Metra Executive Chairman/CEO Don Orseno, in a statement. “Already, more than a third of our customers are buying tickets through the app, making it our largest sales channel in terms of ticket sales. We’re pleased to offer such a fast and convenient app for the benefit of our riders.”
Pace Executive Director T.J. Ross. said the app has made their transit system “easier and more convenient” for its riders.
“We’re proud to be a part of the Ventra team and extend our gratitude to everyone who worked to achieve this success,” he said.
The Ventra app is free and available for download on Apple and Android smartphones via www.ventrachicago.com, the App Store and Google Play.