Student Services

CTA U-Pass

The University of Chicago, in conjunction with the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA), provides U-Pass cards to UChicago College students. Graduate students are not eligible to receive the CTA U-Pass. The U-Pass provides unlimited travel on CTA's bus and rail system during regular term time.

2022-23 U-Pass Activation
Quarter Start Date End Date
Autumn Quarter September 22 December 15
Winter Quarter December 29 March 16
Spring Quarter March 15 June 8

Questions? Email

More Information:

Frequently Asked Questions

    No. All College students who are enrolled in courses (not on a leave of absence, extended status, or studying abroad) will be charged the U-Pass fee.  There is no option to opt out.  This is a CTA/U-Pass policy. If you do not pick up your U-­Pass, you will still be assessed the fee on your student account.

    A U-Pass may only be used on Pace buses if you have added your own fare to the card. U-Passes cannot be used on Metra at all.

    U-Pass is a program offered by the Chicago Transit Authority in which full-time students at participating institutions receive a card granting them unlimited rides on CTA trains and buses for a flat, quarterly fee.

    U-Pass operates under a per diem system, in which participating institutions are charged a fixed amount per cardholder per day that the card is active. Under UChicago's academic calendar, this comes out to approximately $106 per quarter.

    U-Pass is covered as part of financial aid packages for students receiving aid, just like the standard student fee. Students in the College not receiving aid will be charged the $106 per quarter as an additional fee, in the same manner as the Student Services Fee.

    Incoming students may pick up their U-Pass during Orientation.

    Replacement U-Passes can be picked up from Alumni House Front Desk (5555 S. Woodlawn Ave.), Monday-Friday from 9:30am-11:45am and 1pm-4pm.

    Please bring your UChicago Student ID card or a government issued photo ID.


    First, make sure you're enrolled full-time or have an approved reduced course load.  If you are not eligible, your U-Pass has been deactivated.   

    Please be aware that students who have incurred a negative balance greater than $2.25 will have their U-Pass unlimited riding privileges temporarily suspended until they pay off their balance.  Students may pay off their balance at , via the Ventra App, at Ventra Vending Machines, CTA rail stations, participating local Retailers, or over the phone by calling 877-669-8368.

    If you are eligible and without a negative balance, please email or contact the College Dean of Students reception desk at 773.702.8615. If the situation cannot be resolved, contact Ventra at 877.669.8368.

    All full-time College students will receive a U-Pass. Students not enrolled in courses (i.e. on a leave of absence or extended status) or students participating in Study Abroad opportunities are not eligible.

    You will be charged the U-Pass fee for each quarter you are enrolled as a full-time student. The fee will be reflected like any other charge on your account, for example: Student Services Fee.

    No. If you are a full-time student you cannot opt out or be refunded the U-Pass fee. This is a CTA/U-Pass policy. If you do not pick up your U­Pass, you will still be assessed the fee on your student account.

    You have unlimited rides on CTA trains and buses. However you cannot use your pass at the same station or bus line within 15 minutes. Please note the unlimited feature is for your use only. There must be available funds on your card for additional riders. Your U-Pass is active during the quarter(s) in which you are enrolled as a full-time student. The U-Pass is not active during Summer Quarter

    Please complete the Replacement Request Form to report your U-Pass as lost or stolen. You will be required to pay a non-refundable $50 replacement fee. It takes 7 to 10 days to replace a CTA U-Pass card.

    No. Your U-Pass is valid as long as you are a full-time student. Your Ventra U-Pass unlimited riding privilege automatically resumes when your next full-time term begins. Reminder: The U-Pass is not active during Summer Quarter.

    You will not need to get a new Ventra card. Please be aware that during deactivation, your U-Pass card will function like a normal Ventra Card.  You must add funds to your account and your U-Pass will be charged the full fares of $2.25 for rail and $2 for bus during school breaks.

    Your transit value will roll over. It will not be affected regardless of your student status or quarter.

    The CTA Ventra U-Pass is non-transferable as it carries your photo and name. The CTA reserves the right to require a student to show a valid school identification card upon request. If this condition is violated, the U-Pass will be confiscated for the duration of the valid dates without reimbursement. Upon confiscation, a student will not be eligible for another U-Pass for up to one year.

    Students who already own a Ventra card will also be issued a U-Pass. The CTA U­ Pass is the only fare card where the unlimited riding feature is in use. Both cards will remain active, but will have separate accounts. Fees for standard Ventra cards will not be waived for students who own/have already purchased a Ventra card prior to receiving their U-Pass.