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Tuesday is V-Day: CTA, Pace now accept only Ventra cards

VentrCards Use. Chicago Sun-Times

Ventra Cards in Use. Chicago Sun-Times

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Updated: June 30, 2014 9:57PM

Starting Tuesday, Chicago Transit Authority and Pace customers are now living in a Ventra-only world. The old magnetic-stripe fare cards are no longer accepted.

Until July 7, riders can still buy Ventra cards at more than 1,300 retailers without paying a $5 one-time new card fee. Ventra cards purchased from machines at CTA stations cost $5, but that is returned to the customer in transit credit once the card is registered online.

“Contactless” credit and debit cards — with radio frequency identification chips — also can be used on the same readers under the next nine years of the Ventra deal.

CTA officials estimated late last weeek that more than 98 percent of CTA rides already were being purchased with Ventra cards. But at the time, Pace riders were taking more time to adjust, with only about 70 percent of Pace rides being purchased with Ventra cards, Pace officials said.

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