More Ventra app glitches leave Metra riders unable to buy tickets

The app was working Sunday, but some purchases weren’t going through Monday as the morning commute began.

Ventra mobile app shown on phone
Some Metra riders were still having trouble buying tickets through the Ventra app Monday. Ashlee Rezin / Chicago Sun-Times
Ventra mobile app shown on phone
Some Metra riders were still having trouble buying tickets through the Ventra app Monday. Ashlee Rezin / Chicago Sun-Times

More Ventra app glitches leave Metra riders unable to buy tickets

The app was working Sunday, but some purchases weren’t going through Monday as the morning commute began.

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Metra riders were struggling with online ticket purchases Monday after the commuter rail agency thought it had resolved problems with the Ventra app.

The Ventra app was restored Sunday after being down for three days, then it crashed again Monday. Some purchases were going through, but software glitches were keeping the app from working seamlessly.

“We’re definitely seeing some problems,” said Metra spokesperson Meg Reile. “They did a major software upload this weekend, and we thought that would fix the problem.”

Last week, commuters confronted obstacles on the Ventra app when it crashed on the first day of a slew of changes meant to streamline purchasing and attract new riders.

Most of the issues stem from trying to buy tickets, which could have been sparked by the influx of app users beginning last week after Metra eliminated its physical sales at ticket windows. That change was part of a larger overhaul updating fare structure and other operations that took effect Thursday.

Metra is working with the app vendor, Cubic, to fix the problems as soon as possible. CTA and Pace ticketing are also done through the Ventra app, but most of the problems are affecting Metra tickets.

Until the app is working again, riders can show their frozen phone screen to conductors, and they’ll be allowed to ride.

Prices are now based on a zone system. A monthly pass costs $75 from Zone 2 to Zone 1; $110 from Zone 3 to Zone 1; and $135 from Zone 4 to Zone 1.