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CTA, You're Making It Difficult To Be Easy

By Jocelyn Geboy in News on Mar 21, 2006 6:11PM

At every turn, the CTA is hawking their new staple of efficiency (excuse our sarcastic laughter) -- the Chicago Card and the Chicago Card Plus. Premise? You board buses and trains faster. You get a discount on fares -- you get the transfers that straight up cash riders don't get. You look sleek and cool by waving your card, hearing the snazzy 'beep beep' and gliding right on.

Yeah. All that would be fine if all those things actually happened. If the card actually worked like it was supposed to. If people would let you pass to get to the 'go lane' entrance. If you could distinguish the working 'beep beep' from the you suck/invalid 'beep beep beep.' Or if the CTA actually knew how to bill people properly*.

Turns out that the people on Pace who had Chicago Card Plus cards got the shaft and were overbilled in the last few days. One gentleman was overbilled $120 three times in the last three days. Yipes.

Of course, the CTA is working out the problems, refunding the money, blah blah blah. If you have any questions (e.g. Where is my money, biotch?) you should contact the CTA at or call 1-888-968-7282 between 7 a.m. and 8 p.m. weekdays. However, we just called that number yesterday to replace our near to non-working card yesterday, and stayed on hold for quite sometime. We also found out that if you go to the main office (567 W. Lake St., just one block west of the Clinton stop on the Green Line), you can't pick up a card that day. It has to be mailed to you or you have to go back in a couple of days.

*Full disclosure -- the Chicago Card Plus comes right out of our checking account, and if we were to lose it, we could replace it. We actually like it pretty fine most of the time. It's just that this one we had was crapping out on us.

Image via smussyolay.