Getting Around

Chicago has one of the largest public transportation systems in the country and getting around the city is fast and easy with an extensive network of train and bus routes. The train system is known as the 'L'; most visitors only use the 'L', but buses also cover every part of the city including the suburbs, albeit less regularly. Most trains run 24 hours a day, with Overnight or Night Owl services taking over between midnight and 5am on some lines.

The Metra commuter trains link the city to the outer suburbs, including Lake Michigan, Hyde Park, and McCormick Place. During the summer months, a free trolley system operates in the downtown area, connecting Chicago's top cultural attractions, shopping areas, and visitor destinations. Taxis are easy to find, and the metered rates are reasonable for short journeys. Although traffic is not as bad as in other major cities (outside rush hour), parking is expensive and difficult to find. Uber and Lyft are also available.

Airports

Chicago O'Hare International

Chicago O'Hare is located 17 miles (27km) northwest of Chicago.

Chicago O'Hare International (ORD)

Location

Chicago O'Hare is located 17 miles (27km) northwest of Chicago.

Getting to the city

Blue Line trains run every few minutes between the airport and downtown Chicago 24 hours a day; the journey takes around 50 minutes. For safety reasons travellers are advised against using the Blue Line at night. Travellers can also use the Pace bus service to get to downtown Chicago. Taxi ranks are situated outside the arrivals hall in each of the airport terminals; the fare is around $40 for the 30 to 45 minute journey from the airport to downtown Chicago.

Time

GMT -6 (GMT -5 from March to November).

Car rental

Companies represented at the airport include Alamo, Avis, Budget, Hertz, and National.

Airport Taxis

There are plenty of metered taxis outside, and a taxi to the centre of Chicago takes approximately 30 to 45 minutes and costs about $40. But be prepared to pay twice as much during rush hour.

Transfer between terminals

A free automated rail system, the Airport Transit System connects all terminals.

Facilities

Facilities at the airport include restaurants, bars, shops, duty-free shopping, bureaux de change, a bank, and ATMs. The Hilton Health Club provides a health club, sauna, steam room, and massage. There is a medical centre, baby-change facilities, a play area, and a 24-hour interfaith chapel. There are also many airport art exhibits to view as well as the Urban Garen, the first aeroponic garden in the world.

Parking

Parking at Chicago O'Hare is divided into the main lots, international lots, economy lots, and valet lots, with an additional free Cell Phone Lot for pick-ups and drop-offs. Fees range from around $3 per hour at the main lots, or $6 for two hours at the international lot, to $17 per day in the economy lots. Valet parking is also available.

www.flychicago.com

Chicago Midway Airport

The airport is located eight miles (13km) from downtown Chicago.

Chicago Midway Airport (MDW)

Location

The airport is located eight miles (13km) from downtown Chicago.

Getting to the city

Passengers transfering to Chicago can rent a car, or hire a limo or taxi. The Chicago Transit Authority's Orange Line runs from the airport to downtown Chicago. There are also bus services from the airport to throughout the city. The Continental Airport Express has door-to-door service on shuttles leaving every 15 minutes.


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Car rental

There are several car rental agencies based at Chicago Midway.

Airport Taxis

There are taxis available from the airport lower level to downtown Chicago or any other destination.

Facilities

The airport offers restaurants, cafes, gift shops, a business centre, yoga room, ATMs and a chapel.

Parking

There is a six-level parking garage attached to the airport by a covered walkway. Complimentary shuttle buses to the terminals run every 15 minutes, 24 hours a day.

flychicago.com