Chicago City Pass can save your 50% Amount what you exactly spend when you visit Chicago without a Chicago City Pass. Chicago is one of my favorite cities to see in the USA. It’s great architecture, tasty food, and a lot of things to see and do if you are visiting for a weekend or even a few weeks. Most people today visit Chicago for only a couple of days at a time, however. When you’ve got a limited quantity of time in the Windy City, you probably need to get the most out of it.
If it’s your first time to Chicago and you would like to stop by some of the city’s most iconic attractions and museums, my number one suggestion is this: purchase a Chicago City Pass.
What is Chicago city pass
Chicago City PASS is a company & organization based in USA that provides attraction ticket packages in a dozen cities across North America, with the idea being that if you are going to stop by plenty of major attractions on a single excursion, you can save some money by bundling everything together and purchasing a Chicago City Pass.
I have personally used City PASSes in cities such as Seattle and New Hollywood earlier, but I honestly believe their Chicago pass is among the best.
Chicago’s CityPASS includes entry to five of the Windy City’s top attractions.
Three of those attractions are set:
- Skydeck Chicago (the observation deck in the Willis Tower) Day+Night entry
- The Field Museum
- Shedd Aquarium
And for the other two you have options:
- 360 Chicago (observation deck in the John Hancock Building) OR Museum of Science and Industry
- Adler Planetarium OR Art Institute of Chicago
You can only visit each attraction once (they take the tickets from your CityPASS booklet at each attraction), but you’ve got 9 days to use all of them once you begin (i.e. once you come to your first attraction).
The Chicago City PASS prices $108 for adults and $89 for children.
And nowhere is the part where you point out that $100 is kind of expensive for an attraction pass — does it really save you money? Is it worthwhile?
Chicago City Pass Top Attractions:
If you love sea life, you can not overlook the Shedd Aquarium. Filled with over 32,000 sea creatures from all over the globe, this is easily one of my favorite spots in Chicago. The dolphin show is also a treat, so make certain to catch it while you are there.
Chicago’s Field Museum:
Chicago’s Field Museum is just another”can not miss” place in the Windy City. This unbelievable museum boasts Egyptian mummies, an impressive exhibit on over 10,000 years of Chinese history, and the world’s biggest T. Rex skeleton. Your Chicago CityPASS also includes admission to one of the museum’s 3D movie displays. Entrance to the traveling exhibits may require an additional fee, but — trust me — there’s a lot to see without it.
Get an incredible 360-degree view of the city — and up to 4 countries — when you jump to the peak of the world-famous Willis Tower. Previously known as the Sears Tower, this remarkable skyscraper is the 2nd tallest building in the Western Hemisphere. Besides the opinion, this fascination includes interactive displays and a fascinating short film about the history of the tower. You may even walk out on The Ledge — glass floor balconies located 103 floors above the city.
Art Institute Of Chicago:
I have visited art museums all around the planet, and I can not urge the Art Institute of Chicago enough. This is one of those either/or alternatives, but it could be my favorite attraction in Chicago. Take your time wandering through the museum and get up close and personal with works by Picasso, Van Gogh, Monet, Matisse, Cezanne, Rembrandt, and a lot more. Their enormous collection also includes two paintings you are guaranteed to understand — American Gothic as well as the important pointillist masterpiece Sunday Afternoon on La Grande Jatte.
If art is not your thing, the Adler Planetarium could be. Located on the shore’s of Lake Michigan, America’s first planetarium includes over 60,000 square feet of displays and two domed theaters. There are loads of learning opportunities and hands-on activities for adults and kids alike. The building also houses the Doane Observatory and its telescope, which is one of the few urban research observatories in life.
360 Chicago provides you the chance to view Chicago’s impressive skyline from another angle. Located at the peak of the John Hancock Center, this website contains interactive exhibits that teach you about Chicago’s rough and tumble history. Situated close to the lake, you also get an extraordinary view of Chicago’s shores from over 1,000 feet in the air.
Museum of Science and Industry
Since Skydeck Chicago is already included, you may want to skip 360 Chicago and take a look at the Museum of Science and Industry rather. Measuring at 14 acres, this is the largest science museum in the whole country. Exhibits here include a captured German U-boat from WWII, a replica coal mine, and the Apollo 8 spacecraft (yes, that is the one which attracted the first astronauts to the moon)! Lots of individuals consider this their favorite website in Chicago, and I can certainly see why.
How Chicago City Pass Works
The Chicago CityPASS is a sightseeing pass that may save you money on attractions in Chicago. By bundling fees and including entrance to such sites in the purchase price of the pass, you receive a hefty discount on the prices you would pay at the door.
In cases like this, the Chicago CityPASS can actually save as much as 50% on entrance fees into the included sites.
Like the London Explorer Pass, the Chicago CityPASS includes your entrance to a fixed variety of attractions. With this pass, you will get a “free” entrance to five of Chicago’s top seven places. Three of those attractions are included with each pass, while the remaining four draws offer an either/or option. You may see the attractions in almost any order you prefer, and the tickets are good for nine consecutive days starting with the first day that you use the pass.
Unlike other popular sightseeing moves, the Chicago CityPASS really comes as a book filled with tickets. (Printed and mobile vouchers are also available, though you have to redeem these vouchers for a real booklet.) Typically, you may just present the ticket from your booklet as you enter. The either/or tickets typically have to be exchanged at the ticket counter to get a real attraction ticket. No matter entry to these attractions is included in the purchase price of your pass.
Why I like Chicago city pass
Well, here are 3 reasons why I believe the Chicago CityPASS is definitely worthwhile:
It’s Include Chicago’s Top Attractions:
Chicago is home to world-class museums and attractions, plus they are all included in this pass.
Virtually everyone wants to see the Willis Tower (formerly the Sears Tower) in Chicago. Along with the Art Institute of Chicago is among the oldest and largest art museums in the U.S.
If this pass included less-popular attractions, it may not be as worthwhile. But chances are most of the things on your Chicago “to-do” list will be included in the Chicago City Pass.
- You get Quick Pass / VIP entrance
The cool thing about the Chicago CityPASS is that it includes Quick Pass or VIP entrance to almost every attraction recorded. (You don’t find Quick Pass entry to the Skydeck, but with your day/night ticket pre-purchased means you can go right to the safety line and skip the line to purchase tickets.)
In the Shedd Aquarium, you receive Priority Entry, including access to special exhibits as well as the Stingray Touch experience, in addition to a 4-D experience. In the Field Museum, you receive VIP Entry (meaning you can skip the line) and an All-Access Pass, including admission to all permanent and ticketed exhibitions, and your selection of a single digital 3D film.
You also find skip-the-line Quick Pass entrance at 360 Chicago (although the lines are generally not provided that as in the Skydeck).
In the Museum of Science and Industry, you get regular entrance along with your choice of a single timed-entry experience. In the Adler Planetarium, your CityPASS provides you with a Premium Pass to the museum and many shows.
- It can save you a lot of amount
Normal Rates for skip-the-line and all-access moves at these attractions are as follows:
Skydeck Day/Night – $45
Shedd Aquarium – $44.90
Field Museum All-Access – $38
MSI Museum Entry – $21.95
360 Chicago Express Admission – $44
Adler Planetarium All-Access – $34.95
Art Institute of Chicago – $29
As you can see, you are pretty much-saving money after seeing just two or three attractions; if you stop by all 6, you are saving about 50 percent – that is a lot!
(And, as somebody who has seen the Skydeck twice, allow me to inform you that the Fast Pass is SO WORTH IT here. In the off-season, weekend wait times can easily surpass two hours in case you must wait in line to purchase tickets and ride the elevator to the observation deck. Just imagine how much more you can see if you did not need to spend 2-3 hours standing in line!)
My Overall Experience With Chicago City Pass:
Even though you don’t have to do everything in one or two days with a CityPASS (remember, you have nine days from when you use your first ticket to utilize your entire CityPASS booklet), you can pack all the highlights into a long weekend in Chicago.
A sample itinerary could look like this:
- Day 1
Go to the Skydeck in the late morning, and then spend the day at either the Art Institute of Chicago or Adler Planetarium.
- Day 2
Spend your day at the Museum Campus. Start out at the Shedd Aquarium, and allow at least a couple of hours to explore the Field Museum.
- Day 3
If you go for 360 Chicago, you’ll only need an hour or so for your experience as you won’t have to stand in any lines. OR you could spend half a day at the Museum of Science and Industry.
So, conclusion? A Chicago CityPASS is definitely worthwhile in Chicago if you are already planning to see at least 3 of these attractions. Plus, the quick pass/VIP entry is an added bonus that can save you quite a lot of time, along with cash.Find more interesting city pass reviews and offers
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