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Metra ridership hits a post-COVID high

Masks are still required on trains, and $10 all-day passes will be extended through Sept. 30.

A Metra train arrives as a woman walks on the platform at the Glenview Amtrak/Metra Station.
A Metra train arrives as a woman walks on the platform at the Glenview Amtrak/Metra Station. File Photo.
Nam Y. Huh, AP Photos

Commuters are heading back to the office, and tourists are trickling back into the Chicagoland area.

As of Tuesday, Metra had more than 56,637 passenger trips, a post-COVID high but still well below the weekday average of 287,593 passenger trips in June 2019.

“At the start of this year, we were at about 20,000 passenger trips per day. We hit 40,000 by the end of May,” said Metra spokesperson Michael Gillis.

Masks are still required on trains, and $10 all-day passes will be extended through Sept. 30. The pass was introduced in June 2020 and is currently used by about a third of Metra riders.

“It’s been very popular during the pandemic, especially people beyond our D zone,” said Metra spokesperson Meg Riley. “It’s actually cheaper than a round-trip ticket and is in recognition that many of our riders are still not back to a full-time commute.”

BNSF, Metra Electric and Union Pacific North line’s new schedules will begin July 12. Rock Island line’s revised schedule will be effective July 19. Metra’s enhanced pilot schedules can be found here.