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Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Chicago CTA Ventra Open Fare Payment System Ventra Vending Machine - Physical Description for public and accessibility

the information is shared by Chicago Transit Authority ADA Compliance Programs, update when available

photo: CTA Ventra vending machine

Ventra Open Fare Payment System

Ventra Vending Machine (VVM) Description

The purpose of this document is to provide a physical description of the Ventra Vending Machines (VVM) available at all CTA rail stations and a small number of off-site locations. These machines allow a customer to:
  • Buy a new, full fare reloadable Ventra Card. 
  • Buy disposable Ventra Tickets. 
  • Load CTA, Pace or joint CTA/Pace Pass to a card. 
  • Load transit value to a card. 
  • Check the transit account of a card. 
About Special Fare Programs 
 If you qualify for reduced fares as a senior or a person with a disability, you’ll need a special card from the RTA, who administers the Reduced Fare Program Cards (VVMs only issue regular, full-fare cards and tickets). Contact the RTA at 1-312-913-3110 or rtachicago.org for information on how to apply.

  • The VVMs do not give change. 
  • If you’re buying a pass and only have large bills, the difference can be loaded to your account as value, which can be used after a pass runs out. 
  • All machines accept cash, coin and credit/debit cards. 
  • The VVMs also provide information in selected languages, in addition to English. 
Ventra Vending Machine Physical Description
Overview The purpose of the Overview section is to provide a brief description of the entire machine. Each section mentioned in the Overview will then be described in more detail following this section.

The Ventra Vending Machine (VVM) is approximately 70 inches tall and 36 inches wide. At the very top of the machine, there is a Scrolling Visual Message. Below that message is the Information Panel that runs the width of the machine. Below the Information Panel is the Main Display Section, which includes the Display Screen on the left and the Cancel Button on the right. To the right of the Main Display Section is the Coin Slot. Below the Main Display Section on the left hand side is the PIN Keypad. Underneath the PIN Keypad are the Audio Button and Audio Jack for earphones. To the right of the PIN Keypad is the Credit/Debit Card Reader. To the right of this section, in the middle of the machine, is the Contactless Ventra Card Reader. To the right of the Contactless Ventra Card Reader is the Bill Insertion/Return Slot. At the center bottom of the machine is the Return Cup.

VVM Section By Section Descriptions
Scrolling Visual MessageAt the top 6 inches of the machine, at 65 inches from the ground, there is a continuous visual message in red print that scrolls across the width of the machine. Generally, this message reads, “Chicago Transit Authority” and notes “No Change Given.” In the event that the machine can’t offer certain services, such as if something has jammed the bill collector and it can’t accept bills, this is explained in this area. These messages are also reflected on the home screen or through the audio component at the beginning of a transaction.

Information PanelMoving down the machine, the next section is called the Information Panel. The Information Panel is located 55 inches from the bottom of the machine and is 30 inches wide. This section also has a metal frame around it that measures 3/4 inches thick. This section has information on CTA fares and tickets, ways to pay fares, and a section named “More Information.” All information included in this section can be found on the CTA website at transitchicago.com/fares. Information on Ventra cards and ways to pay fares can also be provided by calling Ventra at 1-877-NOW-VENTRA or by visiting their website at ventrachicago.com. Information on Reduced Fare Programs and rates can be provided by calling RTA at 1-312-913-3110 and selecting Option 2, to speak to a live operator.

Main Display
Continuing downward, the next section is the Main Display section, consisting of the Display Screen and the Cancel Button. 

Display Screen The Display Screen is 51 inches from the bottom of the machine and is located on the left half of the Main Display Section. The screen is recessed and measures 11-3/4 inches wide and 9 inches high.

There are tactile and Braille letters on each side of the screen. On the outside of each letter is a corresponding button. The left top letter is “A” which is 46 inches from the bottom of the machine. Moving downward, the letters on the left go from “A” to “E”. The letters on the opposite, or right-hand, side of this same screen start at “F” and run through letter “J”. Buttons correspond to transaction options written on the Display Screen, which is explicitly noted on the screen.

Press the Cancel Button to be taken to the start screen in order to begin a transaction. To start with audio instructions, press the audio button which is described in detail later in this document. The VVM will let you know both visually or audibly if no bills can be accepted at the machine.

You can also select other languages (Spanish and Polish) for instructions. To change your language preference, go to the main screen and select button letter “I” or, if using the audio component, button number “9” on the PIN Keypad, which will be described later.

Note: If you are using audio, the machine will instruct you to use the numbered PIN Keypad to select your transaction options. Numbers on the Keypad correspond to the buttons next to the Display Screen (A is 1, B is 2, I is 9, J is 0, etc.).
Cancel Button
To the right of the letter “J” button is the Cancel Button. There is a tactile arrow above the button and a raised letter and Braille sign that reads, “Cancel.” The Cancel Button is 43 inches from the bottom of the machine. The button is recessed with a smooth inside and a raised edge around the button that is red. The diameter of the Cancel Button is 2 inches. Pressing the Cancel Button at any time during a transaction will void and stop the transaction. There is also an audio sound to alert the user that the transaction has been stopped.

Note: There is a large smooth circle above the Cancel Button which measures 3-3/4 inches in diameter. This is only a mirror and has no function in relation to any transaction.

Coin Slot
Continuing directly to the right of the smooth mirror is a Coin Slot which is recessed and 47 inches from the bottom of the machine. Only coins are accepted in this area. Coins accepted are nickels, dimes, quarters and dollar coins, NO pennies or fifty cent pieces. The coin return button is to the left of the slot and should be pushed to get coins back. Coins are dispensed at the bottom center of the machine, which is the same place where Ventra Cards, Tickets and receipts are dispensed. This section, called the Return Cup, will be explained later.

PIN Keypad Returning to the left side of the machine, directly below the Main Display Section, there is a numbered PIN Keypad, approximately 35 inches from the bottom of the machine. The PIN Keypad is identified in raised print with Braille underneath as “Payment Card.” The keypad (where the numbers are located) is recessed in the machine and on a bit of an angle. Starting at the upper left corner, moving left to right, the pad reads:
  • 12 3 Cancel 
  • 4 5 6 Clear 
  • 8 9 Enter 
  • * 0 # Button with no function 
There are also additional tactile markings available to assist you. Starting at the top left button and moving across Row 1, the Cancel button has a small “X”, on Row 2, the number 5 button has a dot and the Clear button has a dash, and on Row 3, the Enter button has an “O”.

Audio Button and Audio Jack
Below the PIN Keypad is the Audio Button. There are both tactile and Braille letters above the button. There is a symbol to the right of the button illustrating that the volume will increase each time the button is pressed, up to 3 times. The audio will read everything written on the Display Screen (as it is a mix of what is shown on the screen and what is in the audio files). Please note, the machine will instruct you to use the PIN Keypad to select your transaction options when using audio, instead of the lettered buttons next to the Display Screen. To the right of the Audio Button is the Audio Jack for headphones. Both the Audio Button and Audio Jack are in a recessed small rectangular box measuring 5 inches wide by 1-1/2 inches high, which, again, is located directly below the PIN Keypad. 

Credit and Debit Card Reader To the right of the PIN Keypad is the slot that accepts credit or debit cards as payment. The slot sticks out a little over an inch from the machine. Credit or debit cards need to be inserted horizontally with the raised number on the bottom left side of the card and the stripe on the top right. If the credit or debit card is put into the machine incorrectly, the machine will tell you that it cannot process your payment. The VVM accepts VISA, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover.

Contactless Ventra Card Reader To the right of the Credit and Debit Card Reader slot is the Contactless Ventra Card Reader. The target is a large circle, approximately 4-1/2 inches in diameter. The center of the circle is smooth with a rough edge around the perimeter. Above the circle, there is a tactile arrow with raised letters and a Braille sign that says, “Tap Below.” 

The purpose of the Contactless Ventra Card Reader is to:
  • Read and display the current balance on a Ventra Card. 
  • Read and display the expiration date of a single ride or one day only ticket. 
  • Read the Ventra Card and then display the next screen which allows the customer to add value or buy a pass. 
In order to hear a card balance, you must first press the Audio Button, then tap your Ventra Card on the center of the circle and wait a couple of seconds for the machine to read the current value on the card. The machine will continue to provide audio directions regarding which PIN Keypad number button to press to continue a transaction. If the card is tapped but the Audio Button is not pressed, only visual balance information is displayed on the Display Screen above.

Bill Insertion/Return Slot To the right of the Contactless Card Reader is a rectangular section where only bills (cash) may be used to add transit value to a Ventra Card or pay for a pass. The rectangle measures 5-3/4 inches wide and 6-1/4 inches high. In the upper half of this rectangle is a slightly angled slot where bills can be inserted in any direction. REMEMBER, the machine does NOT give change. If you make a mistake and want your money back before the transaction is finished, push the Cancel Button (located directly above the insertion slot) and your bills are returned in a slot located just below where they were inserted. To the right of this area is a tactile arrow and Braille and tactile print which says, “Bills.” The VVM accepts $1, $5, $10, and $20 bills.

Note: Although not listed, the machine will accept $50 or $100 bills. But keep in mind the VVM does NOT give change.

Return Cup At the bottom center of the machine is the Return Cup. This section is 15 inches from the bottom of the machine. This section is labeled with a raised tactile arrow and tactile print and Braille sign that reads, “Card/Ticket/Receipt.” The area is a raised box framed in black measuring 17-1/2 inches wide and 11 inches high. Near the bottom of this box is a long slit which pushes in. This is where cards, tickets, receipts or coins are dispensed.
Note: To the right of the Return Cup is a keyhole used only by staff to open the machine for maintenance.


For more on Chicago Transit Authority ADA Compliance Programs: http://www.transitchicago.com/accessibility/ 

as a reminder:

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