Watch the CTA Holiday Train
No madness in 2020
Santa will come by but no one will be able to board.
Prepare for the madness. The Chicagoist published this article about riding the CTA Holiday train. It sounds pretty awful. This year in an attempt to alleviate the overcrowding on the Santa train they’ll also be running the six-car Elves’ Workshop Train right behind the Santa train each day it’s in service. I’ve never attempted to do this. Now that they’re running the Elf train on weekdays I may give it a shot. Travel Tips
When and Where
When: Nov. 27-December 21, 2020. The train generally operates from about 1pm to 8pm on weekends and 3pm to 7pm on select weekdays (schedules for each rail line will vary), and will make stops at all stations along the respective routes. Full schedule below.
All CTA rail lines Regular CTA fares apply: $2.50 one way; $5.00 from O’hare.
In 2020, the CTA Holiday Train will travel out-of-service, meaning that customers will not be able to board the train. The train will travel all eight rail lines beginning Friday, November 27 (the day after Thanksgiving) through Monday, December 21
In order to help avoid crowding at stations and on platforms, look for the CTA Holiday Train during afternoons on the dates and rail lines listed below:
- Green Line: November 27-28, December 1
- Brown Line: December 2-5
- Orange Line: December 2-5
- Red Line: December 8, 10 and 12
- Purple Line: December 9, 11 and 12
- Pink Line: December 15, 16 and 19
- Blue Line: December 17-19
- Yellow Line: December 21
What is it?
The Chicago Transit Authority is getting into the holiday spirit with the Holiday Train. Santa will ride on his own train and a second train (on Saturdays only) will carry his elves who will pass out candy canes and season’s greetings.
The outside of the six-car train is adorned with holiday seasonal images, thousands of twinkling lights with even more lights running across the tops of the cars. The interiors re decked out with thousands of multi-colored lights, red bows, garland, and red and green overhead lighting. The hand poles are wrapped to look like candy canes.
As the train pulls into each station, Santa waves to the boarding passengers from his sleigh on an open-air flatcar carrying his reindeer and decorated holiday trees. This year the elves should be waving also.
Here’s my experience with the CTA Holiday Bus which is running Nov 26-Dec 23, 2019.
= Photos with Santa; Elves’ Workshop Train in service and directly following the main holiday train