Busjack

Ventra - Bugs, Feedback, and Questions

1480 posts in this topic

The one area that ventra or the CTA really botched is the lack of customer support. Even though people will buy cards at Jewel, they still have to register them. Something that is the most difficult part of the process. It took me two days to do this myself. One area that seems to be weak for instance is the lack of a registration station next to the ventra machines or at Jewel. At Dominick's when they started they're just 4 you plan they had no kiosks at the store in which to select your items that you wanted. They do now. This is something Cta should have done. There will be alot of riders on monday with ventra cards that don't understand they need registering. Once everyone registers things should run smoother. But still Cta will have new riders that need to register. That's why I vote for permanant registration kiosks at all locations ventra is sold.

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The one area that ventra or the CTA really botched is the lack of customer support. Even though people will buy cards at Jewel, they still have to register them. Something that is the most difficult part of the process. It took me two days to do this myself. One area that seems to be weak for instance is the lack of a registration station next to the ventra machines or at Jewel. At Dominick's when they started they're just 4 you plan they had no kiosks at the store in which to select your items that you wanted. They do now. This is something Cta should have done. There will be alot of riders on monday with ventra cards that don't understand they need registering. Once everyone registers things should run smoother. But still Cta will have new riders that need to register. That's why I vote for permanant registration kiosks at all locations ventra is sold.

My solution that would never happen:

No retail sales in any form, more vending machines, make registering a step in the purchase process on the machine itself so you can ultimately spend only $5 for your Ventra card with $5 on your transit account.

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The one confusion that does need to be cleared, and this is CTA's fault on this, is the perception that the cards have to be registered to ride. They do not. The registration is for getting the $5 turned back into some form of transit credit either as fare or a pass discount, and for protecting what's loaded on the card in case of loss or theft. If some have ran into problems riding without registering then either that's another glitch for them to fix or they need to correct what they said both on their own website and the Ventra website in that regard.

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The one confusion that does need to be cleared, and this is CTA's fault on this, is the perception that the cards have to be registered to ride. They do not. The registration is for getting the $5 turned back into some form of transit credit either as fare or a pass discount, and for protecting what's loaded on the card in case of loss or theft. If some have ran into problems riding without registering then either that's another glitch for them to fix or they need to correct what they said both on their own website and the Ventra website in that regard.

Yes, that drove me into a snit for a few hours last week.

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That might be why some are getting Into trouble with negative balances. They put less than $7.25 on a card and fail to register it.Then they expect to ride and ventra obliges. A good question would be what if someone rides pace with a 7 day cta pass. Will ventra let you ride but secretly charge you a pace fare? There may still be alot of pitfalls to watch out for for users of ventra.

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What about it is deceptive? To me, as I said, the "same as cash" mantra applies to the concept. What about it do you find deceptive?

Why don't you look at the conversation about 3 weeks ago? There seems to be no point repeating it.

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My solution that would never happen:

No retail sales in any form, more vending machines, make registering a step in the purchase process on the machine itself so you can ultimately spend only $5 for your Ventra card with $5 on your transit account.

Not a solution. Why don't you go to the Ventra map, find all the locations, both suburban and city that are not within 1/4 mile of a rail station, then go to the Pace minutes on a cost of a machine and multiply it all out.

Don't forget that the only alternative is paying full fare without a transfer on a bus.

Let's also remember that they lied about waiving the $5 fee during the rollout. Are you going to start an argument about that, too?

And if you think the problem is the users, check out that the CTA Tattler again posted the registration process, including difference between the 3 types of codes, and then see this comment:

This system is the fail. If you think the users are the problem, check out the Ventra FB page.

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That might be why some are getting Into trouble with negative balances. They put less than $7.25 on a card and fail to register it.Then they expect to ride and ventra obliges. A good question would be what if someone rides pace with a 7 day cta pass. Will ventra let you ride but secretly charge you a pace fare? There may still be alot of pitfalls to watch out for for users of ventra.

Obviously, it would deduct the Pace fare from whatever stored value transit account. Whether there would be a negative balance, or the Pace driver will try to kick you off is another question.

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Not a solution. Why don't you go to the Ventra map, find all the locations, both suburban and city that are not within 1/4 mile of a rail station, then go to the Pace minutes on a cost of a machine and multiply it all out.

Don't forget that the only alternative is paying full fare without a transfer on a bus.

Let's also remember that they lied about waiving the $5 fee during the rollout. Are you going to start an argument about that, too?

And if you think the problem is the users, check out that the CTA Tattler again posted the registration process, including difference between the 3 types of codes, and then see this comment:

Can't Chicago Card and CCP users just do the whole registration process online and bypass the crappy phone process? I mentioned some weeks ago that I did the registration online and it only took about five minutes at most. And since I bought my card directly from a vending machine, I didn't have a confusing instruction insert to contend with. The only instructions I followed were all online and pretty straight forward actually.

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Can't Chicago Card and CCP users just do the whole registration process online and bypass the crappy phone process? I mentioned some weeks ago that I did the registration online and it only took about five minutes at most. And since I bought my card directly from a vending machine, I didn't have a confusing instruction insert to contend with. The only instructions I followed were all online and pretty straight forward actually.

Heck if I know, but the additional comments in the CTA Tattler indicate that an awful lot of people are getting the runaround.

The distinction seems to be that if you buy it in a vending machine, CTA knows you have the card, and you can transfer value from mag cards and CC at the main office or an event in a park, while if you had CCP, activation (not registration) confirms that you received it in the mail, and is necessary to transfer the balance from the CCP account to the Ventra account.

As I noted before in connection that the "waiver of the registration fee was a lie," the CCP users are already registered, just the hitch being that they have to activate their Ventra cards, if they ever get them.

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Can't Chicago Card and CCP users just do the whole registration process online and bypass the crappy phone process?

If you receive a Ventra card in the mail, you must call to activate it. This is an automated process.

The main hiccup people are having with activation seems to be the access code. CCP (and CC?) users got emails in advance prompting them to create this code. Most probably didn't and others forgot the code after waiting nearly a month for the card to finally arrive. If you forgot the code, or deleted the email without creating it, you're stuck in hotline hell and will need to wait 30-60 minutes on hold to speak to a rep. But you'll probably get disconnected on minute 56 of your 57 minute wait.

The activation process is really no different from activating a credit card, but for credit cards the "access code" is typically the last 4 digits of your SSN.

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...

The activation process is really no different from activating a credit card, but for credit cards the "access code" is typically the last 4 digits of your SSN.

Usually, it is the 3 digits on the signature strip on the back of the card following the 4 digits indicating the last 4 digits of the account number. Real issuers don't want the SSNs hacked.

They also usually check the phone number generated by caller ID against your phone number on file, or ask if you are calling from a different phone.

And some allow activation on line.

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Usually, it is the 3 digits on the signature strip on the back of the card following the 4 digits indicating the last 4 digits of the account number. Real issuers don't want the SSNs hacked.

They also usually check the phone number generated by caller ID against your phone number on file, or ask if you are calling from a different phone.

And some allow activation on line.

I can't remember what I was asked for the last time I activated a credit card by phone, but you're probably right.

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Anyone know if a Senior Citizen can just get a Ventra Card from a retailer? My Mom got a notice months ago about the Ventra Card being sent out in the fall(registered Chicago Card holder) but has yet to receive it in the mail. I tried the 877-Ventra number, but it doesn't seem to work, and the CTA Customer Service line is busy.

I was thinking screw it and buying one from Jewel for her, but only if she'll get reduced fare for it, not the full fare.

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Anyone know if a Senior Citizen can just get a Ventra Card from a retailer? My Mom got a notice months ago about the Ventra Card being sent out in the fall(registered Chicago Card holder) but has yet to receive it in the mail. I tried the 877-Ventra number, but it doesn't seem to work, and the CTA Customer Service line is busy.

I was thinking screw it and buying one from Jewel for her, but only if she'll get reduced fare for it, not the full fare.

Apparently the only way a senior gets a reduced fare on other than a cash basis is if the RTA (not the CTA) sends her a card and the fare is preloaded onto that card (RTA page, which says the process will continue through the end of November).

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Why don't you look at the conversation about 3 weeks ago? There seems to be no point repeating it.

Will read back later tonight.

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If you receive a Ventra card in the mail, you must call to activate it. This is an automated process.

The main hiccup people are having with activation seems to be the access code. CCP (and CC?) users got emails in advance prompting them to create this code. Most probably didn't and others forgot the code after waiting nearly a month for the card to finally arrive. If you forgot the code, or deleted the email without creating it, you're stuck in hotline hell and will need to wait 30-60 minutes on hold to speak to a rep. But you'll probably get disconnected on minute 56 of your 57 minute wait.

The activation process is really no different from activating a credit card, but for credit cards the "access code" is typically the last 4 digits of your SSN.

Usually, it is the 3 digits on the signature strip on the back of the card following the 4 digits indicating the last 4 digits of the account number. Real issuers don't want the SSNs hacked.

They also usually check the phone number generated by caller ID against your phone number on file, or ask if you are calling from a different phone.

And some allow activation on line.

I can't remember what I was asked for the last time I activated a credit card by phone, but you're probably right.

Kevin is correct on this one, I just activated a new debit card last week and was asked for the last 4 of my SSN.

The goal of phone activation is to confirm that you received the card and that it is in possession of the actual cardholder. The idea being that if Johnny receives Joey's card, Johnny cannot activate it because he does not know Joey's personal information. If it was just the three digit code on the back, Johnny could activate and use a card that was not his that he somehow intercepted before Joey received it. The "challenge" they ask can range from anything from SSN to birthday to checking account number to home phone number. I have also seen systems that just confirm you are calling from a "known phone" using caller ID, but less of those since caller ID spoofing became more popular.

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Just looked at my account, and it says

Status: Closed

Current Transit Balance:
Transit Autoload Amount
$0.00

What does Status Closed mean ?

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Usually, it is the 3 digits on the signature strip on the back of the card following the 4 digits indicating the last 4 digits of the account number. Real issuers don't want the SSNs hacked.

 

Every card I've ever call to activate has asked for some piece of personally identifying information. That's usually SSN (or the last four digits of it.), but some times it's been other things (I had a card express shipped to an out of town hotel, and Chase made me answer a bunch of questions before they'd activate it.) The idea is that they're making sure you didn't just steal the envelope out of a mailbox.

The ventra people don't have the luxury of knowing any personal information about you (other than the name that was on your CCP account, which doesn't have to have been real). so they have to do the "send an email to set it up" dance. They could have done it better (like, not have a six week delay between when they say they're mailing the card, and when they actually do.)

Also, I've been trying to look at my ventra account online for the last four or five days. I can log in, I sometimes see some information, and then get redirected to an error page. Sometimes, I get the error page directly. Yay. (Update: just checked again, and I can get in. If they're applying things in chronological order, they missed about five trips, two full fare, two transfers and one that might be either. Does that make up for the people they're billing twice?)

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Tribune article. Between the CTA Tattler, complaints to the Tribune, and all the comments on both places, something has to be wrong (other than the consumers).

Didn't Steele promise to get the call wait time down a couple of weeks ago?

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Just looked at my account, and it says

Status: Closed

Current Transit Balance:

Transit Autoload Amount

$0.00

What does Status Closed mean ?

Is there an "Add Value" button to the left of "Current Transit Balance"? If so, maybe it's just a confusing way of saying "There's no money on this card". If no, maybe it means the card is actually disabled for some reason. FWIW, my card's status is "Active".

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Is there an "Add Value" button to the left of "Current Transit Balance"? If so, maybe it's just a confusing way of saying "There's no money on this card". If no, maybe it means the card is actually disabled for some reason. FWIW, my card's status is "Active".

It's either that or you have a bad card. I hope you didn't have money on the card or I'd be calling ventra. When I loaded a card I got error messages as well, but everything's fine so far.

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Anyone know if a Senior Citizen can just get a Ventra Card from a retailer? My Mom got a notice months ago about the Ventra Card being sent out in the fall(registered Chicago Card holder) but has yet to receive it in the mail. I tried the 877-Ventra number, but it doesn't seem to work, and the CTA Customer Service line is busy.

I was thinking screw it and buying one from Jewel for her, but only if she'll get reduced fare for it, not the full fare.

Seniors should have got their Ventra cards last month in the mail. (mid September) The cards have a picture ID of the rider, so I don't believe it's possible to buy a reduced fare ventra card. All the reduced fare student cards were issued also. Maybe you should send either Ventra or CTA an email.

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Seniors should have got their Ventra cards last month in the mail. (mid September) ...

As I noted above, the RTA page said through November, and CTA has nothing to do with it.

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Just looked at my account, and it says

Status: Closed

Current Transit Balance:

Transit Autoload Amount

$0.00

What does Status Closed mean ?

I believe it is closed because the card is not fully activated yet.

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