Loyola University Chicago

CTA U-Pass

Loyola Policies


Loyola University Chicago has created several internal policies related to the U-Pass program. Many of these policies govern who is eligible for the U-Pass and the programs that participate in the U-Pass program. Additional policies are related to the use and function of the U-Pass and items related to the activation, distribution, and deactivation of all passes to the Loyola University Chicago student community. Below are select policies that we believe students face day-to-day.

Eligibility Policy

Who Qualifies for the U-Pass (all semesters)?

Generally, undergraduate and graduate students in qualifying programs with enough qualifying credit hours qualify for the Loyola U-Pass. Quinlan School of Business Graduate Programs require 6 or more graduate business credit hours to qualify for the U-Pass.

The following students are eligible to participate in the CTA U-Pass program:

All undergraduate students enrolled in 12 or more credit hours at both Loyola campuses (Lake Shore and Water Tower) in:

  • College of Arts and Sciences
  • Quinlan School of Business
  • School of Communication
  • Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing
  • School of Education
  • School of Social Work
  • School of Continuing and Professional Studies (excluding programs structured as 8 week terms)
  • Institute of Environmental Sustainability
  • Parkinson School of Health Sciences and Public Health

All undergraduate students enrolled in 3 or more credit hours at both Lake Shore and Water Tower campuses in Arrupe College of Loyola University of Chicago.

Graduate students enrolled in 8 or more graduate credit hours (or 6 credit hours or more per quarter) at the Lake Shore or Water Tower campus in:

  • School of Law
  • School of Social Work
  • Institute of Pastoral Studies
  • Graduate School of Education
  • Graduate School
  • Institute of Environmental Sustainability
  • School of Communication
  • Parkinson School of Health Sciences and Public Health
  • Quinlan School of Business

All qualifying credit hours must appear in LOCUS as graded classes; departmental hours, pass/fail, or audited classes are NOT counted toward U-Pass qualification

The winter J-Term does not have the U-Pass benefit. The J-term does not count toward qualification in other terms.

The following programs are INELIGIBLE to participate in the CTA U-Pass program:

  • Any student enrolled in Loyola's Rome Center Campus or in any other programs located in foreign countries. 
  • Students enrolled in the Loyola University Medical Center, Educational Cohorts, the School of Continuing and Professional Studies, the EMBA program, and Social Work Carthage programs will not participate in the CTA U-Pass program.
  • Any graduate or professional studies students of Loyola who, regardless of number of credit hours, are enrolled exclusively in an online-only program and/or weekend only program of the School of Law, School of Education, School of Social Work, Graduate School, Institute of Pastoral Studies, Institute of Environmental Sustainability, School of Communication, Parkinson School of Health Sciences and Public Health, or Quinlan School of Business.
  • Graduate and professional students enrolled in programs located at the Loyola University Medical Center Health Sciences Campuses. Social Work programs at Carthage College will also not participate in the U-Pass program.

*The U-Pass is offered  in the summer to certain undergraduate programs, Quinlan School of Business Graduate Programs, and Arrupe College. Starting Summer 2020, the Graduate School of Social Work will be included in the Summer U-Pass program. All students that register for summer courses of 1 credit hour or more will be automatically enrolled in Loyola’s Summer U-Pass program.  The SSW program will run from 5/27/20 through 8/10/20, and includes all students taking GSWK courses and students in the PhD program.  All eligible students will be assessed a mandatory summer U-Pass fee of $108 on their LOCUS account.

It is not offered to traditional graduate programs or the Law School at this time.\


* Please note that changes in enrollment that drop a student to ineligible status may cause the U-Pass to be deactivated, depending on when the changes are made. Also note that if a student makes late changes that fall after the time that U-Pass eligibility can be updated, their U-Pass will not be active that semester.

* All eligible students are assessed the appropriate U-Pass fee and must be issued a U-Pass.  The U-Pass contract specifically prohibits individual student opt-in or opt-out of the U-Pass program for all students in participating programs. The opt-out for Fall 2020 is a one-time offer from the CTA.

* All eligible students must have programs based at the Lake Shore Campus or the Watertower Campus. Courses taken while studying abroad (Rome or Vietnam) or taking classes at the Maywood, Cuneo, or Woodstock Campuses are not eligible for the U-Pass total credit hour base.

* The final day to change classes and still be eligible for the U-Pass program is the 10th day of the term (undergraduates and graduates) and 7th day of the term (Graduate Business), respectively.  U-Pass fees are non-reversable. After the 10th and 7th day of the term(s),  any student who drops a course that would normally have made them ineligible, will still be able to use their U-Pass. The U-Pass fee will remain on the students' LOCUS account.

* All joint program eligible students may experience a 1-2 day delay in their passes activating in the event that their current program overlaps with another programs term (for example: the end of Law School spring courses overlapping with the start of Quinlan School of Business Program summer courses)


  • The CTA contract specifically exempts active duty military, disabled veterans, and para transit riders from the U-Pass program. Since these student populations receive a CTA/ RTA discounted/ free ride benefit, the U-Pass does not apply. The U-Pass team will make every effort to identify these students, but any student qualifying for one of these benefits is encouraged to email U-Pass at upass@luc.edu and self-identify.
  • Weekend Law is excluded from the U-Pass benefit.
  • SCPS students and programs are excluded from the U-Pass benefit.
  • Loyola University Chicago is bound by its contract with the Chicago Transit Authority to adhere to eligibility policies and activation/deativation dates and deadlines.

Use Policy

  • The U-Pass is for the issuing students' use ONLY. The pass cannot be transferred or sold. If this rule is violated, CTA will confiscate the pass and Loyola University Chicago will suspend the use the pass for the remainder of the academic year in which the confiscation occurred  (i.e. if the pass is confiscated in September, it would be suspended until August of the next year). 
  • If a pass becomes lost or stolen, we recommend all students file a police report and notify CTA and Loyola University Chicago immediately so that the pass can be deactivated. Many times a pass that is stolen/lost is confiscated by CTA under the assumption of fraudulent use. Please call to deactivate a lost/stolen pass as soon as possible to avoid this.
  • Replacement U-Passes can be ordered online at http://www.luc.edu/upass/replace

  • For Fall 2020, Replacement U-Passes will ONLY be able to be picked up at the Damen Student Center information desk on the Lake Shore Campus due to closures at Water Tower. The information desk is open 7am-12am, 7 days a week.

  • Please do not puncture, launder, or do anything to alter the card. The U-Pass is similar to a credit card and will cease to function if the pass is altered in the ways described.
  • If a card becomes damaged because of circumstances beyond a students' doing (i.e. cracks in cold weather, de-magnetize), students must visit Ventra Chicago Headquarters at 165 N. Jefferson Chicago, IL to request a waiver for the damaged fee. The student will receive a complimentary 7 day CTA pass, but will still need to order the pass at one of the (2) Service Locations at Loyola. 
  • We have noticed that student's that are NOT taking their U-Pass out of their wallets, etc. are sometimes having their debit/credit cards charged by the Ventra machine. In the event that you see a charge on your financial account from Ventra that you do not recognize, please contact Ventra and your financial institution. 
  • Please also be sure to keep your U-Pass separate from your student ID/Campus Card when you are scanning either card. The U-Pass will "override" the student ID and stop the machine from accurately scanning it.