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Chicago Transportation Apps For The iPhone

If you need to get around in Chicago, the CTA El and CTA bus system provide a great way to get around. The El and bus system can be confusing for those not familiar with the city. The CTA does not provide any live train arrival information like many other cities do, but a train schedule is available for the apps. The great thing is that there are some fantastic apps to help you understand and use the Chicago’s public transportation. This AppGuide will help you find the best one.

Essential Apps

iTrans Chicago CTA

by iTrans

The essential app is iTrans Chicago CTA. The app has directions to the El stations, which is great for those new to the city. The app includes the train schedule and the CTA advisories. The app can also show you the stations right in the Google Maps app. The maps of the El are included for offline access. The app can also give you directions, which include the different transfers and walking directions you need to get to your destination. If you are looking for a great CTA El app, then this is the one we would recommend. There is also a bus version available.

Notable Apps

TransitGuru Chicago

by Toccata Technologies Inc.

TransitGuru Chicago is an app that covers more than just the El. This app will help you navigate using the CTA El Rail, CTA Bus, Metra Rail, and NICTD’s South Shore Line. The app includes all of the schedules offline and has a built in timer to wake you up before your stop. The app also lets you download your maps for offline use, which is great for iPod touch or low coverage iPhone users. The app is a great alternative to iTrans Chicago CTA because it does include all of the other transportation systems.

ChiTransit: CTA Bus and Train Tracker for Chicago

by Flying Cranes

ChiTransit is an app that combines CTA train schedules and GPS information for all of the CTA bus lines. The great thing about this app is the bus tracking: with this app you can actually see if the bus is close or if the El would be a better option. The app is bad if you need directions, but is excellent for those just needing bus location and train schedules.

Chicago Metro by Zuti

by Visual IT Ltd

Chicago Metro 10 is an app to help you with the bus and El system in Chicago. The app does track your GPS to let you know what the nearest stations are. The app is not as well designed as the other apps available. The app may be a choice for those familiar with the city, but for those that are new to the city we would recommend iTrans Chicago.

Embark Metra

by Embark, Inc.

Ride Metra provides an app for the Metra commuter rail system. The app is great for those needing a fantastic app just for this system. It is a different system than the El. The app includes a trip planner, station info, scheduled arrivals, service advisories, and great offline maps. The trip planner will even work offline. If you need an app for this system of transportation, then give this one a shot.

Decent Apps

iTransitBuddy - CTA Rail

by Blue Technology Solutions LLC

If there is an app to avoid, this would be it. The app is $0.99 a year for the service, the first year is included with your $0.99 app purchase. The app requires you to be very familiar with the El system. The app is simply terrible for any tourists or newbies to the city. The app also does not really provide directions that are useful. The app does include a favorites, searching ability, and a trip planner. Overall, this an app from which we would steer clear.

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