How To Get a Ventra Card Refund

iEditorial Note: These blog posts represent the opinion of DoNotPay’s Writers, but each person’s situation and circumstances vary greatly. As a result, you should make sure to do your own independent research. Because everyone is unique, our self-help tools are never guaranteed to help with any specific situation. DoNotPay is not a law firm and is not licensed to practice law. DoNotPay provides a platform for legal information and self-help.

Saying Goodbye to the Windy City? Secure a Ventra Card Refund With DoNotPay!

The Ventra card is a contactless smart card used as a part of the electronic fare payment system for the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) and Pace. It is based on radio-frequency identification (RFID) and comes together with the Ventra App that allows you to:

  • Add passes and value on your Ventra Card
  • Get balance alerts and notifications
  • Buy and use Metra mobile tickets
  • See real-time arrivals for CTA, Pace, and Metra

Ventra was introduced in 2013, and the full transition occurred in 2014, permanently replacing the Chicago Card.

Ventra Refund Policy Explained

Getting a refund once you deposit funds on the Ventra card is a challenge. How difficult it is to get any money back from the provider is illustrated by the fact that Ventra vending machines don’t provide change. If you overpay, the surplus will be used as Transit Value.

Their User Agreement page states that refunds are not possible except in two situations:

  • If you move out of the State of Illinois
  • In case of death

The Ventra card users who are relocating can request a refund of the remaining Transit Value on a registered Ventra card only if the minimum balance on the card is $10. The approved refund is mailed to the user’s new address. The request must include proper documentation that proves relocation such as:

  • Utility bill
  • Car or home insurance card that has the new address
  • Property tax bill
  • Vehicle registration form
  • Tenant lease

In case of death, an authorized representative of the estate may request a refund for the remaining Transit Value amount and close the account when they provide supporting documents.

If there was an issue during the top-up process due to malfunctioning Ventra equipment (you were charged, but it was not reflected on your Ventra card), you must reach out to their customer support within four calendar days. Your request for an account adjustment should include:

  • The location of the equipment
  • The train station or bus route
  • Date and time of the incident

Lost, Stolen, and Damaged Ventra Cards

In case of stolen, lost, or damaged Ventra cards that were properly registered, you can request a replacement card but not a refund. Any remaining balance will be transferred from the old to the replacement card after registration. You can pick up the new card if you visit the Ventra Customer Service Center at 567 W. Lake St, Chicago, or wait for it to arrive in the mail within seven to ten business days.

Replacement Ventra cards come with a $5 non-refundable fee, except when they’re issued for damaged cards. The $5 fee will be void only if the damage was not caused by improper handling or customer misuse, and if the card hasn’t been activated yet.

DoNotPay Can Help You Secure a Ventra Card Refund

If you think that Ventra’s refund policy is not fair, and you don’t have the strength to wage war on their customer support, DoNotPay has a solution for you. In case you don’t plan to use your card anymore, but it still has funds on it, you should try to get your money back any way you can.

Requesting refunds by using our app is simple and straightforward:

  1. Set up your DoNotPay account in a
  2. Log in and hit File a Chargeback
  3. Give us basic information about your bank and the Ventra charge on your credit card
  4. Confirm your identity and hit Submit

When you’re done with our short questionnaire, the service will prepare a custom-made dispute letter and send it to your bank. In case your card issuer requires more support, we will prepare a compendium of relevant Visa and MasterCard codes and rules that will increase your chances of winning the dispute even more.

Our chargeback methods rely on the Fair Credit Billing Act of 1974, which allows customers to dispute credit card charges within 60 days from the purchase.

How To Get a Ventra Card Refund the Harder Way

If you don’t use DoNotPay, you will have to go through Ventra’s customer service. The available methods for contacting Ventra customer support are listed in the table below:

Can you request a refund via

Yes / No








In Person


Requesting a Ventra Card Refund Over the Phone

If you want to brave the long calls with customer support representatives, you can request a Ventra card refund over the phone:

  1. Prepare the information that the customer support agents might need, including your contact details and the card serial number
  2. Dial 1-877-NOW-VENTRA (1-877-669-8368) to reach the Ventra Customer Call Center
  3. Use DoNotPay to cut the waiting time and jump the queue since the odds are you won’t be the first in line
  4. Explain your situation to the agent and request your money back

Ventra Customer Call Center is open Monday through Friday from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. CST, and on Saturdays from 8.30 a.m. to 5 p.m. CST.

Requesting a Ventra Card Refund Online

While this is not the official way to ask for your money back from Ventra, customer support can be reached in this manner as well:

  1. Open the Contact Us page
  2. Fill out the contact form
  3. Select the most appropriate topic from the drop-down menu
  4. Write a concise message asking for a refund
  5. Click on Submit

Your message should be succinct and to the point because it is limited to 2,000 characters only.

Requesting a Ventra Card Refund In Person

Ventra has a service center office located at 567 W. Lake Street, 2nd floor, Chicago, IL 60661. You can visit the center during their working hours, talk to a representative, and request a refund for the remaining Ventra card balance.

The center is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4.30 p.m. CST.

Potential Problems With Ventra Card Refunds

Besides having a strict refund policy, Ventra could cost you money if you don’t request a refund for the remaining balance on your card. As stated in their Terms and Conditions, your Ventra card will be charged a recurring dormancy fee of $5 if your account is inactive for more than 18 months in a row.

The balance on your card will be reduced accordingly every month until it reaches zero.

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