CHICAGO – It’s not the Polar Express, but it’s the next best thing! The CTA announced times and dates for it’s annual Holiday Train and Bus!

When does the CTA Holiday Train Run?

The 2022 Allstate CTA Holiday Train is set to roll onto the rails starting Friday Nov. 25, the day after Thanksgiving, and runs through late December.

According to the CTA website, The Green Line is first on the list with Friday Nov. 25 and Sat Nov 26. The Orange and Brown Lines follow on Wed Nov 30 through Sat Dec. 3.

This is the 31st year of operation for the beloved holiday tradition.

Each of the Holiday Train’s six cars will be decorated with festive holiday scenes, thousands of twinkling lights and sparkling LED signs.

Santa will wave to riders from his sleigh which will sit atop a decorated flatcar carrying his reindeer.

The CTA Holiday Train will travel along all “L” lines and stop at all stations along their respective routes to spread cheer to CTA customers of all ages.

Good boys and girls can find out where to board via the CTA Train Tracker. All they have to do is look for the candy cane icon which will give them an estimate on what time the Holiday Train may be getting to their neighborhood station.

When does the CTA Holiday Bus Run?

There’s more than one way to dash through the snow this holiday season.

The Allstate CTA Holiday Bus will be making spirits bright as it makes it way along 16 routes starting Tuesday Nov. 29.

Customers will see “Ralphie the Reindeer” outlined in festive lights on the exterior of the bus, and inside they’ll find a winter wonderland with holiday themed seating, lights, a miniature village, and of course Santa.

The 60-foot bus will also have holiday music playing and Santa will wave and greet good boys and girls from the roof hatch of the bus.

The Holiday Bus will travel along several CTA bus routes so riders are encouraged to track its whereabouts on the Holiday Bus Tracker.

What you need know about the CTA Holiday Train and Bus

Normal CTA fares apply for both the Holiday Train and Holiday Bus.

You can take photos with Santa while the train and bus are in service.

If on the Holiday Train, the CTA suggests you board the train first and then snap photos of Santa or the train when exiting at your destination.

If on the Holiday Bus, riders are encouraged to only take photos when the bus is stopped or before exiting through the rear doors.