Chicago O’Hare International Airport, the city’s primary international airport, features state-of-the-art facilities and services to help make each traveler’s stay more convenient.
As a top local and international hub, O’Hare offers travelers with standard airport facilities including modern elevators, restrooms, telephones and TTY phones, and dining and shopping establishments. It features accessible transportation options through its parking facilities, the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) Blue Line, and areas for car rentals and getting taxi cabs. It also offers additional facilities including travelers aid services, power stations, United Service Organizations (USO) services, ADA services, and animal relief areas.
Chicago O’Hare International Airport: 10000 West O’Hare, Chicago, IL, 60666; 773-686-3700
Travelers Aid at O’Hare
For anyone needing assistance during their stay travel to Chicago, the Travelers Aid Office at the Terminal 2 of O’Hare, right across the Children’s Museum, offers information, directions, and special assistance to both foreign and domestic travelers. This office is open from Mondays to Fridays, from 8:30 a.m. to 9:00 p.m., and from Saturdays to Sundays, from 10:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. There are information booths that are also available in various locations around the airport. Passengers may also reach the Travelers Aid Office by phone at 773-894-2427 or online by visiting the Travelers Aid website.
Guide to Airport Terminals and Cargo Carriers at the Chicago O’Hare International Airport
The Chicago Airport System provides a number of Power Stations at O’Hare. This type of facility is located throughout the terminals of the airport and each unit has a wheelchair accessible workstation.
The seated workstations have counter space and AC outlets for travelers to conveniently recharge their electronic devices including laptops, mobile phones, MP3 players, and other portable media devices free of charge.
Locations of Power Stations
Terminal 1, Concourse B at B5
Terminal 1, Concourse B at B19
Terminal 1, Concourse B at B11
Terminal 1, Concourse B at B14-B15
Terminal 1, Concourse C at C15
Terminal 1, Concourse C at C21
Terminal 2, Concourse E at E4
Terminal 3, Concourse H at Gate H5
Terminal 3, Concourse H at Gate H13
Terminal 3, Concourse K at Gate K4
Terminal 3, Concourse K at Gate K9
The United Service Organizations
The United Service Organizations, Inc. (USO) provides a variety of services for active military personnel and their dependents whenever they are traveling at O’Hare. The USO at O’Hare is located at the T-2 Mezzanine Level, before the security checkpoint. The USO O’Hare phone number is 773-686-7396. Services and amenities available to military personnel and their dependents include free refreshments, travel information, and referrals.
O’Hare provides a new and improved 24-hour center for men, women, and families of the Armed Forces needing a place to rest, relax, enjoy a meal, check email, and make phone calls before returning home or being deployed. The USO also implements a variety of programs and services for the comfort of troops and their families.
There is a nearby navy base from O’Hare, specifically at Great Lakes, Illinois. This makes O’Hare a primary hub for families and friends attending the Great Lakes Naval Base Graduation Ceremony for those graduating from the U.S. Navy Bootcamp.
The elevators at Terminals 1, 2, 3, and 5 offer convenient access to all passenger levels of the airport complex. All elevators are equipped with Braille and raised numerals.
O’Hare has a number of restrooms located throughout the airport complex. They all have wheelchair-accessible facilities. There are family and companion restroom facilities available as well.
Telephone and TTY Phones
A number of telephone booths are located throughout the airport. There are hook-ups for operator-assisted Teletypewriters (TTY) at the lower level of Terminals 1, 2, and 3 and the upper level of Terminal 5. All phone facilities are available 24 hours a day.
Dining and Shopping
Restaurants and shopping establishments abound for travelers who want to dine out and shop around either before or after their flights.
O’Hare provides the following parking facilities with hundreds of accessible parking spaces: elevated parking structure (Lot A); adjacent outdoor lots (Lots B and C); parking lot serving the International Terminal (Lot D); and Economy Lots E and F. Travelers needing more information can call the Parking Information Hotline at 773-686-7530.
Public Transportation/CTA Rapid Transit
The Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) Blue Line train offers service between downtown Chicago and O’Hare. The CTA station provides an elevator that also takes passengers with mobility impairments to and from the platform. For more information about this service and for a more detailed information about the Blue Line hours of service, travelers may call: 1-312-836-7000 or 1-312-836-4949 (TTY).
General travelers can also take advantage of the free, 24-hour rail system called the Airport Transit System (ATS), a quick, convenient, and economical way to get around the airport. It services the three domestic terminals, the international terminal, the long-term parking, the Metra station, and the PACE stop.
For specific information when traveling between O’Hare and Midway airports, you may read:
Transportation Guide: Traveling Between Chicago O’Hare International Airport and Chicago Midway International Airport
Car rentals are readily accessible from O’Hare. Popular options include Alamo, Avis, Budget, Dollar, Hertz, and National Car Rental. These rental car agencies also provide hand-controlled vehicles for persons with mobility impairments. These agencies request notification of two to three days before the renting of a car with adaptive equipment.
Taxi cabs are available on a first come, first served basis. Taxis are available at the lower level curbfront of all terminals. Those in a budget may get the shared ride service also available within the airport. As of 2010, taxi cabs usually cost about $35 to $40 from O’Hare to downtown Chicago. For those requiring wheelchair accessible vehicles, they can see the cab starters at the cab stand outside the baggage claim areas located in all the terminals. Wheelchair accessible vehicles are also available by calling United Dispatch Taxi Cabs at 1-800-281-4466. For a list of available taxi cab operators and their contact details, you may check out the Chicago Department of Aviation webpage for “Taxi Cabs and Limousines.”
O’Hare offers ADA-friendly services to make its airport system easily accessible for all travelers. To provide a safer and more convenient travel for passengers needing additional assistance, the Chicago Department of Aviation (CDA) created the Disability Awareness & Assistance Program.
The Purple Airplane
As getting from one point to another at any airport can be challenging, especially for travelers with disabilities, O’Hare features the Purple Airplane program where a Purple Airplane symbol designates travelers and families with disabilities with the assistance they need at O’Hare. Those with stickers can get the services they need through staff and security personnel trained in recognizing the symbol and how to work with travelers needing assistance.
The Purple Airplane image can be downloaded from the airport’s website by simply right clicking the image from the webpage and selecting the “Save Picture As” function in the computer. Once saved, print the Purple Airplane image on a label, preferably using a 2.5-inch round label available from any local office supply store or online store. Follow the directions included with the labels prior to printing. Label manufacturers typically have websites with templates to guide people when printing their labels.
All outside sidewalks around O’Hare have sloping curb cuts for easy wheelchair access. All establishments throughout the airport including restrooms, elevators, signage, drinking fountains, telephones, restaurants, and diaper changing facilities comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act. Airlines also provide wheelchair assistance to passengers who are sick or have mobility problems. It is best to contact the airline in advance to make prior requests and arrangements.
Airport Transit System (ATS)
All points within the ATS route system are fully accessible to travelers with disabilities. There are elevators available at each of the five stops around O’Hare.
Animal Relief Areas
Animal relief areas are available from the curbside on the lower levels of Terminals 1 and 5. Accessible at all times, these are gated areas designated to service animal relief. Animals must always be accompanied and leashed by their owners.
“Airport Maps,” Chicago Department of Aviation.
“The United Service Organizations,” Chicago Department of Aviation.
“Travelers Aid at O’Hare,” Chicago Department of Aviation.
“Power Stations,” Chicago Department of Aviation.
“O’Hare ADA Friendly Services,” Chicago Department of Aviation.
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