Hello from Chicago –

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I am writing you today as I am returning from a one-day business/play trip to the Windy City. I have often overlooked Chicago on my list of favorite cities because it is so close to where I live. However the more I visit Chicago the more I think it is truly one of the USA’s top 5 cities to visit. I rate them #1 New York City, #2 Washington D.C., #3 San Francisco, #4 Chicago and #5 Boston.

Hamilton may be the top Broadway Musical of our time –

This is my second time visiting Chicago this month as just a few weeks ago I hosted a group who came to see the Broadway musical “Hamilton”. Ticket prices are crazy high for this show as they range from $165 to $500 and more. The show is moving around the country and will be in cities like Omaha and others in 2018. After seeing the show you have a special appreciation for our country’s founding fathers and our constitution. Here are my top 10 Broadway musicals of all time;

10. The Sound of Music
9. Fiddler on the Roof
8. Lion King
7. Westside Story
6. The Wizard of Oz
5. Memphis
4. The Phantom of the Opera
3. Mamma Mia
2. Hamilton
1. Les Miserables

Plus 11 more that I could not leave off the list: Rent, Oklahoma, Wicked, Chicago, Oliver, Jersey Boys, the Book of Mormon, Hairspray, Miss Saigon, Showboat, and Jesus Christ Superstar. Let me know if I have left anything off my list that you think needs to be added.

Chicago TSA PreCheck lines no longer require a boarding pass –

This morning when I went through the TSA PreCheck line the agent said they were testing a new system that no longer required travelers to present a boarding pass only a government issued I.D. This saves a lot of time. Let’s hope it catches on.

Steve’s Travel Tip # 103 –

When departing from Chicago O’Hare and flying on United Airlines instead of getting dropped off at terminal 1 (where all the UA travelers are) simply get dropped off at terminal 2. This is the terminal with the smaller United regional jets. The lines are amazingly short and it is an easy walk back to terminal 1. This will allow you to avoid the long lines and security of terminal 1.

Chicago traffic is so bad that taking the train to/from Chicago O’Hare is often faster and cheaper –

Every year the traffic in Chicago gets worse and worse. It is now to the point that if you are going downtown during the morning or afternoon commute, you need to factor in spending 1 to 2 hours on the road. Compare that to the easy peasy 50-minute train ride that costs about $5. A taxi will cost about $45 plus tip. Uber can range from $30 to $55 depending on the size of the vehicle. If you fly Southwest Airlines from Midway Airport the taxi cabs take about 35 minutes and cost about $30 and the train is about $3.

Taxi cabs lines at Chicago O’Hare are the reason someone started Uber –

Nothing is so unorganized and frustrating than waiting in the taxi line at the ORD airport for long periods of time when no taxis show up. All the time knowing that there are hundreds of taxis waiting in a holding lot not able to come pick up people because of the Chicago airport bureaucracy. 9 out of 10 times it is faster taking an Uber from ORD than a taxi. Let’s face it, if the taxi’s provided safe, clean and efficient service, there would probably be no Uber.

 

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