26 of Chicago’s Top Tourist Attractions Collaborate on New Ticketing Option Customizable Pass to Chicago

Boston, MA — The Field Museum, John Hancock Observatory, the Museum of Science and Industry, Shedd Aquarium, SkyDeck Chicago, and 20 more of Chicago’s top tourist draws have all come together on a new, customizable common ticketing platform. The new system allows visitors to Chicago to build a custom ticket that covers as many of [...]




Boston, MA — The Field Museum, John Hancock Observatory, the Museum of Science and Industry, Shedd Aquarium, SkyDeck Chicago, and 20 more of Chicago’s top tourist draws have all come together on a new, customizable common ticketing platform. The new system allows visitors to Chicago to build a custom ticket that covers as many of the 26 attractions as they wish to see, all for a discounted price compared to standard ticketing options.

The new system features an online “configurator” where a customer makes his or her selections. Each selection is added to a running tally that shows the names of the attractions chosen, a dynamically updated price for the combined selections, and the savings compared to buying each ticket separately.

Once finished making their choices, the customer checks out online and a smart card is coded with their selected attractions and shipped to them. The customer then uses the smart card — called a “Custom Chicago Explorer Pass” — as their entry ticket to each of the attractions they had coded onto the card.

Each of the 26 Chicago-area attractions have smart card readers that allow them to accept the cards for admission. The program has been running for several months in a beta mode with several thousand visits already having been made using the new system.

“For the visitor coming to Chicago, being able to build your own custom pass to everything you want to see is compelling,” said Carey Randall, Director of Sales and Marketing at the John Hancock Observatory. “It’s a big change from how things have gone up until now. With all the pieces in place and running smoothly, we are excited to move forward with this new approach to ticketing and admissions.”

The configurator is available at www.BuildYourOwnTicket.com

Smart Destinations is the company that built and manages the system for the attractions, both the back end ticketing platform as well as the front end-configurator.

“We’re very excited to be working with such world-class partners,” says Cecilia Dahl, president and founder of Smart Destinations. “The fact that all of them came together in this way is pretty amazing. Clearly having all of them on one platform reinforces the benefits for each individual partner. For the customer, it creates a uniquely powerful way to take advantage of the breadth of Chicago’s museums, tours, and sights.”

Smart Destinations is working with the attractions in other destinations to roll out similar offerings in Boston, Chicago, Las Vegas, Maui, Miami, New York City, Oahu, Orlando, San Diego, and San Francisco, with more destinations on the way.

About Smart Destinations

Smart Destinations is the premier provider of unlimited admission sightseeing passes in 15 major North American travel destinations from Oahu to Boston. The Smart Destinations’ ticketing system encompasses over 425 museums, attractions and tours, aggregating them in each destination onto fixed price, multi-admission products, resulting in up to 50% savings compared to buying separate tickets. The combination of savings and convenience has resulted in 94% customer satisfaction as measured by 3rd party research and helped the company rank 78 on Inc. Magazine’s 2008 list of the 500 fastest growing companies. Distributed through major travel services in 25 countries as well as on the Web, Smart Destinations’ products are a “trusted companion” for the best a destination has to offer at an unbeatable price point. For more information on the company and its products, visit www.smartdestinations.com.