The Art Institute of Chicago extends free admission to members of our community through several avenues.
RESERVE ONLINE IN ADVANCE
Free Admission for Illinois Residents
Admission was free for Illinois residents on weekdays (Mondays, Thursdays, and Fridays) January 9–March 24, 2023.
Our next free hours will be Free Thursday Evenings, 5–8 p.m., May 18–August 31, 2023.
If you reserve your free tickets online in advance, your resident status will be verified using the zip code associated with the billing address provided. If you’re unable to reserve tickets in advance, please stop by the admissions desks on the day of your visit for assistance.
NO ADVANCE TICKET REQUIRED
The following groups are invited to visit our galleries at no cost every day—even when museum admission tickets are sold out.
In order to receive your free admission benefits, simply show the corresponding identification at the admissions desk in either museum lobby. Free admission benefits are not single use—you are welcome to use them any time you would like to visit. Be sure to inquire about the availability of special exhibition tickets when you check in at the admissions counter.
Kids under 14
Admission is always free for children under 14. These free tickets are available online as well as on-site at the admissions counters.
Museum admission is free for Chicago teens under the age of 18, thanks to the extraordinary generosity of Glenn and Claire Swogger and the Redbud Foundation. See more opportunities and resources for teens.
As part of the Blue Star Museums program, active-duty service members receive free admission all year long. Plus, from Armed Forces Day through Labor Day, we also welcome service members and their households. Please bring your active-duty military ID to the admissions counter to receive this benefit.
LINK and WIC Cardholders
As part of Museums for All, LINK and WIC cardholders and anyone in their households receive free general admission to the museum and all ticketed special exhibitions. Simply present your card along with a valid photo ID.
Free admission is available to current Illinois educators, including pre-K–12 teachers, teaching artists working in schools, and homeschool parents. Educators can register online to receive a voucher for a complimentary ticket to the museum. This voucher must be presented—as a printed document or on a smartphone—with a valid educator ID at one of the museum’s admission counters. Learn more about requesting complimentary educator admission.
Kids Museum Passport
Sponsored by the 15 Museums Work for Chicago institutions, this program allows individuals with a Chicago Public Library card to check out a pass for free general admission to the Art Institute. Please note the following parameters for use of the Kids Museum Passport:
Each pass admits a maximum of four people for general admission—at least one child under the age of 18 and a maximum of two adults. Ticketed exhibitions and activities are not included and must be purchased separately.
Students of colleges and universities in the University Partner Program are entitled to free general and special exhibition admission by showing a valid student ID at the ticket counter. Check the full list of partnering colleges and universities.
Employees of certain companies in the Corporate Partner Program are entitled to free general and special exhibition admission by showing proof of employment at the ticket counter. Learn more about the Corporate Partner Program.
Check the full list of Corporate Partner companies whose employees are entitled to free admission.