You might have heard about the Willis Tower. Repeatedly touted as “a must” for both visitors and residents, the views from high atop the 110 story building is truly a magnificent experience with vantage points into not one or two, but four (4!) states. Couple this with a glass ledge allowing you to walk out into the rarefied air (and thus giving you the feeling that you’re suspended oh-so precariously over the city of Chicago below) and you’ve got quite the tourist draw.
The Willis Tower’s observation deck, also known as Skydeck, draws quite the line. Skipping lines at the Willis Tower is a trick within itself, but it can be done. After all, who wouldn’t want to just pop into the tallest building in the western hemisphere?
First things first, the Skydeck (the observation deck) is open daily, 365 days a year, so the lines will be generally be shorter on weekdays and earlier in the morning. Having said this, standing in line for hours is a bummer, but luckily there is another, sure-fire option: Buy your Willis Tower tickets in advance. This is really a no-brainer. Stand in line for hours or skip the lines, walk right in, and head up to the top for no additional charge. Shows you what a little forethought will garner, eh?
Also possible is the Chicago CityPASS which includes a Fast Pass ticket to the Skydeck Chicago and five other attractions. This is definitely a great option – especially for all you budget travelers. It helps you get the most of your day and you won’t find a better deal – I’ve tried.
All in all, the old saying of “the earlier the better” is another trick to skip lines at the Willis Tower, but follow any of the above advice and you’ll do just fine. Just remember that the lines are there for a reason – it really is a great view from up above!
The Skydeck at the Willis Tower is open April through September from 9am-10pm and October through March from 10am-8pm.