Getting from St. Louis to Chicago

Chicago and St. Louis are well-connected by a variety of transportation options. While flying is the quickest, it is usually the most expensive. Driving or taking the bus or train are much cheaper, but will take longer. The drive is all highway and through mostly farmlands – in other words, it’s not worth taking the bus or train just for the views. If you have the money or are in a hurry, flying is the better option.

St. Louis to Chicago

  • Driving distance – 298 miles/479 kilometers


Delta, United, Southwest, American, Continental, and several other airlines offer frequent service from St. Louis to Chicago. Booking further in advance can help you find cheap tickets to Chicago, though the cost is usually pretty low year-round, except for during holiday times.

Journey time: about 1 hour
Typical price: $80 to $150 round-trip per person


Amtrak connects Chicago to St. Louis with several runs per day. The trains are comfortable and the ride is an easy, pleasant one.

Journey time: About 5 hours.


Megabus operates three to five buses per day between Chicago and St. Louis. The buses are double-deckers and offer free wi-fi onboard. The bus stops for a 30-minute break for food and stops in between the two cities and tickets generally cost about $20-$30 each way.

Journey time: About 5 hours.


The drive between Chicago and St. Louis is all highway and passes through southern Illinois on the way to Missouri. The total mileage between the two cities is just under 300 miles.

Journey time: 4.5- 5 hours.

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