iPRES 2023 Champaign -Urbana Travel Information

iPRES 2023 will be taking place in Champaign-Urbana, and we are working to make it as easy as possible for delegates to attend the conference. This page will be kept up to date with everything you need to know about local events, travel logistics and getting to Champaign-Urbana from Chicago or elsewhere


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Getting to Champaign-Urbana

The nearest airport is Willard Airport (CMI), located in Savoy, IL, just outside of Champaign-Urbana. The airport offers daily flights to and from Chicago, Dallas, and Charlotte, as well as connecting flights to other major cities. From the airport, you can take a taxi, shuttle, Uber, lyft, limousines, or rental car to your hotel and/or the conference venue.

Click here to find the current list of licensed taxicabs and limousines in Champaign-Urbana.

Greyhound and Megabus both offer service to Champaign-Urbana from other major cities in the region, including Chicago, St. Louis, and Indianapolis. The bus station is located in downtown Champaign-Urbana, and you can take a taxi, Uber, lyft, or public transportation to your hotel and/or the conference venue.

If you’re flying into Chicago, we recommend choosing O’Hare airport, and that you reserve a one-way trip to Champaign with Peoria Charter. Peoria Charter buses cost $42 one-way, take about 3 hours, and run 9 times daily from O’Hare and 3 times daily from Midway airport. Tickets are available for purchase starting 2 months from the date of travel.

Please note that Peoria Charter requires a US phone number to proceed with booking. For international travelers, please use 000-000-0000 to complete the booking process. 

There are three Champaign-Urbana stops:

Illinois Terminal  – Downtown Champaign, 45 E. University Ave. (South Platform)
Armory  – On Armory Avenue between 4th and 5th Street – across from the Ice Arena

ISR  – Illinois Street Residence Hall, In front of the Levis Faculty Building (919 W. Illinois St.)

We will provide detail on which stops are most conveniently located to area hotels soon.

Amtrak offers service to Champaign-Urbana from Chicago and other cities in the region: to search and book trains check out the Amtrak website.

Upon arrival in Champaign-Urbana the train station is located in downtown Champaign. You can take a taxi, shuttle, or MTD public transportation to your hotel and/or the conference venue.

A note of caution: Amtrak is convenient for those who will be leaving from Downtown Chicago. For Chicago airport arrivals, we strongly recommend using the Peoria Charter Bus.

There are three Amtrak trains from Chicago to Champaign daily and vice versa. Both Chicago airports have CTA stations inside the airport that get you close to the Amtrak station. Trains leave from Chicago Union Station, take 2.5 hours, and (as of March) cost under $20. 

More info on how to get to Chicago Union Train Station from Chicago airports here: https://ipres2023.us/chicago-travel-information.

Need a quick ride to get around? We’ve got Zipcars ready for you! With several pick-up points throughout Champaign County, including a convenient location at Illinois Terminal, you can use this car-sharing program for a few hours or all day. Zip in and explore!
Call 866-4ZlPCAR or visit zipcar.com/cu for more information.

You can also Uber or Lyft your way through the Champaign County area. Simply download the app and request your ride when ready!

If you plan to take part in the conference site visits in Chicago, then you’ll reserve your return trip through the conference. There will be a $40 fee and we will provide a separate reservation form for return buses. These will leave from the conference venue and will arrive in Chicago by 4pm, Friday September 22. Box lunches will be provided that day. These buses will not go to the airports! They will stop at the conference hotels in Chicago.

If you need to go right from the conference site to O’Hare or Midway airports, then you should use the regular Peoria Charter service linked above to go directly to the airport.

Events in Champaign-Urbana

Several exciting events are being planned! As more information becomes available, we will update this section accordingly. 

Arrangements in Champaign-Urbana

In order to benefit from our special rates, we strongly encourage guests to book their hotel of choice before August 5th, 2023. Please review booking details via our Accommodations page. 

Champaign-Urbana’s MTD buses are an easy way for navigating CU.

Paying your MTD fare is made easy on the go: on campus grounds the bus fare is free of charge, elsewhere every ride costs $1 with the possibility of transferring buses for free. 

We recommend using Google Maps or downloading the My Bus Helper app which provides accurate public transit directions and arrival times.