Willis Tower, also popularly known as the Sears Tower, topped the chart of the world’s tallest buildings in 1973 the year in which its construction got completed and opened to the public. This Chicago’s skyscraper is now the 23rd tallest building the world and the third tallest building in the United States. Now, let’s see some of the frequently asked questions about the Willis Tower.
Willis Tower is mostly used as an office space. There are 100+ businesses that have their offices in this tower. Thanks to the amazing architecture it has become a famous travel spot that attracts tens of thousands of tourists from across the world.
The current official name is Willis Tower. Previously, it was called by the name Sears Tower. After the Willis Group took over the ownership in 2009, the name got changed to Willis Tower. However, many people still call it the Sears Tower.
The cost of admission for children is $18 and for adults – it is $26. If you want to skip the line on a busy day, you can opt for the Fast Pass that will cost you $75. Another pass called Day/Night Pass which is priced at $45 per person will give you access to the Skydeck twice in a day.
It usually takes around 45 min to 1 hour on a normal day. But during the Summer, the season in which the Willis Tower gets a heavy footfall, you’ll have to wait for at least 1 1/2 hours in order to reach the Skydeck i.e. 103rd floor. Whereas in the Winter season, you can complete your Willis Tower tour in just 15 to 30 minutes.
No. You cannot go up in the Willis Tower for free. Adults have to pay for a general admission ticket that is priced at $26 while children (under ages 12) should pay $18. Only children under 3 years will be given free access to the Skydeck.
No. 360 Chicago is better than Willis Tower. Because, the views from the observation deck of 360 Chicago are simply superb compared to that of the Willis Tower.
With some amazing views of the beautiful Lake Michigan and Navy Pier, John Hancock (currently 360 Chicago) is better than Willis Tower in my opinion. However, the Willis Tower will make you go awe! with its glass balcony.
Yeah. The Willis Tower Skydeck is completely safe. The glass balconies are made in such a way that they can withstand over 4,500 kgs of weight. So, it’s perfectly alright to stand on them and view the amazing Chicago city.
No. It’s not free. There is an admission fee of $26 for adults and $18 for children. It’s free for children under 3.
If you are talking about the glass ledge, the maximum you can stay in it is 60 seconds. However, if you are on a tour with four or more people, the time limit is 90 seconds.
The main difference between Skydeck Chicago and 360 Chicago is the views they offer. And of course, the price also matters. 360 Chicago will let you experience the extraordinary views of Lake Michigan and also the Navy Pier whereas the Skydeck will give you an amazing view of the city without a lakeside.
In terms of pricing, 360 Chicago is the clear winner. When you buy its tickets online, it will only cost you $22.50 per adult and $13.50 per child. On the other hand, Skydeck is priced at $18 for children and $26 for adults.
Yes, there’s a bar on the 33rd floor called the Tower House which is not open to the general public. On the 66th and 67th floors, there’s a restaurant called Metropolitan. You can dine at this awesome restaurant during your visit to the Willis Tower.
You can go up to the 103rd floor of the Sears Tower. This floor is popularly called by the name Skydeck.
Skydeck is better at night. Because, at night, you will get to see the awesome lights of the Chicago city. If you visit the Skydeck after 5 in the evening, you will be able to capture the beautiful sunset on your phone standing on the glass ledge.
Not completely but the cracks appeared on the protective layer of the glass ledge. The cracks appeared two times once in 2014 and most recently in 2019. However, it’s just the coating that got cracked and not the actual glass.
The elevator ride is very fast than you think. It just takes about 60 to 90 seconds to reach the top of Willis Tower i.e. the 103rd floor where the observation deck is present. However, you will have to wait to get into the elevator.
No. Willis Tower is a tall building with 110+ floors in it. And, Skydeck is the name of the 103rd floor in this skyscraper. Also known as Skydeck Chicago, you will find an observation deck on this floor from which you will get to experience the extraordinary views of the Chicago city.
There’s a bar on the 33rd floor called Tower House. On the 67th floor, there’s a restaurant called The Metropolitan.
The Metropolitan is the only restaurant in Willis Tower as per my knowledge. It’s on the 67th floor. You can take advantage of the Skydeck Chicago’s Restuarant service instead of stepping into this restaurant.
The breakfast service will cost you $125 per person. With this, you can have breakfast sitting in the ledge which will become a wonderful moment that you can cherish for a lifetime.
You can have lunch on the 99th floor. This service is priced at $80 per person which also includes admission to the Skydeck with a fast entry that helps you skip the lines.
There is also a VIP Dinner Service with which you can enjoy a meal served by Giordano’s Pizza sitting inside the ledge on the Skydeck. This service will cost you $100 per person.
It’s not mandatory. But, booking tickets in advance will make it easy for you to schedule your tour and also due to the limited availability of tickets. Buying tickets online is the best way to skip the line at the ticket counter and to avoid any last minute hurdles.
The Skydeck Chicago’s glass ledge can hold a weight of up to 4,500 Kilograms or 10,000 pounds. It can withstand a pressure of 5 tons.
The ledge is made of glass with a thickness of 1.5-inch. It’s safe to stand on the ledge and check out the amazing views.
There’s no particular weight limit for Skydeck Chicago. The ledge can withstand a weight of 10,000 pounds.
Yes if you are visiting the Willis Tower during the peak season. In Summer, Fast Pass is really worth it and in Winter, as there will be no heavy crowds, it’s not worth it.
In 2009, a highly popular insurance broker company called the Willis Group bought the naming rights of the Sears Tower. From then on, the tower is being called the Willis Tower. However, a lot of people still call it by the name Sears Tower.
5 people died buidling Sears Tower. This happened during its construction in 1973.
Yes, it can sway up to 3 feet (approx. 1 meter). But, the average sway that you can feel is 6 inches (approx. 0.1 meters).
Different colors of the Willis Tower indicate different meanings. There are two antennas on the top of the Willis Tower that illuminate different colors during occasions. Purple light in November may indicate the Pancreatic Cancer Awareness day. In January 2020, the Willis Tower lit Purple in the honor of Kobe Bryant.
Orange color in October may indicate Halloween.
Pink color in February indicates the Valentines day.
Red color in July indicates the United States Independence Day.
Green color in April indicates the Earth Day.
Blue color in April indicates Autism awareness.
Yellow color indicates December Holidays.