Willis Tower vs. Hancock Center: From Parking To The Pinnacle
With no great difference in view (both structures offer 360-degree views that claim to show four states) or price (Hancock is $3.50 cheaper), what other elements should one consider when choosing which to go to? The Willis Tower has the prestige of being the tallest building in the United States, so many opt for the Skydeck. Unfortunately, this creates massive lines. The John Hancock Observatory line is normally just 10 to 30 minutes long. You can also skip the line at the Willis Tower by purchasing a “Fast Pass,” but it’ll cost $35.
With basically all else being equal, travelers would be wise to choose the Observatory for a quick route to the scenic view.
But don’t let your trip to either of these landmarks be ruined by a parking crisis. The John Hancock Center building itself offers on-site parking for $10 if you are in and out in 3 hours. It is a good deal but be aware that normal rates apply if you go beyond 3 hours because the price will be much higher.
If you shoot for the Willis Tower you can find an official lot across the street, but fees can run upwards of $20. Street parking is sometimes available near the building, but via metered parking which caps parking with a two-hour limit.
The best way to plan a trip is to reserve your parking ahead of time so you don’t waste time looking for a space to park. You can find great John Hancock parking and Willis Tower parking at ParkWhiz.com.