The best times to visit Chicago for ideal weather are

April 30th to July 1st

based on average temperature and humidity from NOAA (the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration). Read below for more weather and travel details.


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Weather in Chicago

Temperature

Average temperatures in Chicago vary an incredible amount. Considering humidity, temperatures feel cold for about half of the year and otherwise nice with a chance of rain or snow throughout most of the year. The area is less temperate than some — in the 28th percentile for pleasant weather — compared to tourist destinations worldwide. Weeks with ideal weather are listed above. If you’re looking for the very warmest time to visit Chicago, the hottest months are July, August, and then June. See average monthly temperatures below. The warmest time of year is generally mid July where highs are regularly around 86.9°F (30.5°C) with temperatures rarely dropping below 69.4°F (20.8°C) at night.

Chicago Temperatures (Fahrenheit)

Key
High
Average
Low

Chicago Temperatures (Celsius)

Key
High
Average
Low

“Feels-Like” Temperatures

The way we experience weather isn’t all about temperature. Higher temperatures affect us much more at higher humidity, and colder temperatures feel piercing with high winds. Our perceived temperatures factor in humidity and wind chill to better represent how hot or cold the day feels to a person.

Chicago Perceived Temperature (F)

Key
High
Average
Low

Chicago Perceived Temperature (C)

Key
High
Average
Low

 

Average Chicago Temperatures by Month

Daily highs (averaged for the month) usually give the best indication of the weather. A significantly lower mean and low generally just means it gets colder at night.

Show Fahrenheit

Month Avg. High (°F) Avg. Mean (°F) Avg. Low (°F)
Jan 32.5 24.6 17.8
Feb 33.3 25.3 18.8
Mar 49.3 39.7 32.3
Apr 61.2 50.2 41.4
May 73.8 62.2 52.7
Jun 81.9 71.4 62.3
Jul 85.5 76 67.3
Aug 83.7 74.6 66.3
Sep 77.1 67.3 58.8
Oct 64.9 55.2 46.8
Nov 51.1 42.4 35
Dec 38.4 31.3 25.2

Show Celsius

Month Avg. High (°C) Avg. Mean (°C) Avg. Low (°C)
Jan 0.3 -4.1 -7.9
Feb 0.7 -3.7 -7.3
Mar 9.6 4.3 0.2
Apr 16.2 10.1 5.2
May 23.2 16.8 11.5
Jun 27.7 21.9 16.8
Jul 29.7 24.4 19.6
Aug 28.7 23.7 19.1
Sep 25.1 19.6 14.9
Oct 18.3 12.9 8.2
Nov 10.6 5.8 1.7
Dec 3.6 -0.4 -3.8


 

Precipitation (Rain or Snow)

If dry weather is what you’re after, the months with the lowest chance of significant precipitation in Chicago are January, February, and then November. Note that we define “significant precipitation” as .1 inches or more in this section. The lowest chance of rain or snow occurs around mid January. For example, on the week of January 15th there are no days of precipitation on average. By contrast, it’s most likely to rain or snow in late April with an average of 3 days of significant precipitation the week of April 23rd.

When can you find snow in Chicago? Weather stations report large amounts of snow likely to be deepest around February, especially close to late January and early February. The best time to ski (if at all) in Chicago is often around around December 17th when fresh powder is deepest. Please note that a value of 0 for snow in the graph below may either mean there was no snow, or that snow is unreported.

Chanceof Precipitation

The graph below shows the % chance of rainy and snowy days in Chicago.

Key
Days with precipitation

Snow on the Ground

The graph below shows the average snow on the ground in Chicago (in).

Key
Snow depth

Average Rain and Snow by Month

Show Inches

Month Daily Chance of Rain Average Snow Depth (in) Total Precipitation (in)
Jan 11% 3.1 1.6
Feb 14% 4.6 1.6
Mar 16% 2.3 1.9
Apr 27% 1.2 3.6
May 24% 0 4.1
Jun 32% 0 5.3
Jul 18% 0 3.5
Aug 24% 0 5.2
Sep 20% 0 3
Oct 22% 0 3
Nov 16% 2.1 2.2
Dec 20% 2.8 2.3

Show Centimeters

Month Daily Chance of Rain Average Snow Depth (cm) Total Precipitation (cm)
Jan 11 7.9 4.1
Feb 14 11.7 4.1
Mar 16 5.8 4.8
Apr 27 3 9.1
May 24 0 10.4
Jun 32 0 13.5
Jul 18 0 8.9
Aug 24 0 13.2
Sep 20 0 7.6
Oct 22 0 7.6
Nov 16 5.3 5.6
Dec 20 7.1 5.8

 

Humidity and Wind

Chicago has some slightly muggy months, with moderately humid months on the other side of the year. The least humid month is April (49.3% relative humidity), and the most humid month is December (65.4%).

Wind in Chicago is usually moderate. The windiest month is April, followed by January and March. April’s average wind speed of around 9.8 knots (11.2 MPH or 18.1 KPH) is considered “a gentle breeze.” Maximum sustained winds (the highest speed for the day lasting more than a few moments) are at their highest in early to mid April where average top sustained speeds reach 17.5 knots, which is considered a fresh breeze.

Relative Humidity (%)

The graph below shows the average % humidity by month in Chicago.

Key
Avg. Relative Humidity

Wind

The graph below shows wind speed (max and average) in knots.

Key
Max Sustained Wind
Average Daily Wind

Average Wind Speeds

Show Wind Speeds

All wind speeds are in knots. 1 knot = 1.15 MPH or 1.85 KPH.

Month Avg. Wind Avg. Wind Feel Sustained High Wind High Wind Feel
Jan 9.3 Gentle breeze 15.5 Significant breeze
Feb 9.1 Gentle breeze 15.5 Significant breeze
Mar 9.2 Gentle breeze 15.4 Significant breeze
Apr 9.8 Gentle breeze 17 Strong breeze
May 8.5 Gentle breeze 15.6 Significant breeze
Jun 7.7 Gentle breeze 15.4 Significant breeze
Jul 7.1 Gentle breeze 14.2 Significant breeze
Aug 6.6 Light breeze 13.2 Significant breeze
Sep 7.1 Gentle breeze 13.1 Significant breeze
Oct 8.2 Gentle breeze 14.6 Significant breeze
Nov 8.9 Gentle breeze 15 Significant breeze
Dec 8.8 Gentle breeze 14.8 Significant breeze

Show Relative Humidity by Month

Month Avg. Relative Humidity
Jan 59.9%
Feb 58.8%
Mar 53.8%
Apr 49.3%
May 49.9%
Jun 54.7%
Jul 52%
Aug 55.7%
Sep 55.3%
Oct 53.9%
Nov 54.6%
Dec 65.4%

 

Is it Safe to Travel to Chicago?

Our best data indicates this area is generally safe. As of Dec 07, 2018 there are no travel advisories or warnings for the United States; exercise normal security precautions. Check this page for any recent changes or regions to avoid: Travel Advice and Advisories


 

The Busiest and Least Crowded Months

The busiest month for tourism in Chicago, IL, US is July, followed by June and May. Prices for hotels and flights will be most expensive during these months, though you can save if you purchase well in advance. Tourists are unlikely to visit Chicago in November. Those willing to visit at these times will likely find it the least expensive month.

Estimated Tourism by Month

 

Most Popular Months to Visit

Key
Tourists Seeking Accommodations

Tourism graph is based on Google searches for services used by tourists relative to the rest of the year. Tourism data for this area is very reliable. Displayed data is calculated relative to the peak, so a score of 47.4 in November means 47.4% of the tourists vs. July.



Overall Chicago Travel Experience by Season

Spring (March through May)

Humidity and temperatures combine to make this season feel moderately cold. Highs range from 78.6°F (25.9°C) and 36.4°F (2.4°C) with far warmer temperatures in the later months. Rain is somewhat common with 5 to 8 days of significant precipitation per month. Spring is the second busiest for tourism, which makes it a good time for those looking for things to do.

Summer (June through August)

The middle-year months have very comfortable weather with high temperatures that are comfortable. These months see the most precipitation with 6 to 10 days of precipitation per month. June – August is the busiest season for tourism in Chicago, so lodging and other accommodations may cost more than usual.

Fall (September through November)

Fall daily highs range from 80.6°F (27°C) and 44°F (6.7°C), which will feel chilly given the humidity and wind. It rains or snows a significant amount: 5 to 7 days per month. Tourism is the slowest during these months due to the weather, so hotels may be affordably priced.

Winter (December through February)

Weather is far too cold this time of year in Chicago to be enjoyable for warm weather travelers. The average high during this season is between 38.7°F (3.7°C) and 30.4°F (-0.9°C). On average, it rains or snows a fair amount: 3 to 6 times per month. These times of year are fairly slow with tourists.

 

Best Times to Travelthe United States › Chicago, IL, US


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