TransLink celebrates one billion Compass taps

TRANSLINK is thanking its customers as it marks a major milestone this week with its smart card system. Around 8:30 a.m. on Wednesday (August 23), a customer who boarded a bus on the 100 22nd Station / Marpole Loop route tapped in on the bus’s mobile validator to record the billionth tap since the Compass system was first switched on for testing in September 2013.

TransLink says Compass was launched to the public in phases beginning in 2015 and allows customers to transfer between bus, SkyTrain, SeaBus and West Coast Express with a single product. Today, the ease and convenience of using the card are just two of the reasons why almost all TransLink customers use Compass to access the transit system. About 95 per cent of all journeys on the transit system are made using a Compass product.

In addition to the customer benefits of using Compass, the information TransLink gathers from each tap significantly improves its ability to deliver service, leading to an improved experience for its customers.


Compass facts on tap:


  • First customer tap: September 9, 2013, on 2 Macdonald / Downtown bus (beta testing)
  • Average weekday taps, system wide: 1.66 million
  • Busiest days for taps:

–  July 28, 2017 (1.84 million)

–  June 23, 2017 (1.83 million)

–   September 9, 2016 (1.83million)

  • Busiest day of the week for taps (average number of taps): Wednesdays – 1.7 million
  • Top-5 busiest SkyTrain stations (Average weekday taps)

–   Waterfront – 66,000

–   Burrard – 51,000

–   Granville – 48,000

–   Metrotown – 44,000

–   Vancouver City Centre – 41,000

  • Busiest time of day for taps: 8:15 a.m. – 80 taps / second
  • Busiest hour: 5-6 p.m. – 170,000 taps


Kevin Desmond, TransLink CEO, said on Thursday: “This milestone of one billion taps demonstrates to me the ease with which our customers are using the Compass system, and the way it’s helping to transform the travel experience for our customers. They enjoy the day-to-day benefits – the ease of tapping, the ability to easily manage their card – and I’m pleased to say Compass data is helping us design a better system for our customers today and in the years ahead.”

Matt Cole, President, Cubic Transportation Systems, said: “We are excited to achieve this milestone with TransLink of exceeding one billion taps. This not only demonstrates the success and reliability of our customer’s Compass Card payment system, but also the seamless and intermodal payment experience it provides.”