TransLink (South East Queensland)

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Motto Integrated public transport for South East Queensland
Formation TransInfo: August 1993
TransLink: June 2003
Authority: July 2008
Translink Division: November 2012
Type Departmental Agency
Purpose Coordinate and integrate public transport services
Headquarters Brisbane
Brisbane Transport
Brisbane Ferries
Queensland Rail
(other operators)
Neil Scales

TransLink is an agency of the Department of Transport and Main Roads first introduced by the Queensland Government in June 2003 to coordinate and integrate bus, ferry and rail services. TransLink works with Airtrain, Brisbane Transport, Transdev Brisbane Ferries, Queensland Rail and 17 other operators to provide these services in South East Queensland. TransLink operates an integrated ticketing system and the go card smartcard system to allow the use of one ticket on multiple services.

In November 2012 the Authority was dissolved and re-absorbed back into the Department of Transport and Main Roads.[1] Combining the former Authority and qConnect, it is now responsible for the co-ordination of public transport across the whole of Queensland.


TransInfo was a phone inquiry and timetable service established in August 1993 by Queensland Transport. It was found to be a very successful service, and in a 1997 research study 99% of surveyed transport users were either very or fairly satisfied with the service.[2] After the success of TransInfo, TransLink was introduced by the Queensland Government in June 2003 as an agency within Queensland Transport replacing the former TransInfo service. With a $21.4 million budget TransLink was tasked with the job to introduce common fares, zones, concessions, ticket types and to start introducing a smartcard system from mid-2004. Prior to the TransLink's introduction, combined patronage for public transport services was only around 112 million trips per year.[3][4]

TransLink delivered the new integrated ticketing system in July 2004, to help with the change over 100 TransLink assistants were out throughout the South East Queensland. In addition, the daily ticket was introduced which with only one ticket allowed unlimited travel on public transport within the zones on the ticket and for the first time students and veterans throughout South East Queensland received a 50% discount on fares.[5] In just two months an extra 2.3 million passengers traveled on services and ticket sales increased by 11%.[5] Since TransLink's introduction, passenger numbers has grown faster than ever before, in 2005, TransLink's passenger numbers increased by 9.5%. In 2005, TransLink saw almost a 20% increase in passenger numbers.[6][7]

The go card was rolled out throughout Brisbane in February 2008.[8] TransLink was replaced by a Transit Authority in July 2008 by the Queensland Government. This new Authority took responsibility for public transport in South East Queensland. The Authority became the face of public transport in South East Queensland, and at the same time a 24 hours a day, seven days a week customer information and support phone number was introduced.[9][10]

In November 2009, TransLink started cashless services during peak times, only accepting go cards for ticket payment or prepaid paper tickets, in an effort to improve service efficiency. In late 2009, Translink announced scrapping of monthly and weekly paper tickets and plans to phase out paper tickets by the end of 2010.[11][12] On 4 January 2010, to encourage the use of the go card off-peak discounts and a direct debit top-up option was introduced. At the same time TransLink increased fares and also announced fares would increase by a further 45% over the following three years.[11]


Bus stop
go card reader

TransLink uses zones to charge the correct fare no matter what service a passenger uses. Zones radiate out in approximate rings from the centre of Brisbane which are used to determine ticket prices for passengers. There are a total of 23 zones stretching from Gympie (170 km north of Brisbane) to Coolangatta (100 km south of Brisbane). The zones stretch as far west as Helidon (80 km west of Brisbane) and as far east as the bayside suburbs of Brisbane. The borders between zones are called zone boundaries, and some areas on the zone boundaries are designated as precincts. A precinct carries two zones, those of both zones it sits on the boundary of. When traveling to or from a precinct the cost of the fare will be the lower cost possible. For example, if a passenger travelled from Zone 3 to Zone 5 they would buy a ticket from Zone 3 to 5. If their travel was from a precinct at the boundaries of Zone 3 & Zone 4 they would purchase a Zone3/4 - Zone 5 ticket, and they would be charged as though beginning in Zone 4, despite actually starting their journey from within the boundary of Zone 3. This ensures passengers are not charged extra for a zone they did not travel through in their journey, but barely started or finished their trip in. Precincts do not line the boundaries of every zone, rather they surround areas with high patronage running both directions such as shopping centres.

go card[edit]

Main article: go card

TransLink offers a contactless fare payment card called go card requiring passengers to touch on and off at a card reader at the start and end of each journey, and when transferring between services. The fare is automatically calculated based on the zones travelled and deducted from a pre-paid balance.

The following types of go card are available:

  • Adult go card is for use by passengers without concessions.
  • Child go card is for use by children under the age of 15 years.
  • Concession go card is for use by passengers entitled to a concession, such as full-time secondary and tertiary students, holders of a Pensioner Concession Card, and holders of a Repatriation Health Card.
  • Seniors go card is for use by passengers who have a Queensland Seniors Card issued by the Queensland Government.

SEEQ card[edit]

Introduced in late 2012, the SEEQ card has been introduced for visitors to South East Queensland. This card provides any travel for a period of 3 or 5 days across all zones in the network. The card can also be use to redeem discounts at locations throughout the South East Queensland region.[13]

Paper tickets[edit]

A single-fare paper ticket is also available for infrequent travellers and visitors.[14]

  • Single – one-way travel with unlimited transfers for two hours dependent on zones purchased (passengers travelling through 11 zones or more have their final transfer time extended by 90 minutes).
  • Single (Concession) – available for eligible students, pensioners and children, and these customers travel for half the price of regular adult passengers. Children under five years of age travel free. A valid concession card must be presented when purchasing and presenting a concession ticket.[15]


TransLink liveried Park Ridge Transit Bustech bodied Volvo B12BLE in August 2008

TransLink is divided into eleven different operating regions. The regions are largely based on the councils boundaries.[16] In October 2007 a common white, green, blue and orange livery began to be applied to the fleets of all South East Queensland operators.[17]

Greater Brisbane[edit]





Sunshine Coast[edit]

Gold Coast[edit]


Main article: Busways in Brisbane


  1. ^ Qld Parliament approves dissolving Translink ABC News 2 November 2012
  2. ^ Johnson, Vaughan (21 November 1997). "TransInfo demand surging". Ministerial Media Statements. Queensland Government. 
  3. ^ Bredhauer, Stephen (5 June 2003). "New agency to introduce integrated ticketing". Ministerial Media Statements. Queensland Government. 
  4. ^ Lucas, Paul (23 April 2004). "Information on how to get 'one ticket please' to SEQ". Ministerial Media Statements. Queensland Government. 
  5. ^ Mickel, John (14 July 2006). "1,000 volunteers to test new smart card". Ministerial Media Statements. Queensland Government. 
  6. ^ Bligh, Anna (9 October 2007). "Bligh government to create new transit authority". Ministerial Media Statements. Queensland Government. 
  7. ^ Mickel, John (1 July 2008). "24/7 access to new transit authority". Ministerial Media Statements. Queensland Government. 
  8. ^ a b "Fare Restructure". Retrieved 23 March 2010. 
  9. ^ Marissa Calligeros (30 September 2009). "Cash free zones: buses to go card-only". Brisbane Times. Fairfax Digital. 
  10. ^ "TransLink regions and service area". Retrieved 23 March 2010. 
  11. ^ New Look, New Buses for Sunny Coast Minister for Transport, Trade, Employment & Industrial Relations 6 October 2007

External links[edit]

Media related to TransLink at Wikimedia Commons