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In 2022, public transit use in Metro Vancouver nearly as much as pre-pandemic levels, TransLink data shows



Ridership numbers on public transport in Metro Vancouver increased to almost 80 per cent of pre-pandemic levels near the end of 2022, data shows.

Statistics from TransLink, the region’s transit authority, show that 193.6 million trips were made across the system last year, a 48 per cent increase over 2021.

The increase came as most public health measures restricting transit were dropped at the start of 2022. Ridership across the country went down sharply in the two years prior, amid the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Dan Mountain, a spokesperson for the authority, said TransLink was seeing riders return at rates higher than most other transit authorities in North America.

A line chart showing the system-wide monthly journeys on TransLink. The yellow line for 2019 is highest, peaking at around 30 million monthly journeys, with the 2022 line peaking at around 22.5. The statistics for 2021 and 2020 are far below both, with sharp dips in both observed.
Data from TransLink shows that ridership increased to almost 80 per cent of pre-pandemic levels in 2022. (TransLink)

“We had the fifth-most boardings of any metropolitan area throughout all of Canada and the U.S., despite having the 24th-largest population,” he told CBC News. “We’re leading so many different major transit agencies throughout North America, because I think transit is so integral to Metro Vancouver’s way of life.”

The data, from TransLink’s annual service performance review, shows much of the ridership recovery was driven by the southeast and eastern sections of Metro Vancouver — which includes Surrey, Langley, White Rock, Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows.

A sub-regional map of Metro Vancouver with percentages showing the ridership recovery rates. In the southeast region, the recovery rate was 93 per cent. In the eastern region, the recovery rate was 98 per cent.
A map showing the ridership recovery by the sub-regions of Metro Vancouver. The southeast and eastern sub-regions showed the highest rate of recovery. (TransLink)

Mountain says some parts of the region have seen ridership levels exceed pre-pandemic levels.

“Every quarter we modify our bus services to match where demand is going,” he said. “We’re [providing] 12 per cent higher bus service in Surrey and the surrounding areas since we were in pre-pandemic levels.”

Overcrowding a concern

With the ridership rebound, overcrowding has again become a concern for many transit users, as viruses like COVID-19 are airborne and spread in confined areas.

TransLink data shows that over six per cent of buses in fall 2022 were overcrowded — defined as when the number of passengers exceeds the target capacity, and all seats are full for at least part of the trip.

Mountain acknowledged the issue is likely to become pronounced as more people return to taking transit, and said TransLink adding more RapidBuses to major routes was one way to alleviate the issue of crowding.

The RapidBuses — fast bus lines along major corridors introduced at the start of 2020 — have proven to be popular among transit riders. Three of the rapid transit routes were among the top 10 busiest routes in 2022.

“RapidBus services are becoming the backbone of the transit system,” reads the review. “Most RapidBus routes are among the highest ridership routes in the sub-regions they serve.”

Mountain said that the authority was planning to bring in bus rapid transit over the next 10 years, which would carry more passengers over the regular articulated buses, in addition to more bus routes based on demand.

A simultaneous review of the HandyDART service — which provides door-to-door transportation for disabled people and those who need mobility aids — showed ridership has increased to around 70 per cent of pre-pandemic levels.

“We will continue to invest in our system so residents have a world class, reliable and affordable public transit network they can depend on every single day,” said TransLink CEO Kevin Quinn in a statement.



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Lululemon shares surge as consumers snap up pricier athletic wear



By Savyata Mishra

(Reuters) – Shares of Lululemon Athletica Inc soared 15% in early trade on Friday, after the premium apparel retailer defied investor worries with a full-year outlook lift amid little pullback from consumers and a sharp rebound in China sales.

The rosy outlook comes in contrast to the general trend of U.S. retailers ranging from Macy’s to Dollar General warning of weak discretionary spending by American consumers.

At least 11 brokerages raised price targets on the company, with Piper Sandler hiking by the highest margin to $445, above the median of $424.


“We think (Lululemon) is one of the select brands continuing to drive outsized demand in this more challenging macro environment with innovation and newness,” said Abbie Zvejnieks, analyst at Piper Sandler.

Lululemon’s first-quarter results also beat estimates as the company saw traffic across both its stores and online go up about 30%.

“Lululemon’s stores continue to be a key catalyst for customer retention and acquisition,” analysts at TD Cowen wrote in a note.

The company also reported a 79% rise in sales in China, bolstered by the rollback of COVID restrictions. Lululemon’s exposure to China could be “a solid source of sales and margin upside for the rest of the year,” analysts at Barclays wrote in a note.

A loyal customer base has also given the company a leg up, helping it sell more of its popular products, such as the Align high-rise yoga pants which retails between $98 and $118, at full price, even amid an uncertain economy.

“Lululemon is just very popular right now and seems to be immune from the slowing trend,” David Swartz, an analyst at Morningstar Research said.

The company’s strong results also lifted shares of other athletic wear makers including Nike Inc and Athleta owner Gap Inc by 4% and 3%, respectively. Shares of European sportswear companies Adidas and Puma were also up.

(Reporting by Savyata Mishra and Aishwarya Venugopal in Bengaluru; Editing by Krishna Chandra Eluri)



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OPEC Discussing 1 Million Bpd Output Cut




Oil prices were trading up on Friday afternoon as shorters got a little nervous heading into the OPEC+ weekend, with new rumors circulating about the group’s discussions about another 1 million bpd in production cuts.

The OPEC+ group is scheduled for three separate meetings beginning this weekend and concluding on June 4. While the general sentiment has been that the group will keep the status quo as far as production targets are concerned. But Saudi Arabia’s Energy Minister has made boistrous threats against oil’s speculators in the runup to the meeting, saying that shorters will be “ouching”.


On Thursday, Reuters suggested that the OPEC+ group would be unlikely to deepen its production targets at the meeting this weekend. But late on Friday, Reuters suggested that OPEC+ was indeed discussing an additional output cut of around 1 million barrels “among possible options” for the meeting on June 4.

Crude oil prices were already trading up ahead of the meeting, but increased even more in the afternoon hours, bringing Brent crude to $76.32 at 4:20 p.m., a $2.06 per barrel increase on the day. WTI was trading at $71.90 per barrel at that time.

The OPEC meeting will begin at 1 pm Vienna time tomorrow, with OPEC+ meeting on Sunday.

The latest price hike could prompt OPEC+ to keep production targets the same. But Saudi Arabia appears to still be in control of OPEC+, and he could decide to make good on his threats to punish short sellers for their speculative trades that fly in the face of market fundamentals.

“I keep advising them (referencing oil speculators) that they will be ouching, they did ouch in April, I don’t have to show my cards. I am not a poker player…but I would just tell them watch out,” Saudi’s energy minister said late last month in the runup to the meeting.

By Julianne Geiger for

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Air Canada should face more consequences after two disruptions in a week, consumer advocate says



An airline consumer advocate says Air Canada should face tougher consequences for stranding passengers after two disruptions in a week.

Gábor Lukács, president of Air Passenger Rights, said Canadian airlines such as Air Canada currently don’t face enough consequences from the government each time they delay or cancel a flight.

“It feels like the airlines just have a free pass,” Lukasc told in an interview Friday.

Air Canada’s operations were jolted not once but twice in a span of seven days, impacting over 670 flights combined. On May 25, 241 Air Canada flights were delayed, and 19 were cancelled. This past Thursday, 362 flights were delayed and 48 cancelled, according to tracking service


Air Canada said the recently implemented system used to communicate with aircraft and monitor the performance of its operations was having technical problems.

In a statement to yesterday, the airline confirmed that both incidents occurred in the same system but were unrelated.

Currently, a traveller is entitled to between $125 and $1,000 in compensation for delays up to three hours or more, unless the disruption is a result of events beyond the airline’s control.

However, Lukács said he believes Air Canada is gatekeeping what really happened so they don’t have to pay passengers compensation.

“I’m confident that this is within the airline’s control,” Lukasc said.

The federal government has plans to strengthen the Air Passenger Protection Regulations. The proposed policy amendments would increase the maximum penalty for airline violations to $250,000, and hold airlines to regulatory costs of complaints.

Air Canada said no one was available for an interview on Friday.

By Friday afternoon, the Montreal-based airline told through an email statement the communicator system was stabilized and “it is functioning normally.”

However, “due to the effects of Thursday’s IT issues on our schedule, some flights may be delayed this morning as we reposition aircraft and crew,” Air Canada said.

There were 164 Air Canada flights, or 30 per cent of the airline’s scheduled load, had been delayed Friday as of 6:00 p.m. EDT, along with 36 cancellations, as seen on FlightAware.

Additionally, Air Canada Rouge had 62 flights delayed and 25 cancellations.

“That’s absurd, especially for a massive huge airline like Air Canada,” said Lukács.

A spokesperson for Transport Minister Omar Alghabra said the ministry has been in touch with Air Canada since the situation began, but did not confirm whether the airline could face any consequences, including fines.

“We expect all air carriers, including Air Canada, to uphold their obligations to keep passengers safe and protect their rights, and ensure all delays and cancellations are mitigated as soon as possible,” Alghabra’s office said in an email statement sent to on Friday.



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