In this edition of Reset Rating, we’ll explore how to register your Clipper card.

(For those of you who are new to San Francisco, Clipper is “the all-in-one transit card for the Bay Area,” which allows you to pay for BART, Muni, and even parking in some cases.)

Read on to find out all of the steps you’ll need to take in order to register your card, as well as our review of the process (in terms of design, accessibility, and more).

Reset Rating: B+ (11.5 out of 15)


So, you’ve just gotten a Clipper card. The first thing you should do, before you take it for its first spin at the 16th Street Mission BART station, is to register it … online.

You’ll be grateful for this advice the day after a night of vigorous salsa dancing that causes your brand new, shiny, blue Clipper card to accidentally bounce out of your pocket.

As remorse surrounding the last shot of Cuervo sets in that next morning and you start assessing the damage done, you can easily dismiss this minor panic by simply canceling your registered, and now lost card, to prevent someone else from using the remaining balance. And then request a replacement.

At the end of the day, though, registering your Clipper card online is not even half the battle of owning one …

Accessibility: 2.5 out of 3

Where to start is pretty clear from the Clipper website; the service is listed boldly in the lefthand navigation bar of’s home page. You can access the Clipper website through the website or by going to the Clipper website directly (which I typically get to by Googling it … I can never remember the URL).

The Clipper site offers Chinese and Spanish translations only. For other languages, there is no snazzy Gov 2.0 online service. Instead, you will have to phone one of the two customer service numbers listed to register your card.

Ease of Use: 3 out of 3

So it’s pretty straightforward — plug in your serial number, give them some personal information, and bam, you have a registered Clipper card.

Design: 3 of 3

The Clipper card pages are visually consistent, and the forms are clean.

The Guide: 1 out of 3

There is no “Help” link on the pages, which is, as always, problematic. If you do come across any questions or concerns, there are listed customer service phone numbers at the base of each of the service pages.

User Feedback: 2 out of 3

It seems you could call the customer service lines or shoot them an email at the listed customer service email address in order to let them know what you thought of their service. But hiding in small, grey typeface at the base of each page of the website is a link labeled “Contact Us, which takes the user to a clear, usable form, which we consider the ideal online manifestation for feedback.

So why is it hiding?

The lack of visibility for this form, and the number of red herrings, i.e. phone numbers, emails, etc, prominently displayed that can lead a user astray, is the reason this component lost a point for feedback.

Finding It …

From, click on “Register Your Card” in the lefthand navigation bar. You’ll then be taken to the first of the registration pages.

Once you’ve filled in the card serial number, you’ll be taken to a page to start plugging in personal information to register your card.


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