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Overview of validation report

After you’ve published your data in General Transit Feed Specification (GTFS) format, it’s time to review your GTFS feed to ensure that it is both functional and accurate. This is important, not just to provide a valid GTFS feed, but also to ensure that your feed is providing accurate data for your riders. To review the proper way to format your data, read our GTFS feed specifications.

Whenever you upload a new version of your feed, the Transit Partner Dashboard automatically generates a validation report for that feed. This report includes a summary of your feed and provides you with a list of errors and warnings.

Feed issues

As you review your GTFS feed, you may need to address various errors and warnings. There are three types of issues that can arise in your data feed:

Issue type Description Example
Fetch errors Issues that prevent Google from retrieving your feed, usually due to a data fetch setup issue. These must be fixed before we can create a preview feed or provide a validation report. The FTP URL you submitted is inaccurate, causing a 404 when Google tries to fetch your feed.
Validation errors Critical, blocking issues that must be fixed in order for your feed to work

Missing referenced value [link]

The service_id referenced in trips.txt is not defined in calendar.txt.
Validation warnings Potential feed problems that you should review to ensure your feed accurately describes your transit routes and schedules.

Example 1

Google flags a stop that your feed indicates is located in the middle of the ocean.

You update your feed to properly locate the stop.

Example 2

Google surfaces a warning because a route schedule appears are too tight based on distances between stops.

You check your information and confirm it’s accurate. No further action needs on your part.

You must fix all validation errors and review the warnings to ensure your data is accurate.

Validation report

Whenever you upload a new version of your feed, the Transit Partner Dashboard automatically generates a validation report for that feed. This report includes a summary of your feed and provides you with a list of warnings. 

To access the validation report for your feed:

  1. Access the Transit Partner Dashboard

  2. Click on your feed

  3. Click the Validation report button

Validation report button

Any Google account that is granted Transit Partner Dashboard access after a new validation report has been generated won’t be able to view that report.

Validation report features

The validation report includes a navigation bar with tabs for a number of important features:

Feed overview

The initial page of the validation report includes a high-level summary of the feed, including statistics about the feed and a listing of routes and agencies.

The overview also contains any validation errors or warnings discovered in the feed.

Validation report overview

You need to fix all the errors in order to have your data to be launched on Google Maps. You are highly encouraged to fix any warnings identified in the validation report. 
Stops

The Stops tab of the validation report shows all the stops from your feed on a map. Use this view to verify the location of your stops.

Validation reports stops

Calendars

The Calendars tab shows a summary of all service calendars computed for your feed. Use this view to verify that the service dates specified in your feed are correct. Pay particular attention to weekends, holidays, and other special service.

Validation report calendars

Queries

The Queries tab includes randomly generated Google Maps directions queries between pairs of stops in your feed. These queries can be used to test and verify transit routing results once a feed has been launched into preview. These queries may be used to augment your own testing of routing results for your feed.

validation report queries

There are also external tools available for testing your feed. We recommend using the Transit Partner Dashboard’s feed validation report because it’s more strict than the open feed validator script, and it also supports Google’s GTFS extensions.

If you discover any data issues in your validation report, update and re-upload your feed. After you have uploaded a feed that has no errors, reviewed all warnings, and tested in private preview, please request a Quality Assurance (QA) review from Google.

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