Design System

British Columbia Government Design System for Digital Services


Last Updated: January 29, 2021


Links lead people to a different page.



Don't Use This when:

  • Users need to take an action on a page such as log-in or submit, use a primary button instead.

Design Guidance

  • If your link is at the end of a paragraph or sentence make sure the linked text does not include the full stop.
  • Links should be describe where it leads to
  • Do not put links in words such as "Link", "Here", or "Click Here". Learn more about descriptive links
  • Telephone links should be used to allow people to click a phone number to make a call
  • Links should not open a new tab or window unless it is preferable from an accessibility perspective. Ex. opening a new tab or window allows people to remain logged in on a secured site or avoid progress lost while filling in a form. If a link opens a new tab or window, it needs to have a warning included in the text such as "(opens in new window)". Example:
<a href="/portal" target="_blank">Application Portal (opens in new window)</a>


  1. On hover link removes underline and turns to blue.


This checkbox has been built according to WCAG 2.0 AA standards and all government services should strive to meet this level. This component successfully includes the following accessibility features:


As read using ChromeVox

"access your application, internal link."

"apply, internal link."

"external link, link."

"two five zero, five five five, zero one two three, link

Colour Contrast

Conveying Information

  • Underline allows people to identify the link without relying on colour alone
  • Underline dissapears on hover indicating link is clickable

Telephone links clicked on mobile phone browsers will make the call through the phone itself. Telephone links clicked on desktop browsers will make the call through a phone application (e.g. Skype) if available. When designing for a device that explicitly cannot make calls, telephone links should be omitted.

To create a telephone link, in the <a> tag's href attribute, use the tel: protocol followed by the full phone number in international dialing format (+1-250-555-0123). For the link text, use the ten digit phone number with hyphens. See Code section for an example.

Using the country code +1 in your href field ensures that the phone link works when clicked worldwide. Hyphens are not required for functionality, but they improve readability when the link is displayed in the status bar on hover.



<p>This is an internal example of a link to <a href="#">access your application</a>.</p>
<p>Here is another example of an internal link to <a href="#">apply</a>.</p>
<p>This is an example of an <a href="#">External Link</a> <i class="fas fa-external-link-alt"></i></p>
<p>Here is an example of a telephone link: <a href="tel:+1-250-555-0123">250-555-0123</a></p>


body {
  font-family: 'BCSans', 'Noto Sans', Verdana, Arial, sans-serif;
  font-size: 18px;

a {
  color: #1a5a96;

a:hover {
  text-decoration: none;
  color: blue;

i.fa-external-link-alt {
  color: #1a5a96;
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