We study the decay of approximation numbers of compact composition operators on the Dirichlet space. We give upper and lower bounds for these numbers. In particular, we improve on a result of El-Fallah, Kellay, Shabankhah and Youssfi, on the set of contact points with the unit circle of a compact symbolic composition operator acting on the Dirichlet space $\mathcal{D}$ . We extend their results in two directions: first, the contact only takes place at the point 1. Moreover, the approximation numbers of the operator can be arbitrarily subexponentially small.