Gendered Aspects of Travel Behaviour Development - Are the Differences Disappearing?

Gendered Aspects of Travel Behaviour Development - Are the Differences Disappearing?


R Hjorthol, Institute of Transport Economics, NO



Earlier studies of men?s and women?s travel behaviour have shown significant differences both in use of transport mode and travel length. Men use the car more often than women, while women travel more by public transport and walk more often than men. Men also have longer trips in average than women. For instance research on the journeys to work show that women have their work place localised closer to the home than men, and they use the car less often than men, also when controlled for distance.

The differences between men and women can be found right back to the time personal travel surveys were first performed and in most countries, and they are still found.

Everyday travel reflects social activities and relations to different social institutions. When examining differences in men?s and women?s travel performance, it is important to base the study on knowledge about activities on various social arenas which generate trips.

There are three social areas, which traditionally are related different to men and women.

* Labour marked
* Household work
* Responsibility for children and elderly relatives

In average women have had lower wages than men, a greater part of them are occupied in health and care work, they have fewer fringe benefits and shorter working ours. Women spend more of their time doing household work like cooking, washing and shopping than men. They also use more of their time caring for own children than men do.

These differences have spatial, temporal and economical impacts on men and women?s everyday travel activities and use of transport modes. Social change at these areas will therefore also have effects on everyday travel.

In this paper I will present analyses of the development of the everyday travel pattern of men and women from 1992 to 2001 in Norway. The discussion of the results will be related to the three institutional fields mentioned above.

The empirical bases of the analyses are the Norwegian national personal travel surveys from 1992 and 2001. In 1992 a random sample of about 8000 respondents, 13 years and older were interviewed on telephone. The response rate was 65 per cent. In 2001 the total sample was 20.000 respondents; 12.000 respondents represented a random national sample, the rest was partly extra sample in three counties and partly additional sample for regional transport modelling. The response rate in 2001 was 67 per cent. The two surveys use almost the same questionnaire; which consist of five different parts.

* Travel diary for one day, all trips are registered, travel mode (also on foot and cycle), length, time use and number of persons in the vehicle
* Information about the last work trip, fringe benefits related to the use of car, parking conditions at work place
* Information about long (100 kilometre and longer) trips last month
* Information about the respondent, sex, age, education, occupation etc
* Information about the household, its members, place of residence, private transport recourses, public transport supply, distance to nearest shop, distance to nearest primary school etc.

In the analyses age (generation), education and occupation will be important variables for comparing travel patterns between men and women to detect social changes in this ten years period.


Association for European Transport