The Attitude of Bus Users to Travel Time Variability

The Attitude of Bus Users to Travel Time Variability

WINNER OF The Neil Mansfield Award


Y Hollander, ITS, University of Leeds, UK


The paper analyses bus users' trip scheduling considerations and attitudes to travel time variability.


Past research has not yet overcome the issue of whether the effects of unpredictable travel time variability (TTV) on the behaviour of travellers are fully explained by their trip scheduling considerations. While there is evidence that this is the case for car users, it has been shown that the choices of railway users are also influenced by the inconvenience caused by TTV per se; for bus users there is hardly any evidence at all. In the current paper, factors affecting trip scheduling and attitudes to TTV among bus users are investigated, based on a survey held in the city of York, England. The survey methodology and its design as an internet-based questionnaire are described. The results confirm that the influence of TTV is best explained indirectly through scheduling considerations. But since the common treatment of TTV in practice is through mean-variance formulations, we examine how does using the simple approach rather than the correct one affects the economic interpretation of TTV; the analysis reveals a massive bias. In addition, the paper presents main conclusions from an attempt to extend the scheduling model into a Mixed Logit formulation, accounting for taste variations within the studied population. Comparing the distribution of the willingness to pay from the Mixed Logit model to an estimate based on sub-sampling illustrates difficulties in using the Mixed Logit model for willingness to pay analysis.


Association for European Transport