Expanding the positive utility of travel through weeklong tracking: Within-person and multi-environment variability of ideal travel time

Huyen T.K. Le, Ralph Buehler, Yingling Fan, Steve Hankey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations

Abstract

Travel has been found to have a positive utility—often measured as a desire for non-zero travel time. Although past studies have found that desired travel time varies by trip attributes, they often focused on a single trip purpose (e.g., commute) or single time point (e.g., peak period of one day) and rarely captured variation within individuals and across multiple travel environments. To address these limitations, we employed a smartphone-based travel behavior survey of 186 users making 4397 trips in the Washington, DC, and Blacksburg, VA metropolitan areas. For each user, multiple trips were recorded and the user was asked to repeatedly report on the ideal travel time for each trip. We found that desired travel time varied across different trip environmental characteristics and purposes. Ideal travel time was longer for active travel trips, leisure trips, weekend trips, and when the user conducted activities during trips (e.g., talking, using the phone, looking at the landscape) and traveled with companions. Our study suggests the need for more realistic estimation of the value of travel time savings and the need for quantifying the effect of multitasking during travel on people's willingness to reduce travel time. Practitioners should also consider providing better urban infrastructure for pedestrians and bicyclists to fulfill their trips, as their ideal travel times closely match actual travel times.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number102679
JournalJournal of Transport Geography
Volume84
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study was supported by the Institute for Society, Culture and Environment, School of Public and International Affairs, and College of Architecture and Urban Studies at Virginia Tech, USA. Funding was also provided by the Center for Transportation Studies at the University of Minnesota, USA. We thank Trevin Glasgow (Virginia Tech), Wei Ni, Feng Li, and the Daynamica team (University of Minnesota) for their support of this project.

Funding Information:
This study was supported by the Institute for Society, Culture and Environment, School of Public and International Affairs, and College of Architecture and Urban Studies at Virginia Tech , USA. Funding was also provided by the Center for Transportation Studies at the University of Minnesota , USA. We thank Trevin Glasgow (Virginia Tech), Wei Ni, Feng Li, and the Daynamica team (University of Minnesota) for their support of this project.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 Elsevier Ltd

Keywords

  • ICT
  • Mobile app
  • Multitasking
  • Positive utility of travel
  • Satisfaction
  • Travel demand

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