Transport modelling – both in traffic and transit fields – has been traditionally based on the assumption of the utility maximization principle. In public transport networks with high frequency services this has led to “hyperpath” route choice models in which passengers reduce their travel time by identifying for each node a set of attractive lines, each of which might be the fastest from the node, depending on its and other lines arrival time. Several assignment models have been developed using hyperpaths but the question of “whether” and “to what extent” transit users are able to reason and act in terms of hyperpaths has not yet been addressed. Doubts generated by the research on route choice call for experimental studies of the issue. The paper reports the initial results of a web-based survey of public transport frequent users in six countries (China, Germany, Japan, Italy, UK, and USA). Analyses of the replies concerning travellers’ actual behaviour are presented, which provide insights on the flexibility of route choice in relation to trip characteristics and information on services. Further behavioural research is identified which can lead to improved transit route choice and assignment models.
Fonzone, A., Schmoecker, J., Bell, M. G. H., Gentile, G., Kurauchi, F., Noeckel, K., & Wilson, N. H. M. (2010, July). Do “hyper-travellers” exist? – Initial results of an international survey on public transport user behaviour. Paper presented at 12th World Congress on Transport Research