The distribution of crowding costs in public transport: New evidence from Paris

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

place - europe, planning - surveys, economics - willingness to pay, economics - benefits, ridership - behaviour, operations - crowding, mode - subway/metro, mode - rail


Evaluation of non-market goods, Travel comfort, Crowding costs, Contingent valuation method, Paris subway


Whilst congestion in automobile traffic increases trip durations, this is often not the case in rail-based public transport where congestion rather leads to in-vehicle crowding, often neglected in empirical studies. Using original survey data from Paris, this article assesses the distribution of comfort costs of congestion in public transport. Estimating willingness to pay for less crowded trips at different levels of in-vehicle passenger density we cannot reject a simple linear relationship between crowding costs and density. We apply our results to the cost-benefit analysis of a recent Parisian public transport project.


Permission to publish the abstract has been given by Elsevier, copyright remains with them.


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