Title

CRITICAL MEASURES OF TRANSIT SERVICE QUALITY IN THE EYES OF OLDER TRAVELERS

Authors

J E. Burkhardt

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

2003

Subject Area

planning - service quality, land use - planning, ridership - mode choice, ridership - old people, mode - mass transit

Keywords

Transit, Strategies, Strategic planning, Service quality, Senior citizens, Quality of service, Public transit, Priorities, Prices, Passenger service quality, Older people, Old people, Objectives, Mode choice, Modal choice, Mass transit, Local transit, Goals, Focus groups, Elderly persons, Customer satisfaction, Consumers' preferences, Consumer preferences, Choice of transportation, Aged

Abstract

Older travelers use public transportation services for relatively few of their trips. Attracting additional older riders will require that transit operators pay more attention to the specific mobility preferences of older travelers. Focus group research generated measures of transit service quality. These measures rate factors that affect the relative levels of consumer satisfaction for older persons, who rate certain factors differently from other travelers. The travel attributes that were most highly valued by seniors in the focus groups are used to assess current travel modes and to suggest near-term and long-term improvement strategies for public transit operators. Public transit systems most likely to succeed in attracting older persons (and other riders as well) are expected to be those systems that offer the following: more choices in travel modes and their corresponding attributes, especially price; greater focus on higher-quality services; and greater degree of service articulation, in which travel services are more closely tailored to the specific travel needs of the individual traveler and a specific trip.