An Assessment of the Benefits of the Walking School Bus in Christchurch, New Zealand

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

economics - benefits, mode - bus, mode - school bus, mode - pedestrian


Walking school bus, School transportation, School children, School buses, Mobility, Interviewing, Interviewing, Christchurch (New Zealand), Children, Child, Benefits


A walking school bus involves parents or other adults escorting a group of children on a set route to school. The first one was established in 1996 in Canada. They can now be found in a variety of countries, including New Zealand. Many of the benefits associated with them are based on the general benefits of affecting a modal shift away from cars in favour of walking. However, there is still relatively little known about the less quantifiable benefits of them, and there has been some suggestion that they can adversely affect children's independent mobility. This research examined the perceived benefits of walking school buses by interviewing people involved in the day to day running of the scheme in Christchurch, New Zealand. The results suggest that walking school buses have many social benefits and that if anything, they encourage children's independent mobility.


Transportation Research Part A Home Page: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/journal/09658564