Dynamic At-Stop Real-Time Information Displays for Public Transport: Effects on Customers

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

infrastructure - stop, planning - signage/information, land use - impacts, ridership - mode choice, ridership - commuting, ridership - behaviour, ridership - attitudes, economics - appraisal/evaluation, mode - rail, mode - tram/light rail, mode - mass transit, mode - subway/metro


Waiting time, Variable message signs, user reaction, Underground railways, Trolley cars, Transit, Trams, Subways, Studies, Real time information, Questionnaires, Public transit, Psychosocial aspects, Psychological effects, Psychological aspects, Passengers, Mode choice, Modal choice, Mental attitudes, Mass transit, Local transit, Information display systems, Impacts, Human behavior, Framework, Evaluation, Dynamic message signs, Display systems, Customers, Customer satisfaction, Choice of transportation, Changeable message signs, Behaviour, Behavior, Attitudes


Dynamic at-stop real-time information displays are becoming more and more ubiquitous in modern public transport. Reactions and attitudes towards these systems are very positive. But there is a need to provide a comprehensive framework of the possible effects that these kinds of displays can have on customers. The seven main effects described in this paper are: (A) reduced wait time, (B) positive psychological factors, such as reduced uncertainty, increased ease-of-use and a greater feeling of security, (C) increased willingness-to-pay, (D) adjusted travel behaviour such as better use of wait time or more efficient travelling, (E) mode choice effects, (F) higher customer satisfaction and finally (G) better image. Two studies are presented in this paper. Study I supports and proves that perceived wait times can be reduced by 20% by employing a before-after implementation evaluation study with questionnaires on a tramline. Study II shows the effects of real-time displays on behaviour in the form of adjusted walking speeds, by using a behaviour observation method in a subway station. The effect framework does not claim completeness and many effects are related to each other. However, the framework is a useful basis for designing evaluation studies and provides arguments in favour of at-stop real-time information displays.


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