The Effects of Attitudes and Personality Traits on Mode Choice

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

planning - safety/accidents, ridership - mode choice, ridership - attitudes, mode - mass transit


Transportation safety, Transit, Sweden, Public transit, Personality, Mode choice, Modal choice, Mental attitudes, Mass transit, Local transit, Incentives, Human comfort, Flexibility, Convenience, Commuters, Comfort, Choice of transportation, Attitudes


We hypothesize that differences in people's attitudes and personality traits lead them to attribute varying importance to environmental considerations, safety, comfort, convenience and flexibility. Differences in personality traits can be revealed not only in the individuals' choice of transport, but also in other actions of their everyday lives-such as how much they recycle, whether they take precautions or avoid dangerous pursuits. Conditioning on a set of exogenous individual characteristics, we use indicators of attitudes and personality traits to form latent variables for inclusion in an, otherwise standard, discrete mode choice model. With a sample of Swedish commuters, we find that both attitudes towards flexibility and comfort, as well as being pro-environmentally inclined, influence the individual's choice of mode. Although modal time and cost still are important, it follows that there are other ways, apart from economic incentives, to attract individuals to the, from society's perspective, desirable public modes of transport. Our results should provide useful information to policy-makers and transportation planners developing sustainable transportation systems.


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