Assessing the Influence of Distance-based Charges on Freight Transporters

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

operations - traffic, policy - congestion, economics - pricing, organisation - management


Variable tolls, Travel time, Travel behavior, Traffic management (Physical distribution), Physical distribution, Motor carriers, Journey time, Freight transportation, Distribution, Distance based tolls, Cost benefit analysis, Congestion pricing, Choice models, Benefit cost analysis


Congestion charging has become a high-agenda theme in many urban environments, with a growing recognition of a need to commit more effort to establishing the impact that various charging regimes might have in reducing traffic congestion and, as a corollary, in raising revenue that can be used to re-invest to improve transport infrastructure in general and public transport services in particular. In addition to the political commitment, a major challenge being faced is behavioural—a need to understand more fully the role that specific charging regimes might play. The paper investigates the potential influence of variable user charges in the freight distribution chain. A choice-modelling framework is presented that identifies potential responses from the freight transport firm to distance-based charging within the context of the wider spectrum of costs and benefits delivered in terms of travel time savings and increased trip time reliability.