The stops made by commuters: evidence from the 2009 US National Household Travel Survey


Rui Wang

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

place - north america, place - urban, ridership - commuting, ridership - behaviour, economics - benefits


Commute, Tour, Stop, Trip chaining, US


Trip chaining, especially during peak-hour commute trips, is an important aspect of travel behavior that impacts the private and social costs and benefits of urban passenger travel. Combining large-sample data from the 2009 National Household Travel Survey (NHTS) and the 2010 US Census, this study analyzes the relationship between the complexity of commute tours and the characteristics of not just commuters and their households, but also their neighborhoods and regions. Different from most existing studies, this analysis controls more detailed individual, household, employment, and location characteristics and important interactions. In particular, by linking the restricted-use location data of households and work places from the NHTS survey to the US Census data, this study quantifies the effects of job-end population and employment densities. Results confirm the important impact of socio-demographics (gender, household responsibilities, and flexible work schedule), which underwent significant changes in the recent past, but fail to identify strong effects of socio-economic status, the regional and local built environment, or gasoline price.


Permission to publish the abstract has been given by Elsevier, copyright remains with them.


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