Effects of Transit Quality of Service Characteristics on Daily Bus Ridership

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

place - australasia, place - urban, mode - bus, ridership - behaviour, operations - frequency, operations - service span, planning - service quality


transit quality of service, environmental predictors, bus ridership


A case study of Brisbane, the capital city of Queensland, Australia, explored how explicit measures of transit quality of service (e.g., service frequency, service span, and travel time ratio) and implicit environmental predictors (e.g., topographic grade factor) influenced bus ridership. The primary hypothesis tested was that bus ridership was higher in suburbs with high transit quality of service than in suburbs with limited service quality. Multiple linear regression, used to identify a strong positive relationship between route intensity (bus-km/h-km2) and bus ridership, indicated that both increased service frequency and spatial route density corresponded to higher bus ridership. Additionally, the travel time ratio (i.e., the ratio of in-vehicle transit travel time to in-vehicle automobile travel time) had a significant negative association with suburban ridership: transit use declined as travel time ratio increased. In contrast, topographic grade and service span did not significantly affect suburban bus ridership. The study findings enhance the fundamental understanding of traveler behavior, which is informative to urban transportation policy, planning, and provision.


Permission to publish the abstract has been given by Transportation Research Board, Washington, copyright remains with them.