The role of coordination costs in mode choice decisions: A case study of German cities

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

place - europe, place - urban, technology - intelligent transport systems, ridership - behaviour, ridership - mode choice, planning - environmental impact, planning - surveys


Mode choice decision, Mode choice, Behavior, Discrete choice, Coordination costs, Information systems


In times of accelerating urbanization and environmental pollution, mode choice decisions (MCD) are a critical parameter in a city’s appearance and its environmental impacts. Simultaneously, the emerging smartphone multimodal traveller information systems (SMTIS) simplifies the usage of multimodal trips and, therefore, enhance the options in MCD. Current MCD models, in addition to considering classic parameters like travel time and cost, also consider socioeconomic variables and latent variables, such as modal preferences or mode-specific characteristics. However, from the users’ perspective, one main influence is currently still not sufficiently considered in these models: Coordination costs for planning the trip, such as looking-up time tables for public transport. Consequently, we introduced this variable in a multinomial logit model and made a representative survey in Germany for measuring the coordination effort and evaluating our model. Our results support our hypothesis that coordination costs have a significant impact on MCD. We therefore conclude that further developments in information systems together with supporting policies may influence the MCD and, hence, lead to more sustainable cities in the future.


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


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