Why they don't choose bus service? Understanding special online car-hailing behavior near bus stops

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

mode - bus, mode - other, place - asia, place - urban, policy - sustainable, ridership - behaviour, ridership - mode choice, ridership - modelling


Special hailing behavior, Bus stop to bus stop, Hailing willingness, Generalized travel cost, Structural equation modeling (SEM)


People are more likely to choose to take a bus for travel theoretically if both the origin and destination are located near bus stops. However, many of these trips are now replaced by online car-hailing service in China. This study makes the first attempt to look into this special hailing behavior by conducting a contrast analysis between hailing trip and its corresponding bus journey with the same origin and destination. We proposed an identification approach to classify the special hailing trips into four types of hailing behaviors with various hailing willingness. Structural equation modeling is then used to explore the impacts of land use characteristics, features of transport facilities and hailing ridership characteristics on the performance of special hailing behavior. Based on the results, 10.86 percent of special hailing trips have origins and destinations that are located within 100 m distance of the bus stop. Imbalance travel demand for special hailing at different periods of the day indicates the time-varying characteristic, which reaches its highest level in the afternoon. Especially through the major mobility trends of these trips, the spatial patterns of special hailing behavior can be divided into two regimes (i.e. urban and suburban areas) corresponding to the agglomeration area of varied social activities and residential areas. The generalized travel costs of bus and online car-hailing reflect the hailing willingness of travelers to some extent. People face the tradeoff between the two travel modes and tend to choose instead to use online car-hailing in different situations, and the SEM results support this. Notably, the accessibility of bus stops and users' bus travel experience show significant negative effects on special hailing behavior, and the need to transfer during a bus journey can particularly influence a traveler's initiative to take a bus. The findings provide insights into the special online car-hailing usage patterns at bus stop level and its role in urban transport, which can support accurate planning and upgrading of sustainable public transit to increase competitiveness at the big picture.


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


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