Would You Wait? Bus Choice Behavior Analysis Considering Various Incentives

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

mode - bus, ridership - behaviour, operations - crowding, planning - surveys, planning - methods


public transport, bus choice behavior, survey, wait time, crowding


During the peak hour, ridership is much higher, and this can lead to problems such as overcrowding for customers and vehicle bunching for the operator as dwell times increase for the lead bus. In this paper, we examined whether to avoid overcrowding people might be willing to wait for the next bus knowing there were seats and if they were offered an incentive. Three distinct types of incentive were offered, defined according to goal-framing theory. To obtain the choice data, a discrete choice experiment was developed and incorporated into an online survey that was distributed to public transport users. A binary logit model and a mixed multinomial logit model were used to investigate how different factors influence public transport users’ bus choice behavior. Results show several considerations that increase the likelihood of users agreeing to the request to wait. These include the weather being sunny/fine, not very cold, or both, the purpose being seeing a friend or shopping, longer in-vehicle time, shorter proposed bus waiting time, and the incentive. The results of the mixed multinomial logit model show variation among the respondents with regard to the incentives. We found that age, gender, work status, possession of a driver ID, and vehicle availability are significant predictors for incentive preference. In that our models target specific groups of users with tailored incentives, the results indicate how to persuade public transport users to avoid overcrowded buses.


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