Publication Detail

Wanting to Travel, More or Less:  Exploring the Determinants of the Deficit and Surfeit of Personal Travel


Journal Article

Available online at doi: 10.1007/s11116-004-2219-8

Suggested Citation:
Choo, Sangho, Gustavo O. Collantes, Patricia L. Mokhtarian (2005) Wanting to Travel, More or Less:  Exploring the Determinants of the Deficit and Surfeit of Personal Travel. Transportation 32 (2), 135 - 164

This study investigates the determinants of peoples desire to increase or decrease the amount of travel they do. We use data from 1,357 working commuters, residents of three different neighborhoods in the San Francisco Bay Area, California. The dependent variables are indicators of Relative Desired Mobility for ten categories of travel (short- and long-distance overall and by several mode- and purpose-specific categories). These variables are measured on a five-point ordinal scale ranging from much less to much more, through which the respondents indicated the amount of travel they want to do (in the category in question) compared to what they are doing now. Censored ordered probit models were developed for these variables, with explanatory variables including general travel attitudes, specific liking for travel in each of the same separate categories, objective and subjective measures of the amount currently traveled in each category, and personality, lifestyle, and socio-demographic characteristics. The results support the hypotheses that the liking for travel has a strong positive impact, and subjective qualitative assessments of mobility have a strong negative impact, on the desire to increase ones travel. Finally, a number of general types of effects on Relative Desired Mobility were identified, among them complementarity and substitution effects. The results of this study can provide policy makers and researchers with new and valuable insight into key principles that affect individual travel demand.

Keywords: affinity for travel, ordered probit, positive utility of travel, travel attitudes