Valuing Convenience in Public Transport

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The experience of transport systems users, in terms of comfort, reliability, safety and above all convenience, is critical in determining demand for transport services, at least when there is a choice of alternative ways to travel. Convenience is one of the strongest attractions of the private car for passenger transport. For users of public transport, convenience is also clearly important but not always clearly defined and not often measured in designing transport systems or monitoring their operating performance. In many situations, an increase in public transport convenience reduces the unit costs of travel (euros/dollars per hour or cents per minute) and so provides benefits equivalent to an increase in travel speed.

This report focuses on convenience and its importance to the user experience. It reviews operational definitions of convenience, evidence for the willingness of users to pay for convenience and the use of indicators to assess and improve the convenience of public transport, with a view to making it more effective and more competitive.


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Valuation of urban rail service

Experiences from Tokyo, Japan

International Transport Forum

Promoting public transportation, which includes rail, metro, bus rapid transit, and bus services is one of the most popular urban transportation policies among transportation authorities in many countries. This popularity may reflect the social requirement to pursue a sustainable transportation system by motivating people to use an environmentally friendly transportation mode. As most public transportation services are provided directly by public authorities or are financially supported by government/public-sector entities, an investment in public transportation is typically evaluated within a cost-benefit analysis framework. However, since public transportation service consists of many different components, including accessing public transit stops, waiting for the service, riding trains, transferring from one train to another, and exiting to a final destination, it is necessary to evaluate each component in detail. Thus, there is a strong need to develop a clear methodology by which to value the expected benefits stemming from a public transportation service change in monetary terms according to each service component.

This paper aims to describe the government’s manual and report the recent practices of valuing urban rail transportation services in Japan.

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