An Evaluation of the Effect of Level of Service and Cost on Demand for Intercity Bus Travel: Final Report

Report No: 81-R14

Published in 1980

About the report:

This report describes an evaluation of the effect on intercity bus ridership of changes in frequency of service and cost. The study was based on a comparison of travel between 19 selected cities in Virginia served by air, bus, or rail. These modes were compared with highway travel by auto using various assumptions of energy availability. The effect of increasing the frequency of bus service was also investigated to determine if it is a viable means for attracting additional travel demands. Network data for each mode consisted of travel time, cost, and frequency of service. These data were applied to three state of-the-art intercity travel demand models selected from eleven reported in the literature. A status quo demand estimate was produced for travel within the Virginia system and the results were compared with demand resulting from increasing the number of bus departures per day and increasing per mile auto costs. The effect of increases in bus fare due to rising fuel costs was also determined. The results of this investigation indicate that intercity bus travel demand will not be significantly altered with increases in the number of bus departures per day, but will increase as costs of auto fuel rise. The intercity demand model developed by the state of Michigan yielded the most consistent results of all models tested.

Disclaimer Statement:The contents of this report reflect the views of the author(s), who is responsible for the facts and the accuracy of the data presented herein. The contents do not necessarily reflect the official views or policies of the Virginia Department of Transportation, the Commonwealth Transportation Board, or the Federal Highway Administration. This report does not constitute a standard, specification, or regulation. Any inclusion of manufacturer names, trade names, or trademarks is for identification purposes only and is not to be considered an endorsement.


Other Authors

Jeffrey E. Purdy, Lester A. Hoel, Ph.D.

Last updated: January 22, 2024

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