Environmentally friendly holiday transport mode choices among students: The role of price, time and convenience

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Journal of Sustainable Tourism, 2013, 21 (4), pp. 596 - 613
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Transport mode choice is a critical element in holiday decision-making, affecting other components of the holiday and the holiday's environmental impacts. This study investigates the role of price, time and convenience regarding transport mode choice using a stated choice experiment. It explores differences in mode choice among European student travelers, a very active travel segment, with some environmental awareness but low regard for the environmental impacts of their travels. Survey data from 372 respondents, resulting in 5952 choice situations, gives insight into transport mode choice and the role of travel cost, travel time, punctuality, access time/mode, travel class and type of connection. Results indicate that cost is the most important product attribute followed by time, with convenience playing a secondary role for student travelers. Flying emerged as the top choice (50%), followed by rail (25%) and car (21%). The findings also show that the degree of respondents' general pro-environmental behavior-rather than their environmental attitudes-shapes students' transport mode choices. However, a complex picture emerges, with a range of varying perceptions about the importance of time components (punctuality and access time) for each mode, and a negative threshold for journeys by rail of over five hours. © 2013 Copyright Taylor and Francis Group, LLC.
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