Research Reports

Route Preferences and the Value of Travel-Time Information for Motorists Driving Real-World Routes

Principal Investigator:

Kathleen A Harder, John Bloomfield, David M Levinson, Lei Zhang

May 2005

Report no. Mn/DOT 2005-20

Projects: Value of Information for Motorists

Topics: Economics, Planning

While there is a sizable body of literature on the benefits of travel information, most of it is based on theory or on simulations. This experiment analyzes results based on a field test of 117 drivers completing the same point-to-point trip in their own vehicles via five different routes. Participants traveled both arterial and freeway routes, assessed the travel information that was provided, evaluated the importance of the accuracy of the information and charted their route preferences for various trip purposes. Researchers were not looking merely for perceived time savings but driver perception of the value of the time saved in order to make projections about whether drivers would be willing to pay for accurate travel updates as a means of reducing overall cost, anxiety and uncertainty while driving. Knowledge of how much users want to pay for Advance Travel Information System (ATIS) services is necessary for the design of sustainable for-profit private services or private/public partnerships.

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