Cycling Behaviours: Minimising Travel Distance, Minimising Travel Time and Continuous Cycling
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Research into cycling behaviour often concludes that length is one of the most important factors in Route Choice Analysis (RCA). In contrast, RCA studies for cars find that travel time minimisation is a more important motivator. Furthermore, stated preference studies find that cyclists also prefer to cycle continuously. This research aims to find to what extent cyclists minimise travel distance, travel time and cycle continuously. The hypothesis is that cyclists primarily cycle to minimise travel distance, but that they deviate for a shorter travel time or to cycle continuously. To test this hypothesis, cyclists from in different regions in the Netherlands were asked to record their cycling behaviour for a week and to participate in a survey. Between the origins and destinations of the observed routes, labelled route alternatives were generated. Spatial and personal characteristics were added whose influence on cycling behaviour is tested through statistical analysis. The characteristics were selected based on what influences these cycling behaviours according to previous studies. The results show that cyclists do prioritise travel distance minimisation, despite not always taking the shortest route. This indicates that cyclists also prioritise other motives. However, from the results it could not be concluded that these motives were travel time minimisation and continuous cycling. This is despite the fact that the participating cyclists did state to have these motives in the survey. However, there are two exceptions. Firstly, men were shown to minimise travel time to some extent. Secondly, when cycling highways are present, people do seem to cycle continuously. This means that under certain circumstances travel time minimisation and continuous cycling were the main alternatives to minimising travel distance, but that generally this is not the case.