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Senior travelers' trip chaining behavior : survey results and data analysis.
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  • Abstract:
    The research team conducted a survey of travel and activity scheduling behavior to better understand senior

    citizens’ trip chaining behavior in the Chicago metropolitan area’s most populous counties. The team used an

    internet-based, prompted recall activity-travel survey using Global Positioning System (GPS) devices to collect

    activity-travel diaries and other necessary information. This survey was conducted with 112 people living in 101

    households in Northeastern Illinois’ Cook, DuPage, Lake, and Will Counties. Because aging is a growing

    concern among transportation planners, this survey focused especially on the elderly population, with

    approximately half of the survey sample consisting of elderly households and the remainder of non-elderly

    households. Each respondent within these households was asked to carry a portable GPS device ideally for 14

    consecutive days and upload the collected data to a website at the end of each day to fill in their activity-travel

    survey questionnaires. The results suggest that GPS surveys have an improved ability to capture trips that are

    frequently under-reported; the use of prompted recall provides valuable data about the activity planning and

    scheduling process itself, which is not found in traditional surveys. Analysis of the decision-making process

    from the collected data reveals that some aspects of elderly travel behavior are intrinsically distinct from those

    of the younger population. Results indicate that while age does not affect some aspects of activity-travel

    behavior, it does affect such aspects as planning horizons, trip flexibility, and trip chaining practices. This

    study’s results can therefore be used to plan more efficient transit services targeting senior travelers and may

    help change their attitudes toward public transportation.

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