26 September 2017 - Transport and Travel in Scotland 2016
6. Public Transport and Aviation
This section contains analysis and headline findings from the Scottish Household Survey questions on public transport (including the Travel Diary part of the survey), as well as comparisons with data from a range of other sources.
Satisfaction With Public Transport
Seventy two per cent of people were very or fairly satisfied with public transport in 2016, a decrease on 2015 (74%). The proportion of people that are very satisfied has decreased slightly from 23 per cent to 21 per cent. [Table 4]
Local Bus Services
Provisional figures indicate that there were 409 million bus journeys made in Scotland in 2015/16, a reduction from 416 million in 2014/15. [Table SUM2]
Twenty eight per cent of adults used the bus at least once a week. Fifty nine per cent had not used it in the past month. [Table 28]
Women tended to use buses more frequently than men (30% of women used the bus at least once a week compared to 25% of men). [Table 28]
Frequency of bus use differed across age groups and was highest amongst younger people (41% of 16-19 year olds had not used the bus in the last month). It was lowest in people aged between forty and fifty nine, and increased again for people over sixty, presumably due to the concessionary travel scheme. [Table 28]
Frequency of bus use was also higher in urban areas (41% of people in large urban areas use the bus at least once a week compared to 11% in remote rural areas). [Table 28]
People were satisfied with most of the aspects of bus services asked about in the survey. Agreement was highest for respondents feeling safe and secure during the day (93%), for finding it simple to decide which ticket to use (88%) and for finding routes and times easily (83%). Lowest levels of agreement were with fares being good value (61%) and buses being environmentally friendly (62%). [Table 29]
When asked what discourages them from using the bus more, 20 per cent said they had no need to use the bus more, 19 per cent of respondents said they used their own car and 19 per cent said it takes too long. Eighteen per cent indicated nothing discourages them from using the bus more often than they do. [Table 41]
Further bus statistics can be found in the Bus and Coach Chapter of Scottish Transport Statistics.
The National Concessionary Travel Scheme was rolled out across Scotland in April 2006. The scheme enables individuals aged 60+ or those with a disability (who meet certain criteria) to travel free on buses across Scotland.
There were 143 million concessionary travel journeys in 2015-16 (the latest year for which data are available), accounting for 35 per cent of all bus journeys in that year. [Table 2.2a Scottish Transport Statistics]
Eighty-seven per cent of adults aged 60+ hold a National Concessionary Travel pass in 2016, a similar figure to previous years. Twenty nine per cent of adults aged 16+ hold a pass. [Table 5]
Of those aged 60+, thirty seven per cent have a card and use it at least once a week (10% use it every day or almost every day). Thirty three per cent have a pass but had not used it in the last month. [Table 32]
Those living in urban areas use their pass more frequently than those living in rural areas. Women use their pass more frequently than men (43% of women aged 60+ have a pass and use it at least once a week, compared to 31% of men aged 60+). [Table 32]
Statistics on concessionary journeys, and card holder numbers from the National Concessionary Travel administrative systems, are included in Bus and Coach Chapter of Scottish Transport Statistics.
Annex B provides the results of analysis on the accessibility of bus services in Scotland, carried out by the GI-SAT team in Scottish Government. The Scottish Access to Bus Indicator (SABI) gives a score for the accessibility of bus services in each data zone and provides an objective measure of accessibility to public transport by bus in Scotland.
The analysis was based on Traveline data, which was used to find all bus stops within a 400 meter walking distance, by path or road, of each 2011 Census Output Area Centroid in Scotland. For each centroid, the total frequency of buses per hour for each bus stop within 400 meter was summed. This resulted in a total average number of buses per hour accessible within 400 meter of each output area centroid, on both weekdays and at the weekend. Transport Scotland chose the 400 meter distance to walk to a bus stop, in line with DfT work and wider public transport planning guidance.
The indicator provides separate scores for weekday and weekend services. The output areas are aggregated to data zones using a population weighted average. The datazones are then ordered by quintile and decile, from least to most accessible.
As the maps show, weekday access to bus services is highest in urban areas, in the central belt and Aberdeen. Outside these areas, access to bus services is poorer. The results are similar for weekend access.
The tables confirm this picture. The weekday scores by quintile show that 48.1% of all datazones in large urban areas are in the most accessible quintile. For remote rural areas, only 0.1% is in the most accessible quintile, and 82.6% is in the least accessible quintile. [SABI table 3]
The full dataset is available for download on statistics.gov.scot
There were 94.2 million passengers carried by ScotRail in 2016, a small increase on 2015. [Table SUM2]
Nine per cent of the population (16+) reported using the train at least once a week in 2016. Seventy one per cent had not used the train in the last month, a decrease from seventy seven per cent in 2007. [Table 28 and Table SUM1]
The proportion of people who reported that they hadn’t used the train in the last month increased with age (59% of those aged 16-19 hadn’t used the train in the last month, compared to 91% of those aged 80+). [Table 28]
Train use was higher in higher income households (79% of those interviewed with a household income of less than £10,000 had not used the train in the last month, compared to 60% for those in households with an income of more than £40,000. [Table 28]
Of those who had used the train in the last month, the most frequent journey purpose was shopping (35%), followed by visiting friends or relatives (25%) and other recreational activities (20%). [Table 44]
People were satisfied with most aspects of rail services that the survey asks about. The level of agreement was highest with personal safety during the day (95%), ease of finding out about routes and times (90%) and ease of finding out what ticket is needed (87%). The lowest level of agreement was with the statement that train fares are good value (56%). [Table 30]
When asked what discourages train users from using the train more, the main reason given, other than nothing (53%) or “no need” (15%) was cost (12%) with the next largest proportion being ‘no nearby station’ (8%). For those who hadn’t used the train in the previous month, the main reasons were “nothing” (34%), “no need” (24%), “no nearby station” (19%), cost (9%) and “health reasons” (5%). [Table 42 & 42a]
Detailed rail statistics can be found in the Rail Chapter of Scottish Transport Statistics.
Air terminal passengers increased from 2015 to 2016, from 25.5 million to 26.9 million. [Table SUM2]
In 2016, 50 per cent of people had flown for leisure purposes, an 4 percentage point increase on 2014, when this data was last collected. Eight per cent of people had flown for business, a similar figure to 2014. [Table 37a and 38a]
Of those who flew for leisure in the last 12 months, 44% made up to two flights (return flights count as two, as does changing flights), and around a quarter made three to four flights (26%). There was an increase in the mean and median number of flights compared to 2014. [Table 37b]
Most people who flew for leisure flew to Europe. Of those who flew for leisure in the last 12 months, 74% made at least one flight to Europe in the previous year. Five per cent made at least one flight within Scotland, 30% made at least one flight to the rest of the UK and 33% made at least one flight out of Europe. [Table 37b]
Of those who flew for business in the last 12 months, most took up to two flights (35%), followed by three or four flights (17%). Over half of people who travelled for business took four flights or fewer. Around 15% took more than twenty flights (returns count as two, as does changing flights). There was a decrease in the mean and median number of business flights compared to 2014. [Table 38b]
Most people who fly for business flew within the UK. Of those who flew for business in the last 12 months, 73% had flown to the rest of the UK. Eleven per cent had flown within Scotland, 35% had flown to Europe and 21% had flown outside of Europe. [Table 38b]
The majority of people flying for business or leisure within the UK did so because it was quicker than alternative modes (84%). Just under a quarter (24%) did so because it was cheaper. [Table 39]
Detailed aviation statistics can be found in the Aviation Chapter of Scottish Transport Statistics.
Most users (84%) reported no difficulties changing between modes of public transport. Six per cent reported that they had a long wait between journeys and four per cent reported not having enough time to change modes. A lack of information about connecting modes was reported by three per cent of users. [Table 45]