COVID-19 Public Attitudes Survey Data: Wave 6

Transport Scotland is monitoring public attitudes to transport and travel during the COVID-19 outbreak. We are doing this through a telephone survey carried out on our behalf with a representative sample of over 16s across Scotland. This information provides the key findings from the survey. This information is used to gain an understanding of the ways in which the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting current travel behaviour and intentions for future travel in Scotland. This information cannot be used to determine compliance with government guidance relating to non-essential travel in isolation. Police Scotland hold information in relation to penalty notices issued under emergency legislation. These findings are for the fifth wave of the survey which took place from 22 - 28 July 2020. The key findings are:

Current Behaviour

  • The vast majority of people have left home at least once in the past 7 days (91%). This has been fairly consistent across all six waves but appears to be increasing.
  • The main trip purposes continue to be to shop for essential items or groceries (89% leaving the house at least once) and outdoor exercise (76%). Almost a third (32%) have gone to someone else’s house and one in five (20%) have left home to run errands for someone else; or to go to work (21%). There has been an increase in people shopping for non-essential items (household goods, clothes, etc.) which is now at 32%, up from 24%.
  • Across the waves there have been changes in terms of trip purpose. There has been an increase in trips for non-essential shopping and for going to someone else’s house. Since the beginning of phase 3 of the route map, there has been a slight increase in the number of people travelling to go to work but this has remained consistent between wave 5 and wave 6.
  • People continue to shop for essential items less frequently (1-3 times a week) whereas they take part in outdoor exercise more frequently (6-7 times per week). For visits to someone else’s house or to run errands for someone, this is done for the most part once a week, and for those that shop for non-essential items this is mostly done 1-3 times a week. For those travelling to work, the majority are doing so between 4-7 times a week.
  • Private car or van remains the main mode of transport used across most trip purposes in the past 7 days, with walking or wheeling the other main method used. For those travelling to work, 74% indicate that they are travelling by car or van; 16% have used active modes; while 10% have said that they used public transport.
  • Prior to lockdown, car or private van was the main mode of transport used by respondents. However,  42% say they are using car or van less since lockdown restrictions came into effect and 39% are walking or wheeling more than they did prior to lockdown.
  • Over a third of people (36%) have access to a bike for adult use. A further 4% have access to a bike but it is not roadworthy.
  • Currently, people are more likely to: use contactless payments (62%); exercise outside the home by walking (51%); contact family and friends by phone, video call or texting apps (51%); shop closer to home (48%); and use conference calls and video call to communicate with colleagues, customers and clients (44%) compared to before restrictions were put in place.
  • 42% of people are more likely to shop online to purchase products they would normally buy in-store; 19% are more likely to use home delivery for supermarket shopping more.

Looking Ahead

  • Concerns about using public transport remain high although are decreasing. 61% of people are very or fairly concerned about contracting or spreading the virus while using public transport; and 61% are very or fairly concerned about having enough space to observe physical distancing on public transport.  This has been fairly consistent across the previous five waves of the survey.
  • 47% agree with the statement “I will avoid public transport and use my car or other vehicle more than I did before when restrictions on transport are lifted”. This is a 7% increase on the previous wave. The main reasons for avoiding public transport are the risk that others are still carrying the disease; cleanliness or hygiene on-board public transport; convenience; and unable to stay 1 metre apart.
  • 93% agree with the statement “I will wear a face covering if using public transport”.
  • 24% agree that they will make more journeys by public transport now that more places are open.
  • 53% of people say they are likely to book at least one leisure trip in Scotland, compared to 30% who say they will book a leisure trip in the rest of the UK ; and 15% who say they will book a leisure trip abroad.
  • 35% agree that they will work from home more often in the future.
  • 64% agree that they will walk and cycle more.
  • When schools return, future intentions for travel to school show respondents are less likely to travel by bus and slightly more likely to travel by car. However, the majority of people (54%) intend to walk and did so prior to lockdown.

Published Date 6 Aug 2020 Type Topic