CSO statistical publication, , 11am
The National Travel Survey is a household survey that focusses primarily on the travel behaviour of respondents and prior to 2021, was most recently carried out two years previous, in 2019. In both years, it was carried out using the General Household Survey. However, in 2021, the mode of data collection changed to CAWI (Computer Assisted Web Interviewing), while in 2019, face-to-face interviews were used.
When the last National Travel Survey was carried out in the fourth quarter of 2019, it was pre COVID-19. A global pandemic occurred in the intervening years between the 2019 survey and the National Travel Survey of 2021. When the survey was carried out in the fourth quarter of 2021, society and the economy had started to return to normal. Non-essential retail and hospitality had returned with certain restrictions still in place, children and older students had returned to schools, colleges and places of higher education, and remained open notwithstanding some school closures owing to local outbreaks of COVID-19, and people had started to return to work, many on a phased and/or blended working basis.
This publication is the second in a series of four publications presenting the results of the National Travel Survey (NTS), which was carried out in the fourth quarter of 2021. This publication focusses on sustainable mobility such as walking and cycling as modes of travel, and sustainable transport including public transport and electric vehicles, and the facilitators and inhibitors to these modes of transport. The first publication in the series ‘Travel Behaviour Trends 2021’ which was published on 10th June, reported on the travel behaviour of respondents, including when they are most likely to travel, preferred modes of transport and purpose of their trips, distance and duration. The third publication in the series ‘Passenger Mobility and Road Safety 2021’ will be published on 8th July, and will focus on passenger mobility and road safety. The fourth and last publication ‘Impact of COVID-19 on Travel Behaviour’ will concentrate on how COVID-19 has impacted our travel behaviour, and will be published on 19th July.
The NTS results will be used to compile statistical indicators across a broad spectrum of transport indicators, including for journey purpose and modes of travel, which will help monitor the implementation of existing transport policy and will inform future transport initiatives.
To ensure that data was collected for all seven days of the week, each person participating in the NTS was assigned a selected ‘travel reference day’. The travel reference day was a maximum of three days prior to the day on which the interview was conducted to ensure that recall was not compromised.
Only travel within the island of Ireland, made by residents of the State, was included in the survey. While the NTS collected information on work related travel for most occupations, it excluded the business related travel of professional drivers (e.g., bus and taxi drivers) and other occupations where travel is integral to the role (e.g., postal delivery workers). It is important to note, when interpreting the figures and comparing them to other data sources, that the NTS journey purpose of 'work' includes both commuter and business travel.
The NTS survey data is collected from individuals in private households aged 18 years and over. Data on travel behaviour is collected from just one person per household. Institutional households, (e.g., nursing homes, barracks, boarding schools, hotels, etc.) are not covered by the survey.
It is also worth noting that the results contained in this publication are based on travel patterns for a particular quarter (Q4), which may not be fully representative of the year as a whole. Therefore, particular care should be taken when interpreting the results, especially if extrapolating them to annualised results. For further guidelines on using the NTS data, please refer to the Background Notes.
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