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Car stickiness: Heuristics and biases in travel choice

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  • Innocenti, Alessandro
  • Lattarulo, Patrizia
  • Pazienza, Maria Grazia

Abstract

We conduct a laboratory experiment to investigate the factors determining travel mode choice. Two different scenarios are considered. In the first scenario, subjects have to decide whether to commute by car or by metro. Metro costs are fixed, while car costs are uncertain and determined by the joint effect of casual events and traffic congestion. In the second scenario, subjects have to decide whether to travel by car or by bus, whose costs are determined by a different combination of chance and traffic congestion. Subjects receive feedback information on the actual travel times of both modes. We find that individuals show a marked preference for cars, are inclined to confirm their first choice and exhibit travel mode stickiness. We conclude that travel mode choice is subject to cognitive heuristics and biases leading to robust deviations from rational behaviour.

Suggested Citation

  • Innocenti, Alessandro & Lattarulo, Patrizia & Pazienza, Maria Grazia, 2013. "Car stickiness: Heuristics and biases in travel choice," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 25(C), pages 158-168.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:trapol:v:25:y:2013:i:c:p:158-168
    DOI: 10.1016/j.tranpol.2012.11.004
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Rey, David & Dixit, Vinayak V. & Ygnace, Jean-Luc & Waller, S. Travis, 2016. "An endogenous lottery-based incentive mechanism to promote off-peak usage in congested transit systems," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 46(C), pages 46-55.
    2. repec:eee:phsmap:v:483:y:2017:i:c:p:74-82 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. David Hensher & Corinne Mulley, 2015. "Modal image: candidate drivers of preference differences for BRT and LRT," Transportation, Springer, vol. 42(1), pages 7-23, January.
    4. Liu, Xue & Ma, Shoufeng & Tian, Junfang & Jia, Ning & Li, Geng, 2015. "A system dynamics approach to scenario analysis for urban passenger transport energy consumption and CO2 emissions: A case study of Beijing," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 85(C), pages 253-270.
    5. Patrizia Lattarulo & Valentino Masucci & Maria Grazia Pazienza, 2014. "Is it really impossible to change transport mode behaviours? An experiment for sustainable urban mobility," Rapporti e ricerche 600, Istituto Regionale per la Programmazione Economica della Toscana.

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