Thursday, 29 July 2010

National travel survey

The Department for Transport has released a heap of cycling statistics from the National Travel Survey here.

On average in 2009, people made 16 journeys by bicycle, out of a total of 973 journeys (i.e. 1.6% of journeys were on a bike). The average distance travelled by bicycle was 46 miles over the year, or 2.9 miles per trip. Over recent years the number of trips has been steady, but distances increasing. 14% of people say they ride a bicycle at least once a week and a further 9% said they do so at least once a month.

Men in their late teens and forties make the most cycling trips. Men in their forties are more likely than other adults to own a bicycle, and they ride the longest distances (or at least they claim to).

37% of cyclists mainly ride on the roads, 31% mainly on cycle paths, and 21% mainly off-road (the rest on a mixture of all three). Commuting, leisure and other reasons each account for around a third of cycle trips, and the months of March-October account for three-quarters of all cycle trips.

I'm left surprised at how many people own bikes (about a third of adults), yet how little they ride them. It's not so much the number of rides. As far as I can figure out, people who own bikes must be riding them about once a week on average, more in summer, less in winter - which sounds plausible. But an average trip of less than three miles means that an awful lot of rides must be over within a matter of minutes.


Matthew said...

I just dusted off my bike recently. Sometimes its easy to forget about it when you're driving everywhere. However, as gas prices creep, the bike tends to be a little more prevalent in my mind.


Ships And Trips Travel

townmouse said...

I don't think a lot of people know how long their rides are. Unless they've got a GPS or plot them on a map, it's quite hard to tell. I bet some of those 'three mile' rides are actually 10 miles or more, especially if they're done at a leisurely pace along a nice flat cycle path