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TRB 91st Annual Meeting (January 22-26, 2012)
Emerging Methods and Developments in Travel Surveys
Jan 23 2012 2:00PM- 3:45PM
Hilton, International Center
Are Cell Phone Samples Needed for Studies of Walking Activity? (12-0265)
The growth in cell-phone-only households represents a challenge for the collection of survey data. Cell-phone-only households have distinct socio-demographic characteristics, which may result in different travel behavior. To explore those differences, as well to investigate the impact of including a cell phone component in active transportation research, a representative sample of New Jersey households was surveyed with a random-digit dialing survey that included 1,200 completed interviews (800 based on a statewide landline sample, 400 from a landline oversample of Jersey City) and 311 statewide cell-phone interviews, of which 80 were cell-phone-only respondents. The survey explored walking behavior and perceived characteristics of the pedestrian environment. Socio-demographic characteristics, the frequency of walking and home location characteristics are compared using Chi-square tests of significance between sample pairs as well as multivariate analysis (ordered probit). Cell-phone-only respondents were typically younger and poorer, with a greater proportion of renters, carless households and minorities. It was found that cell-only households walked more frequently, but this was due to their distinct socio-demographic characteristics, not their cell phone use per se. The implication for any analysis of rates or trends in walking (and probably other travel behavior) is that cell-only households must be included via cell-phone sample supplementing a landline sample. However, multivariate analysis of the correlates of walking may not be overly biased if socio-demographics relevant to cell-phone only respondents are collected and included in analysis.
Lachapelle, Ugo , Universite du Quebec a Montreal, Canada
Weiner, Marc , Rutgers University
Noland, Robert B., Rutgers University
Transportation Research Board. 500 Fifth St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20001
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