On May 15th, the Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) announced that the National Household Travel Survey (NHTS), the most comprehensive survey of U.S. travel patterns and characteristics in more than six years, will be released in August. The August release will combine new long-distance travel information with short-distance NHTS data released earlier this year, providing the first comprehensive look at travel patterns and characteristics across the United States.
NHTS, conducted by BTS and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) in 2001 and 2002, touches on a wide range of topics, including the amount and purpose of travel, the various travel modes used by Americans, the time and miles spent traveling,as well as who owns the vehicles used and how are they used. It also examines relationships between travel and specific household and demographic characteristics. Based on a national sample size of approximately 26,000 households and interviews with 60,000 individuals, the NHTS expands on and replaces the 1995 National Personal Transportation Survey and American Travel Survey projects.
“This joint effort by BTS and FHWA will give unique data to decision-makers at all levels of government to help them shape the transportation system of the 21st Century,” said U.S. Secretary of Transportation Norman Y. Mineta. “NHTS is a panoramic view of how Americans travel, so it is a picture of America.”
“Through continued study and development of NHTS data, we can sharpen our understanding of local and long distance travel behavior in our country, and begin to assess its implications for our safety and our economy,said BTS Deputy Director Rick Kowalewski. “This data will support the planning and decisions for the transportation system in the coming years and decades.”
In addition to providing comprehensive information on both local and long-distance travel, NHTS focuses on new groups and areas of interest, such as travel by age five and under; transportation issues associated with persons with disabilities; and travel by non-U.S. born residents. Additional items also include Internet use, occupation, and traveler attitudes.
The NHTS long distance travel data and an overview report of the data will be available at www.bts.gov in August.