Here are the top reasons why Londoners give up on public transport

Rebecca Smith
Overcrowded and unreliable services were among the biggest barriers to travel
Overcrowded and unreliable services were among the biggest barriers to travel (Source: Getty)

You may have your suspicions about what could actually drive people away from using public transport in the capital, but Transport for London (TfL) has identified specifically what the main reasons are.

And for anyone who has had the pleasure of waiting for a Tube at rush hour, you may be unsurprised to hear the top reason cited was overcrowded services.

Read more: TfL says major Tube upgrades cancelled because of dip in passenger numbers

For this month's meeting of TfL's customer service and operational performance panel, the transport body provided updated research on the main barriers to public transport use for 2016.

Here are the main reasons:

Barrier to public transport use Percentage of respondents
1. Overcrowded services 59 per cent
2. Slow journey times 42 per cent
3. Unreliable services 40 per cent
4. Cost of tickets 38 per cent
5. Concern about anti-social behaviour of others 30 per cent
6. Dirty environment on the bus/train 26 per cent
7. Fear of crime getting to/from and waiting for the bus/train 21 per cent
8. Fear of crime on the bus/train 19 per cent
9. Fear about knife crime 18 per cent
10. Dirty environment getting to the bus/train 18 per cent
11. Fear of terrorist attack 15 per cent
12. Risk of accidents 10 per cent
13. Lack of info about how to use public transport 10 per cent
14. Graffiti 8 per cent

The likes of slow journey times and unreliable services were viewed as greater barriers than any safety or security concerns.

Overcrowded and unreliable services and slow journey times taking the top spots of concerns does though, reflect a significant change from 10 years ago, when TfL said fear of crime and anti-social behaviour was one of the primary reasons for not using public transport.

However, while the worry over the threat of a terror attack still features far down the list of barriers to travel, the concern has risen steadily since 2014 in TfL's research.

The percentage of those worried about the cost of tickets has dropped 10 per cent in three years - in 2013, it was a greater concern than both unreliable services and slow journey times.

TfL said its survey distinguished between more generalised anxiety while travelling, and specific episodes of concern which provides more actionable results, both for the transport body and the police.

Read more: These are the best and worst Tube lines as ranked by Londoners

Related articles