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Abstract

Commuting is a major component in the creation of traffic and travel problems. Thus, more attention should be given to its practice. Private car (PC) transport, the dominant mode of commuting in most of the world’s major cities, creates traffic-related social problems such as traffic congestion, traffic fatalities and injuries, and adverse environmental impacts. This study proposes a novel commuting travel mode—a customized bus (CB) transit system that provides advanced, personalized, and flexible demand-interactive minibus service using Internet, telephone, and smartphone apps. The aim was to assess and compare the performance of CB with PC and with conventional public transport (PT) systems. A methodological analysis framework was constructed to quantify operational performance measures that enable the comparison of the different travel modes. This analysis framework was then applied to two cities—Auckland, New Zealand, and Paris, France—to assess the overall performance metrics of PC, PT, and CB, such as travel costs, travel time, and fuel consumption. This comparison sheds light on the differences between the travel modes, their viability, and their competitiveness. The results of the case study show that PC is the fastest commuting mode, but the travel costs incurred by it are twice as much as for PT and CB and involve higher fuel consumption. CB also can provide a useful alternative for commuter trips in Auckland and Paris. For increased commuter trips, CB proved to be more efficient than the PC and PT modes. Finally, the CB system tends to be more profitable in Auckland than in Paris.

DOI

http://dx.doi.org/10.5038/2375-0901.19.2.4