Recruitment, Burden, Incentives and Participation in Smartphone Travel Surveys

Smartphone travel surveys are increasingly being tested and considered as a tool to help in the collection of transport-related demand data. Despite interest in these tools, there are a great many things to be understood about them before they become commonplace in data collection. One important aspect of their use relates to who will participate in these surveys, for how long, and under what circumstances (recruitment, incentives and burden). When this type of information is reported in the literature, it tends to be reported in the context of one study. Typically, each study is done with a different application thus making generalizations difficult. The Itinerum app has now been used in a number of different studies under slightly different configurations of length, recruitment, respondent burden and incentives. This provides an opportunity to draw conclusions across different studies and provide some more generalizable insights into respondent behavior with smartphone travel surveys. Despite this being based on only three case studies, the authors feel it is fair to say the following. Smartphone travel survey samples tend to under-represent older age groups. The representation of women in samples varies, but could be related to the recruitment technique; women are over-represented in studies with direct recruitment. Finally, it seems cash compensation for participation is probably the most effective at encouraging participation in a smartphone study, but that incentivization based on trip validations may be an acceptable compromise.

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • This paper was sponsored by TRB committee ABJ40 Standing Committee on Travel Survey Methods. Alternate title: ecruitment, Burden, Incentives, and Participation in Smartphone Travel Surveys
  • Authors:
    • Patterson, Zachary
    • Fitzsimmons, Kyle
    • Widener, Michael
    • Reid, Jessica
    • Hammond, David
  • Conference:
  • Date: 2018


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Digital/other
  • Features: Figures; Maps; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 15p

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01663949
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: 18-05032
  • Files: TRIS, TRB, ATRI
  • Created Date: Mar 22 2018 12:03PM