GETTING AROUND What’s taking the place of taking the car?
Americans may love cars, but our relationship
with the automobile is racing in new directions, according to AARP’s analysis of the
latest National Household Travel Survey from
the Federal Highway Administration. Not
only are older Americans taking fewer trips
and traveling fewer miles, but this nationwide
study of travel patterns shows that we are
using private vehicles less and public transportation more. In areas where public transportation is available, almost 20 percent of
people 50-plus reported traveling on it at least
once in the month before they were surveyed.
Chalk it up in part to higher gas prices and
a slumping economy, but instead of taking the
Chevy to the levee, we’re leaving it in the
garage—and riding a bus. —Holly Zimmerman
Source: “How the Travel Patterns of Older Adults Are Changing: Highlights from the 2009 National
Household Travel Survey,” a study by the AARP Public Policy Institute, available at aarp.org/travelpatterns.
From 2001 to 2009,
the number of trips
50-plus took on public
transportation went up