Active travel and bus use fall while travel by air and car continues to rise

Figures published by Transport Scotland today show that the amount of people cycling, walking and using buses as a share of all journeys made in Scotland, has continued to decline. Meanwhile the share of people choosing to travel by car or plane has increased year on year.

The total number of journeys made by bus fell to 380 million for the first time, in 2018. It is also very unlikely that the Scottish Government will reach its target to increase the number of journeys made by bicycle to 10% by 2020. The present share of journeys made by bicycle is stagnant at 1.4%.

Figures show:

  • Public transport journeys down by 8 million
  • A further fall in the number of bus journeys
  • The number of registered vehicles at an all-time high
  • A 2% increase in air passenger traffic

Mike Rumbles Scottish Liberal Democrat transport spokesperson and MSP for the North East said:

“Sadly the figures published by Transport Scotland today show just how little is being done by the Scottish Government to promote active travel and public transport in Scotland.

“There is no point having government ministers standing up in the Parliament and paying lip service to environmentally friendly and healthy ways to travel if nothing is going to be done to improve the situation.  

“We need to completely rethink the way we operate buses in Scotland. Passengers want frequency, reliability and convenience but rather than improving quality and encouraging more people to use the bus, many services are being reduced or cut altogether.

“In 2018, the Scottish Parliament unanimously backed a Scottish Liberal Democrat amendment calling for all school pupils to have access to cycling proficiency training. If the Scottish Government seriously want to see more people choosing active travel in the future, that is exactly the type of measure that we need to see from government ministers and not just from parties in opposition.”      

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