The German Mobility Panel is a longitudinal survey that collects travel data in Germany since 1994. The survey focuses on people’s everyday mobility and on car mileage and fuel consumption in private households.
Knowing how and why people travel is an essential information for transport planning. Traffic and passenger counts can give valuable information, but mobility surveys focus on people themselves. The MOP provides answers to the following questions:
- Which activities and tasks determine our everyday life?
- How do we combine different activities in different places?
- Which transport modes do we use?
- Which distance do we travel daily?
- How much time do we spend travelling?
- How are cars used and how much fuel do they consume?
The MOP survey has two parts. In the first part the everyday mobility of the respondents is surveyed over one week. In the second part the car use is surveyed (particularly distances travelled and fuel consumption).
For the everyday mobility survey all household members (from age 10) of a representative sample of households are asked to fill in a trip diary in the course of one week. Each person reports all trips with start and end time, means of transport used (bicycle, car, etc.), trip purpose (work, shopping, etc.) and distance covered. Respondents are also asked to provide some information about themselves (age, occupation, etc.) and about the household (car ownership, number of household members, etc.). This everyday mobility survey is carried out every year in autumn since 1994.
Households with car ownership participating in the survey are asked to participate in the second part of the MOP survey, which collects data on mileage and fuel consumption. For each car in the household respondents fill in a odometer reading and car mileage diary in the course of eight weeks in which they report every refuelling event including amount of gasoline dispensed, refuelling cost, date and current mileage. Respondents also report the car mileage at the beginning of the response period as well as technical characteristics of the vehicle (year, fuel type, power, etc.). Car mileage and fuel consumption are surveyed every year in spring.