Despite heavy traffic, youngsters aspire to a car, reveals study


However, a little more than half of those interviewed also admitted that driving would be a difficult task.

Does owning a car still figure among the aspirations of young Indians, even in a traffic-choked city like Bengaluru? An attitudinal study on car ownership revealed that young adults are open to buying a car as soon as they can afford it.

However, a little more than half of those interviewed also admitted that driving would be a difficult task due to traffic congestion.

The study, ‘Analysis of the influences of attitudinal factors on car ownership decisions among urban young adults in a developing country like India’, was conducted by Meghna Verma, M. Manoj and Ashish Verma from the MS Ramaiah Institute of Management and the Department of Civil Engineering, Indian Institute of Science (IISc.), Bangalore. It was published in a peer-reviewed magazine on Wednesday. The researchers conducted the survey in universities in Bengaluru. The average age of the respondents was 22 and they had about 6 months’ work experience. About 52 per cent of them were male. About 56 per cent had qualifications of post-graduation or above. The survey sample size was 700.

Keen on cars

The sample surveyed was said to have a ‘high tendency’ to own a car in the future as 58 per cent had a driving licence and nearly 28 per cent also owned a car. As many as 77 per cent had at least one car in their house. In fact, the sample’s percentage of individuals possessing a licence and of those who own a car is higher (43 and 27 per cent respectively) compared to a similar case study in Hong Kong, China, conducted in 2002 by a different set of researchers.

The data suggested that there is no significant association between the location of the home of the respondents and car ownership.

Though more than half the students commuted to their institutes on foot, nearly a quarter used a two-wheeler and only one-sixth travelled by bus.

Comparison with Hong Kong

A comparison with Hong Kong showed that the share of youngsters choosing public transport (bus and metro) in Bengaluru is 66 per cent lower than in Hong Kong. Apart from the possibility of short commute distance and dependency on walking, the study also pointed to the perception of public transport as a reason for this difference.

“It is not just about today; we also have to look at tomorrow. Bengaluru has seen a lot of infrastructural improvements in the last five to ten years, but the situation remains the same, if not worse. We will have to reduce car ownership eventually, and dissuading youngsters who will be part of the workforce in the next few years, will help,” said Prof, Ashish Verma from the IISc.

Low rating for BMTC

According to responses to questions on different modes of transport based on comfort, reliability, safety, etc, the BMTC received the lowest rating among young adults. “Surprisingly, the metro system, though in its infancy, receives reasonable ratings,” the study says. Car received the best scores on all attributes. Notably, the motorised two-wheeler is perceived as less safe than a car.

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Printable version | Jan 18, 2020 6:18:48 PM |

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