Please note that due to the COVID-19 Coronavirus outbreak, the Household Travel Survey has been postponed until further notice. 

The City of Cape Town resumed its regional household travel survey this week. The survey aims to gather data on the travel behaviour of households in Cape Town. Residents are urged to participate in the survey, which will assist in updating future transport plans.

The City of Cape Town has deployed fieldworkers to conduct its regional household travel survey within various areas across Cape Town.

‘Our objective with this survey is to retrieve an updated demographic of the city’s residents and to collect accurate information on their travel behaviour. This data will equip the City to review and update its transport network plans and the travel demand model,’ says the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Transport, Alderman Felicity Purchase.

This city-wide survey will target households in Cape Town and surrounding areas such as Stellenbosch, Franschhoek, Malmesbury, Darling, Paarl and Wellington. Information on all of the adults and school-going children per household will be required. Individual households have been randomly selected in a systematic sampling process.

‘I urge residents who are approached to participate in these interviews as we seek to obtain insight and a good grasp on the travel needs and patterns of commuters. We would be grateful if community leaders and associations could assist the City in informing residents of the survey on their various platforms,’ said Alderman Purchase.

The City is aiming to collect information such as how many employed persons there are per household; how many household members travel regularly to work and places of education; the average transport budget per household; the various modes of transport used throughout the week and the duration of their travels.

Umtha Consultancy has been contracted by the City of Cape Town to conduct and manage the roll out of this city-wide survey. Residents to note that ALL fieldworkers will be identifiable by their Umtha name tags.

Residents can be assured that the findings will not be made public as the only purpose of the survey is to collect information that will inform future planning decisions and City processes.

All of the fieldworkers conducting this survey will be monitored and supervised as the City has recruited supervisors as part of the team. These supervisors will also assist with queries on site.

Residents can be assured that all information collected will be treated anonymously, and the location of their home will by no means be revealed.

The survey will only focus on households and will exclude inhabitants of:

  • Military and police barracks
  • Prison quarters
  • Student residences
  • Old age homes
  • Religious institutions
  • Shelters
  • Non-residential hostels, school and student residences
  • Industrial areas

Household Travel Survey - Frequently Asked Questions

The City of Cape Town is conducting a Household Travel Survey to understand the travel patterns and needs of residents. Fieldworkers will be visiting areas to interview a sample of households that have been pre-selected. Here are answers to frequently asked questions about the process.

1. Do I have to let field workers into my home?

No, you will be able to complete the survey outside your home, or through your gate, if you prefer.

2. Why has my home been selected?

A sampling strategy has been drafted by a statistician from the University of Cape Town. Several responses per travel zone are required and these responses need to be statistically representative and reflect as little bias as possible. Where households selected through this randomized process refuse participation, substitutions are sought from within the same sampling frame in order to achieve the same representativity.

3. Why can the City not conduct an online survey, or send a questionnaire with the rates account?

The City of Cape Town is unable to survey every resident regarding their travel. So instead the City is seeking data from a representative sample. An online or electronic survey is not able to achieve this, as it will depend on self-selection and introduce substantive bias.

4. Why are you asking these questions?

The purpose of the survey is to collect updated demographics, travel behaviour, and employment information required to review and update the City’s transport plans, to update the City’s strategic travel demand model, and to inform other future planning decisions and City processes. The information obtained through the regional household travel survey project will be captured and converted to useful information through model estimation and data analysis. The survey will include questions that help the City to understand peak travel behaviour and travel purposes.

5. How long does it take to complete the survey?

Completion time is an average of 30 minutes.

6. Does everyone in a home need to complete the survey?

For households with less than four persons, all members are to be surveyed. In households with more than four persons, a maximum of four persons may be surveyed.

7. How can I be sure that my personal information will not be shared or leaked?

Since the final data set could be made available for further research if needed, sensitive and critical information such as GPS location, street name and house numbers, will be treated as highly confidential. Should the dataset be made available for research, these fields will be removed to protect your personal information. Data from the electronic survey will be stored on secured servers. Only authorised users will be granted access. Username and passwords will be allocated to relevant personnel who have access to the database.

8. Why are cell phones used to capture the data?

The Household and Travel Diary surveyors make use of Android mobile devices to access a survey instrument application to capture participants’ data. This data will be downloaded for quality assurance and analysis by a designated user with system administrator-level access credentials. The fieldworkers carrying out the survey do not need to type in extensive information but will mark pre-populated fields. The fieldworker might also ask respondents to indicate on their mobile device certain locational data. The use of Android mobile devices with immediate upload-to-cloud capabilities reduces the need for time-consuming data-capture and mitigates concerns with data-loss through theft of devices, for example. All of the locational data will be masked and will not be visible to anyone other than the City’s modelling team, and respondents name and other details are not linked to the survey.

9. Why is the surveying done in the late afternoon and early evening?

The City of Cape Town’s transport planning team needs to take work trips into account, to plan transport services that mitigate peak-hour congestion. Therefore, we have to interview people who work outside of their homes during the day – and capture information after working hours.

10. When will the findings of the survey be released?

The findings will not be released since the purpose of the survey is to collect updated demographics, travel behaviour, and employment information to assist the City to review and update its statutory transport plans, strategic travel demand model and inform other planning processes and decisions. The final data set, however, could be made available for further research if needed, in which case all sensitive and critical information will be treated as highly confidential.