National Travel Survey statistics

National Travel Survey statistics information.

The National Travel Survey (NTS) is the primary source of data on personal travel patterns in Great Britain. The NTS is an established household survey which has been running continuously since 1988. It is designed to monitor long-term trends in personal travel and to inform the development of policy.

The survey collects information on how, why, when and where people travel as well as factors affecting travel (eg car availability and driving licence holding).

Since 2002, the Department for Transport (DfT) has commissioned the National Centre for Social Research to conduct the survey fieldwork. Data collection consists of a face-to-face interview and a 1 week self-completed written travel diary. In 2013, the survey coverage changed from sampling residents of all Great Britain to residents of England only. Approximately 16,000 individuals, in 7,000 households in England, participate in the NTS each year.

Technical information

NTS data is collected via 2 main sources: face-to-face interviews with people in their homes and a 7 day travel diary, allowing travel patterns to be linked with individual characteristics. The NTS covers travel by people in all age groups, including children.

NTS technical reports for earlier years are available on request.

External websites

NTS research datasets available from the UK Data Service

Future developments

The Department for Transport is seeking views on options for changing and improving the collection of short walks data for the National Travel Survey.

Currently National Travel Survey walking data is collected from respondents using a 7 day travel diary. Following an experiment in 2013, it was discovered that short walks under 1 mile were under reported. We are looking at ways to address this issue.

DfT ran a public consultation, on the future design of the National Travel Survey from June to September 2011. The consultation sought users’ views on the design of the NTS from 2013 onwards. The consultation document put forward a number of proposals to develop the NTS while reducing data collection costs.

A report containing a summary of responses to the consultation and details of the decisions the department have made regarding the design of the survey from 2013 was published on 19 January 2012.

A number of other NTS research and methodology reports have been published previously. Further information and copies of older publications are available on request.


The following factsheets based on NTS data, have been published since 2010. Older factsheets are available on request.

National statistics

Statistics from the National Travel Survey were assessed during 2010 by the UK Statistics Authority. An assessment report was published in October 2010. The statistics were confirmed as National Statistics in July 2011.

Contact us

National travel survey statistics enquiries

Publications released during 2014

  1. National Travel Survey: 2013

    • Statistics - national statistics

Publications released during 2013

  1. National Travel Survey: 2012

    • Statistics - national statistics

Publications released during 2012

  1. National Travel Survey: 2011

    • Statistics - national statistics

Publications released during 2011

  1. National Travel Survey: 2010

    • Statistics - national statistics

Data tables associated with this series

  1. Average number of trips made and distance travelled (NTS01)

    • Statistical data set
  2. Driving licence holding and vehicle availability (NTS02)

    • Statistical data set
  3. How people travel (mode) (NTS03)

    • Statistical data set
  4. Why people travel (trip purpose) (NTS04)

    • Statistical data set
  5. When people travel (NTS05)

    • Statistical data set
  6. Travel by age and gender (NTS06)

    • Statistical data set
  7. Travel by car availability, income, ethnic group, household type and NS-SEC (NTS07)

    • Statistical data set
  8. Accessibility (NTS08)

    • Statistical data set
  9. Vehicle mileage and occupancy (NTS09)

    • Statistical data set
  10. Travel by region and area type of residence (NTS99)

    • Statistical data set