Description / objective
Information can be provided to travelers both in respect of the intended service offer before a particular trip is undertaken, and related to the specific performance achievement on the day. The former is most useful in journey planning, but the latter provides the knowledge potentially to change trip routing on the day through emergency and incident advice and also dynamic journey planners.
Real-time traveler information is one of the most widespread ITS applications. Travel information displays can be provided at home before the journey, at the stop prior to boarding, and on the vehicle during the trip, and alert services can be communicated to a variety of personal media.
Advantages and cautions
Traveler information has relatively little value for high-frequency services, typically operated at planned headways rather than to a specific timetable, and can only affect travel behavior where there is a realistic alternative routing for the journey. It is of the greatest value for low-frequency services, for which fixed travel information displays may prove prohibitively expensive and alert services or SMS automated enquiry services thus prove more appropriate.