Gender and Metro ridership: more women ride than men, with some exceptions

gender_v_income-01 (1)

The above chart is based on Metro’s 2012 Customer Satisfaction Survey and focuses on the issue of ridership by gender. The gist of it: more women than men overall ride Metro although there are notable exceptions: higher-income riders tend to be male, as are riders with a car available to them.

Recently, Transportation Nation reported the latest data from the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey which revealed a gender gap in transit ridership: Although women make up 47 percent of the workforce, 50.5 percent of transit riders are women.

“Higher income riders tend to be choice riders who chose to ride Metro even though they have access to a car” said Jeff Boberg, of Metro’s Research Department.  “We have also found out, through focus groups and other surveys, that women tend to factor personal security higher than men.  We have also found that people who ride on Metro buses and trains feel safer on the transit system than those who don’t.  This could at least partially explain the gender gap at higher incomes.”

A greater proportion of Metro riders are in the lower income brackets, which accounts for the overall female percentage of 52%, despite much lower percentages in the higher income ranges.

What do you think? What are the reasons that more choice riders tend to be men? Comment please!