More departures and better vaccination coverage will bring passengers back to public transit in Sweden


Passengers are progressively returning to public transit in Sweden, but still 10% say they have no intention of ever coming back. Two key factors that could change their decision are even better vaccination coverage and more public transit. That’s according to a new survey on the impact of the COVID-19 on our work and travel habits conducted by Transdev Sweden in partnership with Yougov (international market research and data analytics firm) in October, just over a month after the restrictions were lifted in Sweden.

Travel by public transportation is increasing and concerns about contracting COVID-19 on public transit are decreasing, although they remain at high levels. As many as 38% of all respondents are worried about being infected on public transit, down 7 percentage points from the last survey in May 2021 and a full 14 percentage points from May 2020.

We see a positive trend in the latest survey which is also confirmed by the travel figures we see across the country. It comes as a relief, of course, for an industry that has been hit hard during the pandemic. But some challenges remain. The pandemic has wiped out ten years of hard work to increase public travel. If we want to achieve our climate goals, we need to get more people using public transport. We, not only the industry but also society as a whole, need to roll up our sleeves to attract back the passengers who have left and get more people to use public transport and help us meet the climate challenge.

Eva Tiséus, Director of Marketing and Communications, Transdev Sweden

While the situation is clearing up, around 10% of those who travelled by public transport before the pandemic began still say they are unlikely to return to public transit.

Two crucial factors mentioned by those who have stopped using public transportation to encourage them to do so are that everyone should be vaccinated and that there should be more public transit available.


We see this as proof that there is momentum for public transport today. People want more public transport, not less. The pandemic must be used as a window of opportunity for society as a whole to rethink public transport and make it better.

Eva Tiséus, Director of Marketing and Communications, Transdev Sweden

This is also confirmed by 57% of all respondents who say they want to travel in a more environmentally friendly and climate-smart way in the future. A full 64% of all respondents and 81% of public transportation passengers think that more should be invested in public transit.

The report with the top five lessons learned from the latest survey can be found below.



Since May 2020, Transdev has conducted five panel surveys to better understand the impact of the pandemic on Swedes’ work and travel habits. The last survey was conducted at the end of October 2021, one month after the restrictions were released. A total of 1023 respondents took part in the survey. The sample is representative of the Swedish population in terms of gender, age and region.

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