Belgians travel mostly on foot or by car, but bicycles increasingly popular

Belgians travel mostly on foot or by car, but bicycles increasingly popular
Credit: Belga

Belgians travel most often on foot (95% of respondents) or by car (94%), a survey by the Mobility Department revealed on Thursday.

As part of the survey, 4,600 people aged between 18 and 79 were asked how often they used various modes of transport on a daily basis.

Public transport and cycling were the two main alternatives to the car, according to the survey, which focused on mobility habits. They were favoured by 65% and 56% of respondents respectively. This can be explained, in part, by environmental and climate issues, the Mobility Department pointed out.

Almost a third of cyclists wanted to increase their use of the bicycle in the next twelve months, the survey found, while one in five non-cyclists indicated a desire to take up cycling. Additionally, 14% of non-electric bicycle users said they were considering switching to electric bikes.

The majority of the cycling trips were made for journeys to and from work or for shopping. However, there were disparities between the regions: just over a quarter of Flemish people said they never cycled, compared with 65% in Brussels and 70% in Wallonia.

The survey also highlights that more than half of respondents take the train at least once a year. Four out of ten (39%) only use it a few times a year, but among younger people, rail is much more popular: almost a quarter of 18-24 year olds, mainly students, board a train at least once a week. This proportion of regular users gradually decreases with age.

Finally, a quarter of respondents were identified as ‘sedentary’, i.e. neither cycling nor walking at least once a week. This proportion increases in non-urban areas, reaching 27% in Flanders and 32% in Wallonia.

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