Real change in transport price by mode
Assessment made on 01 Oct 2005
ClassificationTransport (Primary theme)
- TERM 020
Policy issue: Fair and efficient pricing across modes
On average, passenger transport prices have increased at a higher rate than consumer prices. For freight transport prices, no EU-wide data exists, but examples for two countries indicate that freight prices have declined.
Prices are easy to measure and compare over time as long as the product or service in question stays the same. This is the case for the assessment depicted in figure 1. However, the transport product consumed changes over time. In passenger cars for example, there is a shift to more comfortable and luxurious cars. This makes comparisons of transport prices over time difficult. This holds especially for the prices of car purchase, rail and air travel. The price and quality characteristics of these products have changed substantially during the last years.
Transport price indexes show that real passenger transport prices have increased in the majority of the EU Member States, making transport services more expensive in comparison with other consumer goods and services. Differences appear between member states (see Box 1) and modes. In general, it appears that the observed growth in transport volume (see TERM 12 - passenger transport demand) is not caused by falling price levels.
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