Accompanying study on the introduction of fare-free public transit in Monheim am Rhein, Germany


The city of Monheim introduced fare-free public transit for all residents in spring 2020. In this study, the Chair and Institute of Urban and Transport Planning tries to find out what changes in mobility in mobility behaviour can be observed.

The basis for the study of the effects is the evaluation of existing surveys before the introduction of free public transport as well as the implementation of a household survey and further traffic counts after the introduction. In order to ensure a uniform survey design as well as a uniform data preparation for the survey already conducted in 2018, the household survey on mobility behaviour in the SrV (System repräsentativer Verkehrsbefragungen) design was subcontracted to the University of Dresden together with Omnitrend. This ensures the comparability of the results. The effects of free travel on mobility behaviour were determined by a before-and-after comparison of essential criteria of the household surveys. In parallel, the development of public transport in the city was investigated by analysing passenger numbers on the lines of the Monheim public transport company. Based on the data obtained, it was possible to evaluate, among other things, the use of transport by the people of Monheim as well as the change and distribution of traffic volumes in the city area. Based on the results, effects on the public transport offer and the revenue situation of public transport in Monheim were also analysed. Due to the onset of the Corona pandemic, which was accompanied by the introduction of free public transport in Monheim am Rhein in spring 2020, further studies had to be consulted in order to separate the effects of the Corona pandemic from the effects of free public transport as far as possible.


The evaluations of the surveys provided the following findings:

  • More than 90% of the Monheim population rate the free public transport service as good or rather good.
  • In domestic traffic, the modal split share of public transport has increased continuously since the introduction of free public transport.
  • The share of journeys made by private car in domestic traffic has fallen from 47% in 2018 to 34% in 2022.
  • The more frequent use of public transport is due in particular to shopping and service trips and leisure trips.
  • People who did not have a season ticket before the introduction of free travel make proportionately more trips by public transport after the introduction of free travel.


09.2021 - 09.2024



Dr.-Ing. Conny Louen