UK Data Service data catalogue record for:

National Travel Survey, 1995-2001: Special Licence Access

Title details

SN: 7804
Title: National Travel Survey, 1995-2001: Special Licence Access
Persistent identifier: 10.5255/UKDA-SN-7804-1
Series: National Travel Survey [National Travel Survey, 1995- : Special Licence Access]
Depositor: Department for Transport
Principal investigator(s): Department for Transport
Data collector(s): National Centre for Social Research


The citation for this study is:

Department for Transport. (2015). National Travel Survey, 1995-2001: Special Licence Access. [data collection]. UK Data Service. SN: 7804,

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Subject Categories

Travel and transport


Abstract copyright UK Data Service and data collection copyright owner.

The National Travel Survey (NTS) is a series of household surveys designed to provide regular, up-to-date data on personal travel and monitor changes in travel behaviour over time. The first NTS was commissioned by the Ministry of Transport in 1965. Further periodic surveys were carried out in 1972/73, 1975/76, 1978/79 and 1985/86 (the UK Data Service holds End-User Licence data from 1972 onwards and Special Licence and Secure Access data from 2002 onwards). Since July 1988 the NTS has been carried out as a continuous survey with field work being carried out in every month of the year, and an annual set sample of over 5,000 addresses. From 2002, the NTS sample was increased approximately threefold, to approximately 15,000 per year. The advantage of the continuous study is that users will be able to discern seasonal and cyclical movements as well as trend changes over time. The NTS is carried out primarily for the purposes of government. The most fundamental use of the National Travel Survey within the Department for Transport (DfT) is as core base data for key transport models. These are critical to the assessment and appraisal of transport scheme proposals (national and local), transport policy proposals, and contribute to the development of our long-term strategy. The NTS data is used to develop consistent sets of transport policies. Because it relates travel to travellers, it makes it possible to relate policies to people and to predict their impact. The survey provides detailed information on different types of travel: where people travel from and to, distance, purpose and mode. The NTS records personal and socio-economic information to distinguish between different types of people, and the differences in the way they travel and how often they do so. The NTS is the only source of national information on subjects such as walking which provide a context for the results of more local studies.

Further information may be found on the National Travel Survey webpage.

End-User Licence, Special Licence and Secure Access NTS data
The UK Data Archive holds three versions of the NTS:
  • the End User Licence (EUL) versions (SNs 5340 and 6108) contain a comprehensive range of NTS data at Government Office Region geographic level and should be sufficient for most research needs. EUL data are available to registered users of the UK Data Service (see the Administrative and Access section below for details).
  • The Special Licence versions (SNs 7553 and 7804) contain more detailed travel (including accidents), demographic and socio-economic data, and the geographic level is Local Authority/Unitary Authority. Special Licence data are subject to more restricted access conditions.
  • The Secure Access version (SN 7559) contains more detailed information and postcode sector geographies. Secure Access data are subject to further restricted access conditions, including the completion of a training course.
Full information about the variables contained at each level are available in the NTS Table Structures spreadsheet, available in the documentation.

This study comprises Special Licence Access NTS data for 1995-2001, which was first deposited in 2015. The variable names have been edited to match the newest NTS data and the contents of the files reflect reprocessing of older data done by the NTS team. The standard access End User Licence version of the NTS 1995-2001 is held under SN 6108.

Main Topics:
The 2002-2012 NTS includes:
  • household variables: address type information, accessibility of public transport, access to amenities, household vehicle access, household composition and household socio-economic information;
  • individual information: age, gender and marital status, social and economic information, frequency of use of various methods of transport, driving licences and type of vehicle driven, employment, occupation and industry details, income, place of work and travel to work, season ticket details, travel difficulties;
  • vehicle information: vehicle type, registration details, parking, fuel type, mileage, engine capacity;
  • trips: day, date and time, main mode, purpose, origin and destination information;
  • stage: mode, number in party, distance, duration, costs;
  • long-distance trips (over 50 miles): stage: mode, purpose, origin and destination;
Please see the Table Structures document available in the table below for the full list of variables.

Coverage, universe, methodology

Dates of fieldwork: January 1995 - January 2001
Country: Great Britain
Spatial units: Local Authority Districts
Unitary Authorities (England)
Unitary Authorities (Wales)
Observation units: Families/households
Kind of data: Numeric data
Individual (micro) level
Universe: National
Households in Great Britain
Time dimensions: Repeated cross-sectional study
Sampling procedures: Multi-stage stratified random sample
Number of units: 3,631 households in 1995; 3,505 households in 1996; 3,461 households in 1997; 3,307 households in 1998; 3,362 households in 1999; 3,722 households in 2000; 3,768 households in 2001.
Method of data collection: Face-to-face interview; Diaries
Weighting: Weighting used. See documentation for details.

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Administrative and access information

Date of release:
First edition: 05 October 2015
Copyright: Crown copyright material is reproduced with the permission of the Controller of HMSO and the Queen's Printer for Scotland
Access conditions: The depositor has specified that registration is required and standard conditions of use apply. The depositor may be informed about usage.
Additional special conditions of use also apply. See terms and conditions for further information. In addition, the UK Data Service is required to request permission from the depositor prior to supplying the data.

Please note:
Since these data pose a higher risk of disclosure than data made available under the standard End User Licence they have additional special conditions attached to them that take the form of a Special Licence (SL). The SL requires the completion of an additional application form, agreement to the conditions of the SL, the signature(s) of the researcher(s), and the explicit permission of the data owners to release the data to the researcher(s). This is to ensure that the guarantee of confidentiality given to survey respondents is protected. SL applications are screened by the UK Data Archive and the data owners and data are only released to those researchers requiring data for statistical research purposes and who can justify their need for the SL data.

Researchers are required to keep the data under conditions of greater security than required under the standard End User Licence. The Microdata Handling and Security: Guide to Good Practice explains how to meet these conditions.
Please note: Special Licence and Secure Access NTS data are only available from 2002 onwards. The UK Data Archive holds End User Licence (EUL) NTS from 1972 onwards (see SN 5340).
Availability: UK Data Service
Contact: Get in touch


Title File Name Size (KB)
NTS Lookup Tables Banded Variables 7804_nts_lookup_tables_banded_variables_ukds.xls 2685
NTS Table Structures 7804_nts_table_structures_ukds.xls 819
NTS Notes and Definitions 2014 7804_notes_and_definitions_nts2014.pdf 375
NTS Technical Reports 1998-2001 7804_technical_reports_nts1998-2001.pdf 4131
UKDA Data Dictionary - All Special Licence data files 7804_ukda_data_dictionary.pdf 1453
NTS User Guide 2014 7804_user_guide_1995-2014.pdf 1709
Study information and citation UKDA_Study_7804_Information.htm 6
READ File read7804.htm 10
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By principal investigator(s):
Department for Transport (2005) Focus on personal travel, London: The Stationery Office.

Department for Transport (2006) Transport statistics bulletin: National Travel Survey 2005, London: The Stationery Office.

Department for Transport (2007) Transport statistics bulletin: National Travel Survey 2006, London: The Stationery Office.

Department for Transport (2008) Transport statistics bulletin: National Travel Survey 2007.

Department for Transport (2009) Transport statistics bulletin: National Travel Survey 2008.

Department for Transport (2010) National Travel Survey 2009.

Department for Transport (2011) National Travel Survey 2010.

Department for Transport (2012) National Travel Survey: 2011.

Department for Transport (2013) National Travel Survey: 2012.

Department for Transport (2014) National Travel Survey: England 2013.

Bulletins and other publications may be found on the National Travel Survey web pages.

Resulting from secondary analysis:
Jarvis, C., et al. (1996) Getting around after 60: a profile of Britain's older population, Age Concern Institute of Gerontology, King's College London: HMSO. ISBN 0-11-321966-0.

Stead, D. (1999) Planning for less travel - identifying land use characteristics associated with more sustainable travel patterns, unpublished PhD thesis, Bartlett School of Planning, University College London.

Fearnley, N. (1999) Distributional effects of public transport subsidies, unpublished dissertation for MA Transport Economics, Institute for Transport Studies, University of Leeds.

Mattioli, G. (2014) 'Where sustainable transport and social exclusion meet: households without cars and car dependence in Great Britain', Journal of Environmental Policy and Planning, online version doi: 10.1080/1523908x.2013.858592

Equality and Human Rights Commission (2013) Standard of Living, Measurement Framework Series Briefing Paper no.10, Manchester: Equality and Human Rights Commission. Retrieved February 26, 2014 from

Parry, E. L. and Redfern, M. A. (2011) 'Exploiting plug-in vehicles to enable better management of electricity demands and generation', paper prepared for delivery at the 46th International Universities' Power Engineering Conference (UPEC), 5-7 July 2011, Soest, Germany.

Parry, E. L. and Redfern, M. A. (2011) 'Plug-in vehicles for Smart Grids: what can and cannot be done with existing technology', paper prepared for delivery at 2nd IEEE Power and Energy Society (PES) International Conference and Exhibition on Innovative Smart Grid Technologies (ISGT Europe), 5-7 December 2011, Manchester, England.

Parry, E.L. and Redfern, M.A. (2012) 'The construction of weekly recharging regimes for plug-in vehicles', in Proceedings of the Universities Power Engineering Conference, IEEE.

Parry, E. (2014) Electricity load estimation and management for plug-in vehicle recharging on a national scale prior to the development of third party monitoring and control mechanisms, Ph.D. thesis, University of Bath. Retrieved August 4, 2014 from

Carra, G., Mulalic, I., Fosgerau, M. and Barthelemy, M. (2016) 'Modelling the relation between income and commuting distance', Journal of the Royal Society: Interface. doi:10.1098/rsif.2016.0306


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