Transportation deficiencies for older adults in Seoul, South Korea

Joon Ki Kim, Gudmundur F. Ulfarsson, Keemin Sohn*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


South Korea expects a nearly tenfold increase between 2000 and 2018 in its share of adults older than 65 years of age. This population is likely to experience deficiencies in its transportation options as its physical abilities deteriorate, which will necessitate new policies to provide mobility for older adults. This study investigated deficiencies in transportation for a representative sample of 812 individuals, 65 years or older, surveyed in 2011 in Seoul, South Korea. The survey contained 160 questions about individual, household, transportation, and built environment characteristics. The respondents that occasionally or frequently could not engage in desired out-of-home activities because of a lack of transportation options were defined as transportation deficient, compared with those that indicated that they never or rarely lacked transportation. The probability of transportation deficiency decreased for older adults who knew how reach destinations on public transportation, lived within walking distance of the subway, lived in the neighborhood for more than 20 years, and lived within walking distance of places where they could meet other older adults. The probability of transportation deficiency increased for people who were 75 or older, had a physical disability, were male and had given up driving, had a low income, lived with children, and lived in areas with difficult conditions for pedestrians. The policy recommendations highlighted an improved pedestrian environment to facilitate walking, public transit improvements, and information systems that would make bus transit in particular a more viable option for older adults. Policies were needed to take into account the varied health and physical abilities of older adults.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationTransportation Research Record
PublisherUS National Research Council
Number of pages13
ISBN (Electronic)9780309295642
Publication statusPublished - 2014

Publication series

NameTransportation Research Record
ISSN (Print)0361-1981


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