Austrians top European league table for public transport use

Aaron Burnett
Aaron Burnett - [email protected]
Austrians top European league table for public transport use
A tram in Vienna. Austrians ride the tram, metro and train more than almost all other Europeans. Photo by Jiamin Huang on Unsplash

The average Austrian resident rides the train, metro, and tram about twice as much as the EU average.


The average resident of Austria rides uses public rail transport to travel 1,625 kilometres every single year, according to an analysis by The Austrian Transport Club (VCÖ) using European Commission data.

People in Austria come well ahead of second-placed France and third-places Czechia (Czech Republic) – where residents travel about 1,280 kilometers and 985 kilometers on public rail transport annually.

Public rail transport use is among Austrian residents is also almost double what it is in neighbouring Germany, where the average resident travels 825 kilometres on public rail every year.

Austria is also well ahead of last-placed Lithuania, with only 100 kilometres annually or Malta and Cyprus, which don’t have rail transport at all.

Public transport use is higher in all these countries that just the kilometres listed – as bus or ferry travel isn’t counted in the total.


VCÖ says despite the impressive numbers, Austrians shouldn’t get too comfortable. The association is calling for more government money to be invested in rail projects to meet Austria’s climate goals, including more trams to reduce traffic congestion and more regional connections.

“Due to increasingly flexible working hours and increased part-time work, more frequent connections are also needed outside of classic commute times,” VCÖ expert Michael Schwendinger told Kronen Zeitung newspaper. “In addition, optimal coordination between regional buses and trains is important for passengers.”

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What are your views on public transport in Austria. Does it offer the best service in Europe?

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