Information for survey participants

Your participation in VISTA is greatly appreciated.

We need information from as many different households as possible to better understand the complexity of travel. We need to hear from you, whether you make a lot of trips or hardly travel at all.

Effective transport planning is a critical part of managing our cities and towns. Your completed survey, and other surveys from households in your area, helps us understand how, when and where people travel.

Survey participants can be assured:

  • all information collected is confidential
  • survey results are grouped together to give an overview of travel across a region
  • personal information is deleted before data is used for transport planning
  • your name, address and contact information is not kept unless you agree to take part in other transport-related research projects.

If you have any difficulties or concerns filling in the survey, or would like to speak to the survey team about other ways of providing the information, please call 1800 816 337 (free call).

VISTA survey forms

Copies of the VISTA questionnaire, and other materials provided to participating households, can be downloaded below.

The household form is normally provided in printed A3 format. A travel diary booklet is provided for every person in the household. Additional booklets are available on request.

Frequently asked questions for households

Who is conducting the survey?

The survey is being conducted for the department by the Travel Survey Team from Ipsos Social Research Institute.

What is the survey about?

The purpose of this survey is to collect essential information on the day-to-day travel and activities of people living in various parts of Victoria (metropolitan Melbourne, Geelong, plus a number of regional areas); how, where, why and when people travel.

The survey results will provide a reliable picture of travel patterns occurring in different areas – information that will be used to make planning decisions about roads, public transport and other facilities in and around your local community.

How is the survey conducted?

We ask you to first complete some questions about your household and yourselves. We then ask you to provide information about your travel and activities on a specific 'Travel Day'. This day will be printed on your survey forms.

Why do you ask about the people in the household?

We know that different people travel in different ways. To get a good picture of the travel by people in your area, the survey needs to get answers from all types of people and households.

This is why, in addition to asking about your travel, we also ask questions about your age, gender, occupation and income to make sure we have included all types of people. These answers are then combined with those from all other households in the survey to give a complete picture of the day-to-day travel and activities of all people in the community.

The results from our survey will also be compared with the results from the 2011 Census to ensure that our survey respondents are representative of the broader population.

What if I drive for a living?

We realise that it would be very difficult for 'professional drivers' (those employed to move goods or people) to write down all the travel they make over a whole day and we don't expect them to do so.

Instead, we ask that they record only their personal travel – including trips from home to work and back again. However, if you are not a 'professional driver', but sometimes travel as part of your work (e.g. to go to a meeting) then we ask that you record all travel you do as part of your work.

What about privacy?

The VISTA team respects the privacy of individuals. All information obtained through the survey will be treated in the strictest confidence, and only analysed in combination with many other households from your municipality and the wider study area.

No data that allows identification of survey participants will be released. Furthermore, no address or contact information from this project will be stored by the department, unless you have explicitly agreed to participate in other transport related research.

How was I selected?

No individual person has been selected for the survey. Instead, a random sample of households has been selected from up-to-date listings of street addresses in your area. So, you (personally) were not selected – your address was.

But I don't travel very much!

We are interested in understanding the travel behaviour of everyone selected to take part in the survey. While some people will make a lot of trips, it is just as important for us to know about those who don't travel much, or at all.

The survey is interested in all types of transport – cars, buses, trains, trams, planes, trucks, motorbikes, bicycles and walking.

So, on your Travel Day, it does not matter whether:

  • you do not go anywhere at all
  • you only leave the house once or twice, or
  • you make lots of trips.

Please record what actually happened on your Travel Day, even if this is different to your normal daily routine.

What will happen next?

On the coming weekend, a representative of the VISTA team will deliver survey forms to your door. This will also give you the opportunity to ask any questions you may have about the survey.

Then, on the following weekend, we will return to collect your completed forms. Even if you don't travel on your Travel Day or are away for the day, it is still important that you complete the forms. This ensures that all members of the community are represented.

In this way, everyone's travel needs are considered when decisions are made about transport investment and operations.

What if I have other questions?

If you have any questions or problems with the survey, please do not hesitate to contact the VISTA team on 1800 816 337 (free-call).

Page last reviewed on 2 March 2016

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