what impact on our travels?

Is the “Location History” option enabled on your Google Account? So you’re one of the users who let Google produce the reports that help the Scientific Council to evaluate the effectiveness of the travel restriction measures.

Facebook, mobile phone operators and those in the transport sector (SNCF, public transport networks, Waze, motorway companies, etc.) also provide their information.

Inclusion, curfew, store opening … what impact does it have on our movements?

October 30: re-entry, less restrictive than in March, after a period of curfew in major metropolises. November 28: reopening of so-called “non-essential” stores for the holidays. December 15: return to curfew … These subsequent restrictive measures have changed our movements. Discover their development over time, by place category and during the first week of the Christmas holidays.

Warning! The very atypical deviations that are registered on certain days correspond to public holidays: 1, 8 May and 13 April for the first containment, 11 November, 25 December, 1 January for the second.

Retail and leisure businesses: -25% compared to the benchmark index

After a low level of -75% in November, the reopening of so-called “non-essential” stores on 28 November for purchases at the turn of the year reduced the gap with a “normal” period for our trips to places dedicated to retail and leisure.

But despite this holiday season, at -25% on December 29, they still show the effect of closed doors for cafes, restaurants and cultural venues, closed since October 27 (and sometimes even earlier in metropolitan areas). under curfew).

Cinemas, museums and theaters, performance halls, as well as the hotel and catering industry, are hardly hoping for any clarification before February.

Food and pharmacy: + 16% compared to the reference

Travel to so-called “essential” shops, which were open, was little affected during the months, and with purchases related to holiday meals, they were up to 29 December 16% above the reference values ​​for a Tuesday.

Parks and gardens: + 20% compared to the reference

As of December 29, the number of visitors to this category of sites was 20% higher than the median value calculated before the restrictions. But the frequency of parks and gardens (or even beaches, forests, viewpoints, campsites, etc.) is closely linked to weather conditions and school holiday periods.

Public transport stops: -37% compared to the reference

Metro station, port, taxi rank, motorway area, car rental company … the number of visitors to this type of place is increasing very slowly and is still, December 29, 37% below the reference value.

Jobs: -62% compared to the reference

During confinement, our trips to certain types of places were about 25% lower than the reference period, especially due to the use of teleworking, and slowly returning to normal values. But on December 29, the school holidays commit, they moved even further.

Housing: + 18% compared to the benchmark index

The residence category indicates a variation in terms of duration (and not in terms of the number of visitors for the other categories). “Since people already spend a large part of their day at the place of residence (even working days), the capacity for change is not so important,” says Google. On December 29, we spent 18% more time at our place of residence compared to a “normal” Tuesday, but the weather and the holidays undoubtedly played a role …

How is this data collected?

These curves are developed using Google’s user placement history, which compares site attendance to a median (1), before widespread disruption due to users’ response to COVID-19. This explains why, for example, for workplaces the curve goes up on Sunday: there are normally already few people, so the difference is “less negative” (therefore goes less low) than other days. And vice versa for residential areas: the difference with the usual values ​​is less important on Sunday (this day we stay as much at home as before), which explains why the curve is less high.

Am I located?

The “Position History” option for a Google Account is what enables the operator in normal times to provide Internet user information that takes into account his regular journeys (the forecast for travel time home-work for example). Disabled by default when you create the account, it can also be disabled later (or the history deleted) at any time by going to the account settings. Google specifies that the data used for these reports is anonymized and aggregated, that is, it does not allow targeting of a particular person.

(1) In this case what was observed in the period 3 January to 6 February 2020.
To be sure to interpret the data correctly: go here.
To access the original reports: go here.