Transport Planner

Transport Planner Jobs – Young Jobseeker Info

Transport planner Jobs … did you know?

If you’ve ever walked down a street or road and wondered how they decide where to put the train station or the bus stops, you could make a great transport planner.

Transport planners are needed to make sure a transport system is safe, environmentally friendly, economically sound and reliable. Transport is a really important part of social living. You’ll have an incredibly varied job looking at the big picture and the little details, from thinking about how to avoid long traffic jams at rush hour to studying how airports affect their environment.

You can work for private companies or the government and local authorities, and as there is a skills shortage in transport planning your skills could help you get places fast.

Industry: Transport and Logistics

Transport planner job trends

How much money can you make as a transport planner?

£22,000 – £50,000 (UK average)

Labour market information for 2017 says you can earn on average between £22,000 and £50,000 a year as a transport planner in the UK, with starter wages ranging from £22,000 to £25,000.

Your starting salary can vary because of factors like level of experience, training, or location. Your salary as a transport planner will increase over time as you build skills, knowledge and experience.

What entry qualifications and training do you need for this job?

School, College and Training

Transport planning is a career you normally enter after studying to degree level or the equivalent, but there are increasingly ways to enter this career if you haven’t been to university.

Taking the university route?

The following subjects are useful to study at degree level, before going on to do a master’s qualification in transport planning:

  • Civil engineering
  • Economics
  • Environmental science
  • Geography
  • Business studies or social sciences

The variety of subjects shows just how many different ideas and skills go into like transport planning. You could be thinking about money, if the area is flat or at risk of flooding, or if wildlife would be placed under threat with changes to a travel route. Your job might involve considering how a change to a transport system might affect people’s homes, work, life and play.


You can get into this job through completing a transport planning apprenticeship – these were first launched in October 2016 and will give you the opportunity to earn a salary working in transport planning while getting structured learning that leads to an industry-recognised qualification.

A transport planning advanced apprenticeship might need you to have five GCSES (9-4/A*-C) and A-levels or the equivalent to apply.

Want to become a transport planner after you leave school?

Apart from finding an apprenticeship, another route in is to start work in a transport planning department and work towards vocational qualifications once you’re there. Useful qualifications include Civil Engineering, Transport Engineering or Transport Planning qualifications at levels 3-5.

Relevant HNDs and HNCs are also available, like the Construction and Built Environment Diploma.

Career progression and further qualifications

With time and experience you could become a senior transport planner or traffic engineer.

Your skills and experience will also give you the chance to move into similar areas of work like town planning, policy development, or working as a freelance consultant.

What experience do you need for transport planning jobs?

Work experience

It can help your application if you have previously done work experience or volunteering in an office-based environment.

Office admin work experience where you have carried out activities like answering phone queries,
managing the office diary to keep track of meetings and events, and processing expenses like petty cash, could be very useful too. They will show you have organisation skills that will be useful when it comes to transport planning.

Examples of relevant work experience include:

  • Work shadowing (even if it’s just for a day
  • Work placements in a company
  • Year-long industry placements on a sandwich degree course

What skills do you need for transport planning jobs?

Useful skills to highlight to your employer when applying for transport planning jobs include:

  • Fantastic negotiation and communication skills (for example, town councillors or local groups might have different views on the benefits of a transport system change, and you will need to communicate with people from all walks of life, from clients to the public)
  • Written communication skills for writing reports and creating presentations
  • Self-management skills for planning your time well, not forgetting any important tiny details and sometimes project management if you are in a senior position
  • Self-belief skills that will help you find flexible and creative approaches to problem solving
  • A logical approach to looking over plans and proposals, making logical recommendations, and making sure the plans are carried out
  • Good teamworking skills – you may be working as part of a team, and with time and experience you may be managing a team to oversee a project.

Vocational qualifications and work experience will help you build these skills over time.

What does a transport planner do?

You’ll be seeing how transport issues have an impact on the public. A transport issue could be anything from needing to increase road safety outside a school to looking at ways to reduce traffic jams at rush hour.

Some day-to-day job responsibilities include:

  • Using computer models to simulate transport issues and work out possible solutions
  • Looking at research from transport studies to understand what it shows and how that information could be used to improve things
  • Looking at traffic management schemes (like parking or congestion charging
  • Writing reports and presentations
  • Acting as an ambassador to encourage people to use environmentally-friend travel options like public transport, walking and cycling.

Your first steps into transport planning jobs

Transport planner jobs are advertised under different job titles. When you’re looking on job boards, look for the following types of job:

  • Transport planning apprenticeship
  • Transport planning technician apprenticeship
  • Transport planning assistant
  • Trainee transport planner

Useful organisations and links for transport, logistics and supply chain careers

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