COVID-19 only had a minor influence on mobility between February and May 2020, according to Google’s COVID-19 Community Mobility reports.
Using Google location history data, the reports analysed percentage changes in movement to six destinations including residences/neighbourhoods, public transport stations, retail shops and pharmacies.
Since the Korean government did not enforce any lockdowns, Koreans continued travelling to destinations associated with work, grocery stores and pharmacies at the same rate between February and May. Travel to parks increased by 160% at the end of April compared to January 2020.
In contrast to Korea, Italy’s report shows a 50%-80% decline in the number of trips to the same destinations as the country was experiencing a strict lockdown.
However, the number of Korean subway passengers and trips to non-essential shops did decrease between February and April. For example, there was an average of 2.9 million subway users per day in March 2020, almost half the average daily users recorded in March 2019.
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