This article describes a series of small-scale investigations conducted with older people to understand the importance of independent transport to their daily lives and the key barriers that they face which constrain their travel patterns. The investigations used a blend of methods including literature review, focus groups, accompanied walks, geographical information system (GIS) mapping and interviews with older people and experts working in the field of transport planning. The findings were tested through a series of practitioner and user workshops. While other studies have also provided valuable evidence on the importance of transport to well-being the article presents evidence as to important cultural aspects of the predominant approach to transport planning which lead to older people's needs not receiving the attention that they need or deserve. There is a lack of training of professionals in the specific needs of this group compounded by a lack of time devoted to understanding these. Efforts to automate the identification of problem areas using GIS mapping do not match well to the problems expressed by older people. This leads us to conclude that a more community-based, user-led approach is most likely to deliver the inclusive transport system that transport planners say they wish to develop and that older people would like to travel on.