Travel was the first theme for the design course, and surprisingly it was a theme that I actually had decent ideas to contribute towards. As a “photography enthusiast”, I recently got back from trips from Japan, Hong Kong and San Francisco, so all these experiences contributed to trying solve this design problem.
To better understand my users, I managed to ask two people who would help me answer my interview questions after bribing them with some that sweet, sweet 7Leaves Thai tea (but not really, just an small appreciation for their time). Honestly, if I had actually do this guerrilla research in a real life environment, I would probably sit around at a boba shop and interview random people for better answers, but this will have to do work this exercise.
The goal of this project was to develop an idea for an application that focuses on collaboration with others and planning aspect of the travel experience. The two people I interviewed were chosen because they had previously traveled this past year and have strong resemblance to my proto-persona (the users who would use my application). After some time, I came up with a problem that I wanted to solve…
Problem Statement: Coordinating travel plans with conflicting personalities can be troublesome and plans can be more flexible with improved visuals and local suggestions. We have observed that Google Docs and TripAdvisor is not meeting these travel itinerary goals. How might we improve on this is creating a process that allows travel users to collaborate in real time with visual suggestions to create an enjoyable yet flexible itinerary.
Insight: The people that I interviewed said if they could travel alone, they would. Why? I thought it was because others were holding them back on their own goals and what they actually wanted to do.
Therefore: The collaboration process can be streamlined.
Concept: Focus on the collaboration process and compromise with others.
Execution: This will be similar to a draggable mood board but also can be refined so that individuals or the users can be flexible with their ideas. Also, a second bar in with option B’s in case that can drag onto the schedule if the first plan did not work out while they are traveling. Included would be time suggestions for landmarks and destinations to visit to build a flexible schedule.
Benefit: The reason I want to execute the project is because it’s exhausting to try to collaborate “hey what do you want to do now?” with friends and family. There should be travel specialized alternative to Google Sheets and just pasting links and liked pictures to friends.
Message: “Organize all your travel destinations on this platform.”
Objective: I wish to accomplish a design that focuses on the planning itinerary aspect that allows an individual to collaborate with others while traveling and quick alternatives nearby the user while they are traveling.
Compiling all this information that I’ve gathered, I added qualities to a proto persona who would be the ideal user of this application down below. Check it out.
The next section was to develop a storyboard for my persona who would be using this application. I should invest some time in drawing better stick figures. Honestly, I didn’t know drawing the Hong Kong flag was that difficult, seriously. The stories creates are pretty much how the user would be in a situation in which the application would assist them out in the wild.
This section was to be determined…
Some applications that I drew my inspiration from was Google Docs…
In this part I created a simple flow for a minimum viable product (mvp).
Phone Log In -> Add Trip Name -> Add Event -> Add Images -> Add Notes -> Add Time/Date -> Share -> Done!
This user flow is the most simple use of the travel application. My main focus of this application was something that allows not only the user to visually plan out their trips, but also allows others view it as well, and suggesting inputs and working together on an itinerary. Additional features that would be included are options to add shared users, group chat, etc etc.
I was able to sketch out what UI design of the application would look like. I drew inspiration from Google’s Material Design and Docs applications. Some other inspirations were Hopper, a ticket price tracker application that I came across.
From these sketches, I created a mockup of what the screens would seem like. I haven’t added final images yet, so this is somewhat in between a lo-fi and mid-fi prototype.
Afterwards, I digitized them using Adobe XD… Some thoughts about the UI design choices are listed to the right as well.
Phone Verification Login
I chose a different approach to the traditional user/password login because remembering passwords is too cumbersome. I had this idea after looking at another travel app (Hopper) that used this same verification as well. I believe this is a good option because it is secure, yet also allows the user to avoid the hassle. Also, Google connect is there well in case and also Google is connected to almost everything nowadays
The user selects from a list of saved trips that they have created. I’ve added a floating action button as well in the corner. The menu selection has three choices: trips / explore / and notifications.
After the user adds an event, it appears on this main screen here. In my mind, I was planning something you could drag around blocks that flex around the time schedule. The blocks would be added by the FAB on the bottom right hand corner.
A simple screen to add images and event names and notes of the user event entry. Notes could be added for the user to remind them of places to stop by or events that they want to do.
Communication and comments are key to having a great experience, so I added a quick chat section to add in between group members.
Simple screen to add people to join your itinerary. I’m experimenting with this minimalist style of UI.
Simple notification screen. Separated into categories for easier viewing.
In future iterations, I would like to practice my interaction UI design skills using Adobe After Effects. At this point in time, I’m able to slide and move stuff around, but in the future, I’d like to learn how to demonstrate the visuals that Material Design is especially known for, especially the microinteractions.
I should probably think of a name. I was thinking of Wander, and maybe something about cats. I have no clue at this point. Thinking of names is difficult, really. Any suggestions? 😀
The user research data that I would like to improve upon is specifically more analytical data, such as numbers, percentages, and user frequency. I do a have a few results from sending out a Google Form within the class, but I would like to refine those questions in order to validate the results that I’m looking for.
So yeah, thank you for reading my drawn out thought process on this first project of mine and hopefully I can update this more in the future.