SUMMARY AND CHALLENGE
As a short exploratory project I created a full service app for travelers, either while planning or currently visiting a specific location. I wanted to provide users with information and recommendations that cater to their individual needs while keeping important details organized (hotels, flights ect.)
I started by looking at what other apps feature, specifically what information is most important and how is it all organized. I was also looking at the interface layout, with so much information to provide how can you show it without making it overwhelming and cluttered?
Tripit allows you to forward booked confirmation emails and automatically creates your itinerary. Airbnb has a nice clean interface with emphasis on one function; booking a place to stay. Roadtrippers relies on GPS and allows you to create your own trip while giving you fun attractions along the way.
I read through six interview transcripts while pulling important concerns and behaviors from a variety of travelers. Here I was able to find common themes such as:
- Always needing suggestions in the area
- GPS location was key for navigation
- Saving or making note of places to check out
- Being able to plan ahead (booking reservations ect.)
With these insights I was able to create two personas. Both were frequent travelers but had different reasons for traveling. Josh was a business traveler and Sarah traveled for leisure, however they both had the same approach to traveling. They needed to know where they were located at all times, how to get around and what was next on their itinerary.
Sketches & prototyping
I moved forward with some really quick sketches to work through a possible flow or solution, main objective was getting ideas on paper.
After quickly creating a base I began thinking of a scenario in which Josh or Sarah would use this app. I created a sitemap flow to help guide my design. My flow takes the user from login to booking a hotel.
From here I worked more closely on details through paper prototyping.I created a complete user flow which consisted of searching for a hotel through the booking process. I used these screens to create a functioning paper prototype that would ideally be used for concept testing.
I used my paper prototype and sketches and created wireframes using Axure to build a functioning product. This was to help see and understand the flow on a more detailed level giving me an opportunity to iterate before beginning the UI design.
UI and Branding
I began thinking about LocalGuide and how I wanted the user to feel while traveling newly discovered lands. Starting with a brainstorming session I wrote down words, and things that came to mind when I thought of the word: TRAVEL. This led me to begin sketching some very quick ideas for a logo exploration.
My focus geared towards the thought of being on an adventure, having the freedom to go and do as you please. I wanted to evoke the feeling that you could travel within the city or be with nature and thanks to LocalGuide anything is possible. Using Illustrator I began giving character and life to my sketches, a colorful more centered exploration. My approach was to show the idea of being on an adventure having limited possibilities and feeling as though LocalGuide does the work for you.
I spent some time discussing with other UX and UI designers my logo soloutions and came to the final decision to move forward with this one. It embodied the idea of traveling through the city but not limiting yourself and supporting adventurous travels as well. I chose the color purple because it carries cam, stable, powerful and ambitious characteristics. It can also stand for wisdom, independence and peace. I chose Abolition for the text, its bold, strong and grabs your attention.
Completing this project as an introduction to UX and UI taught me the fundamental skills of the entire process. I was able to take what I learned during this project and build on those skills moving forward. I think the most important thing I learned was how much I have grown as a designer since completing this mock project.