Travel Counsellors is an independent travel company in Manchester specialising in personally tailored holidays and business travel. The idea is that you don't need to do anything, your Travel Counsellor handles everything for you, helping you with destination ideas, booking flights, hotels, transfers and then even excursions, tours and events. Sounds good to me!
The client wanted to create an app across iOS and Android that allows the Travel Counsellor to deliver all the personalised information and documentation needed to a travelling customer.
Start at the end
Ultimately we knew that we were designing an itinerary. The itinerary would be made up of different events. These events would be strung together to create a day, the days would be strung together to create a journey.
It was decided early on that each event would be represented by a card, these cards at the minimum had an icon, event context, event title, action and time. After that bolt-ons for things like booking references, documentation and Travel Counsellor notes enabled event cards to represent bigger events.
Scan by event or time
What we were left with was an event card template suitable for any event in any type of journey. The cards 'action' and 'time' were positioned in the top right corner for easy scanning of the 'action times' whilst on the move whilst the rest of the card could be read into or scanned on the left for event types.
Work my way up and out
Once we had nailed each itinerary event card with the client, we then knew we could then use them in any combination to create any itinerary. After that it was about levelling up and housing each of these itineraries into journeys organised by date and filtered by personal or business. We prototyped it all using Marvel and documenting using inDesign.
One customer, two mindsets
The app had to deal with Travel Customers in two very different mindsets. The first mindset would be in the days before the journey, relaxed, looking forward to a trip, looking ahead to see what they planning to do, getting in touch with their Travel Counsellor to discuss ideas to add etc. Then the other mindset would be on the day of the journey, on the move, need information, quick glances, accessing documents, functional.
We made sure it behaved differently on the day of the journey, when the user opened the app it would automatically land them on the itinerary for that day. For the look and feel we considered both mindsets.
Design for functionality
At the itinerary level the look and feel was very much functional. The more low profile colours from the brand pallet were used, such as the brand raspberry as a call to action colour. A full suite of icons for each event type was produced.
Design for emotion
As I designed away from the functionally heavy itinerary and into the destinations and login areas the more I moved the look and feel away from the functional and more into the emotional with large photography until at the login areas we were at full screen imagery.