Introduction

Designing a better
offline travel experience.

APP CONCEPT

Wanderer.

The offline Off-the-Grid companion. 

Travelers to all cities and countries don’t need to fear
extortionate roaming plans and sluggish hostel wifi networks ruining their travel plans.

STARTING LINE

UX DESIGN
CASE STUDY

Wanderer is an in-depth and ground-up User Experience Case Study for an offline Travel App. Set with the goal of solving common problems in the travel industry, Wanderer takes the issue of viewing your travel plans while abroad and offline from the initial problem refinement stage through to a high-fidelity prototype.

A Personal Project

MY ROLE

This was a personal passion project I took on. As a team of one, I was able to dive deep on the areas I felt had the greatest need.

Read on for a full review of the Wanderer Case Study & Design Process.

 
 
 
 
 
Wanderer Mockup.png

The Challenge

Accessing your travel plans
while offline.

Traveling to remote places is exciting.
And while planning adventures to far-off places is fun, it can be frustrating not having access to your plans once you’re off your phone carrier’s network. Keep your preparation in your pocket
no matter where you are.

The Problem

All your planning is gone the moment the plane takes off and you lose signal.

Many apps and sites exist to allow for fun and in-depth planning. However, they all require an internet connection, and often a strong one at that.

The Solution

A New Type of App

Store all your maps, bookmarks, plane tickets, and more in one convenient, data-friendly place while online. Then access your plans later anytime, anywhere. No internet connection required.

The Process

1. Discover 2. Define 3. Develop 4.Deliver

 

 1. Discover

 

Interviews

I spent all this time making sure I had packed all my technology…I was basically carrying around a metal brick.

I interviewed regular travelers to hone in on key problem areas and how people were currently solving them. I got a great story from someone I interviewed who walked me through his careful planning and packing routine only to end up carrying around what he called a metal brick.

Affinity Mapping

Everyone that travels at some point experiences having the first thing they packed become unusable.

Ask anyone and they’ll tell you the first thing they pack for a trip is their phone. Ask them something they’ve forgotten and they’ll all answer that at some point they forgot to pack their charger.

This was a very universal experience that set the tone for my project…

 

2. Define 

 

 User Personas

Crafting a Human-Centered Design

Jazz is in her mid-20s, tries to travel outside the U.S. at least once a year, and meticulously plans every minute of her trip.

However, all that planning becomes useless when her phone doesn’t have a signal.

Jazz needs a way to access her travel plans while offline, because she has limited internet connection while traveling.

 Problem Statement Refinement

Making It Personal

With the goal of keeping a user-centric model in mind, it was time to refine our initial problem statement.

 3. Develop

Competitive Analyses

Existing Solutions

Early in the planning stage, I started comparing some of the other travel apps out there. Maps.me is great at its offline functionality. Especially, as the name implies, its maps.

Yahoo’s short-lived Radar app had a lot of really impressive features, but was seemingly discontinued shortly after launch due to its buggy interface and hamfisted AI Chat-bot Integration.

Syncing your planning stage with your maps is still untapped.

Surprisingly, after all the interviews,
I found the biggest competitor of all was...

Screenshots

The Biggest Competitor

Wanderer Case Study - Portfolio (1).png

SCREENSHOTS

Despite all these apps, most people use a pretty simple hack.

And why not? They’re quick, easy, and don’t require an internet connection. However, they’re also a major pain to try and keep organized, and there’s no way you’ll get the map, hours, and other important info all in one screen.

So Why Wanderer?

What’s the Trade-off?

Well, in addition to seeing all that information in one convenient place, downloading all this data will actually SAVE you room on your phone leaving more room for pictures.

Less Screenshots.
More Selfies.

 
 
 
 
Wanderer Case Study - Portfolio (2).png

User Flow

Creating an Ideal Path for User Success

So I set to designing a rudimentary user flow that would gather all the information necessary from the user to download a MINIMAL amount of data while still being easy to jump quickly in and out of.

Wanderer Case Study - Portfolio (4).png

Paper Prototype & Usability Testing

Uncovering Early Issues

From the earliest sketches I prototyped, I wanted to really dial in on features that testers enjoyed while buffing out anything that hindered their progression through the app. 

Progressing from Low Fidelity to High Fidelity Wireframes:
Highlighting User Favorites

“Make It Bigger.”

One that surprised me was how consistently users vocally appreciated the bubble that confirmed how much storage would be remaining on their phone after they download their trip.

Progressing from Low Fidelity to High Fidelity Wireframes:
Card Sorting, User Interviews, & Usability Testing

Listening: Gathering New Data

As I moved from a paper prototype to a low fidelity wireframe and finally up to higher fidelity,…

Progressing from Low Fidelity to High Fidelity Wireframes:
Usability Testing & User Feedback

Listening: Finding Problem Areas

…I made sure to keep every change focused on the data I was gathering.

Progressing from Low Fidelity to High Fidelity Wireframes:
Usability Testing & User Feedback

Constantly Improving the Ideal Path

I had to keep the original goal of an easy, streamlined experience for all travelers in mind every time I made an adjustment to my User Flow. Understanding how these changes were helping people get from Point A to Point B was key.
Jazz still needs a way to access her plans offline.

4. Deliver 

High Fidelity Prototype

Fully Navigable & High Fidelity

Putting it all together, Wanderer now exists as a High-Fidelity Prototype. Through constant testing and improvement, Wanderer’s key features are better than ever. Jazz can now get off the grid without having to stress actually getting off the grid.

The Journey
Ahead

The Next Steps for Wanderer

Wanderer Case Study - Portfolio (2).png

Off the Path

Internal Navigation.

Full Implementation of a navigation bar once the user has completed setting up the app. After wireframing, user testing.

Passport

Traveler Profile.

Building out from the data gathered in the “Happy Path,” a user is 90% of the way to having a full Traveler Profile ready in the app.


New Threads

Visual Overhaul.

Once higher fidelity wireframing is approved past the testing stage, more effort can be put into the look of the app.

Wanderer Case Study - Portfolio (1).png

 Thanks & Safe Travels!

Wanderer Case Study - Portfolio (2).png