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AirLuggage

Passengers' assistant app to manage the status of their luggage while traveling to the final destination airport.

The app allows users to find the status of their luggage, the location of the baggage claim area, and connect to airport customer service if there were any problems with their luggage.

See prototype

AirLuggage_iPhone 14 Pro on a Plane Mockup (Mockuuups Studio).png

Background

In our days, smartphone usage is widespread, and when people travel they usually find information via mobile apps. It inspired me to build a mobile app that will help to manage luggage status after passengers arrive at the final destination airport. Also, the app will be able to provide information about the baggage claim area where passengers can take their luggage and help to contact airline customer service if there will be any problems with information about luggage.

Technology

Mobile app

My Role

UX/UI Designer

Tools

Figma, FigJam, Google Form, Miro, Zoom

Duration

October 2022 - February 2023

UX Process

5 stages Design Thinking approach in Agile: Epathy, Define, Ideate, Prototype, Test

Problem Space

The problem space is frustration in Air Baggage Management.


Losing luggage while traveling by plane can be a significant source of stress for many people. The experience of waiting at the baggage claim carousel, only to find that one's luggage has not arrived, can be frustrating and anxiety-inducing. The loss of luggage can be particularly distressing if it contains important items, such as medication or work-related materials. After reporting the missing luggage to airport staff, travelers must often endure a waiting period before they can retrieve their belongings, which can further exacerbate their stress levels. During this time, they may have to navigate unfamiliar surroundings without access to their personal items. Once the luggage is located, the process of retrieving it can be time-consuming and inconvenient. Overall, the stress related to losing luggage and attempting to find it after landing can make what should be an enjoyable travel experience into a frustrating and anxiety-inducing ordeal.

Empathy Phase

As a UX/UI designer, I used a variety of research methods on the empathy stage of the design thinking process for gaining a deeper understanding of the problem I started to solve. 

UX Research

The goal of the research was to understand everything you can about frustration in luggage management in airplane transportation: who, when, what, where, how, and how to behave when passengers are frustrated. I used different research methods to reach my goal such as secondary research, primary research (screener survey, interviewing people), and competitive analysis.

Secondary Research

While conducting secondary research I explored existing data that relates to my product idea.
Here are highlights of the way passengers usually find information about their luggage at the final destination airport:

  • at the baggage belt column on the arrivals screen;

  • by asking one of the airline’s agents at the airport;

  • from flight attendants' announcements after the airplane landing at the final destination airport;

  • and sometimes from notifications of the airline mobile app.

Primary Research

Screener Survey

I used a screener survey as a tool to make sure that I was conducting research with the right participants. 
Here are examples of my questions that were included in the screener survey:

  • When did you take your last trip, domestic or international, by airplane? 

  • How do you prefer to check in for your flight?

  • How many pieces of baggage do you usually carry?

  • What problems do you face while checking your baggage?

  • How do you know where to pick up your baggage on landing?

  • Have you had any problems with getting your baggage on arrival?

I found that 70% of screener survey participants had problems with getting their luggage upon arrival:

Chart 1.png

Unmoderated Interview

I conducted interviews after sending out the screener survey and choosing 5 participants based on their ability to provide information and insight about the problem space.

Before interviewing people I created an interview guide and wrote down interview questions that were used during my interviewing process.

I selected insightful quotes after I interviewed people and here are some examples:

"We did not know that our luggage did not make it until the belt on baggage claim stopped running."

Donna

"We were the only people left and there were no our bags. We had questions: where are our bags?"

David

"I heard an announcement in the plane what carousel my bags could be at. It was helpful info I knew where to go before leaving the plane."

Tina

"I feel pretty good about the airline app because it tells when my bags are loaded onto the airplane."

Brian

"I absolutely did not have an answer to my question of 'where my baggage is?'"

Julia

The main highlight of primary research is that around 80% of primary research participants faced the same problem - frustration when they needed to find information about their luggage upon arrival at the final destination airport.

Competitive Analysis

During competitive analysis, I compared three airline companies: Delta, Southwest, and Hawaiian Airlines, and their software product features related to my problem space in air luggage management.

Here is a picture of the comparison table:

Airluggage Competitive Analysis.png

In the process of analyzing competitors, I found that Delta, SouthWest, and Hawaiian Airlines have similar features such as checking your bags while you check in at your flight, printing bag tags at the self-check-in kiosk, tracking flight status, and contacting customer service. Delta and Hawaiian Airlines started to provide information about baggage carousel numbers in their new versions of mobile apps. Any airline does not have the option to notify passengers about luggage issues. However, Delta app offers some info about luggage status.

Define Phase

To create a successful solution to a problem, it needs clearly define what that problem is. The problem is that passengers often feel frustrated when they need to find information about a baggage claim number to get their luggage at the final destination airport.

Affinity Mapping

By conducting an affinity mapping I organized data and insights into groups of similar items to analyze collected them from the empathy phase. Here is an example of my affinity mapping:

Affinity Mapping p1 Cap1.png

Here is example of groups that were created:

Affinity Mapping p2 Cap1.png

In general, I found that people who are frustrated could be divided into several groups of passengers: 

  • who felt a lack of awareness because they could not understand where the luggage location is; 

  • who felt a lack of control over the information about luggage location;

  • who behave as a leader and go ahead of the crowd to understand the way where they can find the baggage claim area and get their luggage on their own;

  • who are followers quietly follow the crowd to the place where they can find the luggage. 

Empathy Map

As a UI/UX designer, I organized insights, observations, and quotes that I collected from user interviews into an empathy map. 
It helped me to practice empathy by being in the users’ shoes, organizing, sharing, and making sense of research data points to understand the broader influences in our users’ lives and create the users I want to help based on their pain points, goals, feelings, thoughts, and behaviors.
Here is an example of an empathy map board:

Empathy Map. AirLuggage Mobile App with New Font.png

Persona

As a UI/UX designer, by creating a persona I wanted to understand “Who am I designing this product for?” by focusing on my users’ behaviors. 
My persona is Brian, he represents the group of people who felt a lack of control over finding information about their luggage upon arrival at the final destination airport. Brian's frustration with navigating in the airport to find his luggage is the uncertainty of whether his luggage has been lost or not. 
If the luggage did not arrive at the baggage claim, travelers may worry that their bags have been lost, which can cause feelings of anxiety and a sense of loss of control. The lack of control over the situation can further exacerbate their stress levels, as they are left waiting and uncertain about the status of their belongings. This uncertainty can make the process of retrieving luggage after a flight a difficult and emotionally taxing experience for many travelers.
Here is an example of a persona below:

Persona Brain AirLuggage Mobile App with new font.png

Journey Map

To visualize the process that my persona, Brian, goes through to accomplish the goal to find his luggage, I created a journey map. The journey map starts by compiling a series of Brian's actions into a timeline. And then, the timeline was fleshed out with Brian's thoughts and emotions to create a narrative.
Here is an example of journey mapping for Brian: 

Jorney map Brian.png

How Might We

How Might We reduce frustration in air luggage management by supporting airline passengers in retrieving information about their luggage status with instructions on how to get to their baggage location?
How Might We reduce frustration for Brian when getting out of the plane and retrieving luggage?
How Might We support Brain in retrieving their luggage location with its status?
How Might We be aware passengers of luggage location at specific baggage claims upon arrival at the final destination airport?

Solution Statement

Create an app that guides Brian at the airport so he retrieves his luggage status and find the support needed.

Information Architecture

Sitemap

I created a mobile app sitemap to visually represent the hierarchy of the AirLuggage mobile app that shows how pages are prioritized, linked, and labeled and how my users could move throughout the AirLuggage app.
Here is an example of the app sitemap: 

IA_Sitemap AirLuggage Mobile App.png

User Flow

As a UI/UX designer, I created user flows for the visual representation of the experience I am creating that guides Brian in an airport so he retrieves his luggage and finds the support needed.

Here is an example of user flow when the passenger arrives at the final destination airport and after the lending starts looking for information about the luggage status. As a result, the information was found without any problems by using AirLuggage mobile app. After identifying himself Brain is guided with an airport map which gives him control of navigation to the baggage claim area.

User Flow 1 Return user AirLuggage Mobile App.png

User Story

The user stories that include in my MVP are high-priority tasks that will help reduce Brian’s frustration in retrieving his luggage.
Must-Have features are:

  • Retrieving the status of the passenger’s luggage;

  • Given directions to the Baggage claim belt;

  • Contacting customer support.

Here is an example of user stories and MVP:

User Story Map AirLuggage App.jpeg

Ideation Phase. Round 1

In the ideation phase, I created sketches for my primary mobile platform and then designed sketches of one screen for secondary platforms: desktop and tablet. After sketching I conducted guerilla usability tests and added changes to my screens based on the feedback that I received during the test. Then I designed low-fidelity wireframes in the Figma tool and conducted the next round of usability tests.  After that, I created high-fidelity wireframes and conducted the last round of usability testing to get feedback from users and make my last changes before creating the final version of high-fidelity screens.

Sketches

As a UI/UX designer, I wanted to bring my ideas to “life”. And sketching helped me to get my ideas out of my head onto paper.

During primary research, in user interviews, I heard several users say the following:

  1. It took them time to figure out where to go to find the luggage after arrival at the final destination airport;

  2. Had frustration when they came to the baggage claim area and did not find their luggage on their baggage belt;

  3. Spent more time than they expected looking at airline customer service;

 This information led me to include sketching screens of important Red Routes with:

  • luggage details to find luggage status;

  • found luggage status and airport map included for giving directions to the baggage claim area;

  • luggage status  where the passenger will be notified that "Your baggage has not arrived yet" and  be able to check the location of the luggage;

  • luggage status where the passenger is notified that luggage status is not found and is able to contact airline customer support.

Here are examples of sketching screens:

Red Route 1.png
Red Route 2.png
Red Route 3.png
Red Route 4.png

Testing Phase. Round 1

Sketching the red routes of my app helped me to communicate my ideas and get feedback about them easily during the first round of usability testing.

Guerilla Usability Testing

As a UI/UX designer, I know that it is important to follow a general design rule to “test early and test often”. I conducted Guerilla Usability Testing with 5 participants to discover usability issues that can be improved early. Also, I used the latest revisions of the red route sketches. And I converted my sketched screens into a clickable prototype by using a prototype on paper into an interactive prototype with Marvel. It allowed my testers to interact with screens in a more true-to-life manner on their mobile phones.

The tasks for each test participant to complete were:

  • Retrieve luggage status information;

  • Navigate to the baggage claim area;

  • Contact airline customer service.

Findings

After I conducted Guerilla Usability Testing I found several pain points. Here is one of them:

Guerilla UT Round 1 with Chages.png

Ideation Phase. Round 2

Low-Fidelity Wireframe

After conducting guerilla usability testing and collecting user feedback I made the changes to the design of several screens and created low-fidelity wireframes.

Here are examples of the low-fidelity wireframes for all screens:

LF Wireframes AirLuggage.png

Testing Phase. Round 2

Usability Testing

I conducted the second round of usability testing for my design by using an interactive low-fidelity prototype and inviting 5 new participants to discover usability issues. 

The tasks for each test participant to complete were the same as they were during the first round of the testing phase. They were the following:

  • Retrieve luggage status information;

  • Navigate to the baggage claim area;

  • Contact airline customer service.

Findings

After I conducted the second round of Usability Testing I found several pain points. Here is one of example:

Guerilla UT Round 2 with Changes.png

Ideation Phase. Round 3

The third round of the ideation phase included the visual design process where I created the moodboard, and developed the style guide, which led me to create high-fidelity screens.

Style Guide

As UI/UX designer I developed a high-level style guide to use as a visual foundation for my project. 

I was defining and deciding on a color palette, fonts for project headers and body text, iconography, UI elements (components such as buttons, dropdowns, and form fields), and imagery. By choosing all those elements for my app, create an emotional connection between the app and the user, an easy-to-understand hierarchy, easy readability, and user-friendly navigation within my app. Also, I was trying the user feel comfortable and take the intended action. 

I choose the Roboto font family because Roboto is one of the industry-standard fonts used by industry leaders.  I defined the size and weight of the headers and body content that I used throughout the UI of my product and it was defined based on examples of industry leaders and the latest version of Google’s open-source design system, Material Design 3.

Icons are part of the visual language and when I made decisions on what kind of icon style for my product to establish I decided to choose icons from a preexisting icon library, Material Design Icons.

I used existing UI kits to get inspiration for my own UI elements. In my style guide, I included UI elements such as buttons, dropdowns, a keyboard, a calendar, and form fields.

I used illustrations as part of the branding throughout my product. Like color palettes, imagery is an essential part of setting the tone of a product as well as reinforcing brand personality and emotional connections with users. By using my imagery I was trying to make a user feel comfortable, compel a user to take action and instill trust in my product. 

Here is an example of my style guide:

Style Guide.png

High-Fidelity Wireframe

After conducting the second round of usability testing, collecting user feedback, and working on the visual design process I created high-fidelity wireframes.

Here are examples of the high-fidelity wireframes for all screens of AirLuggage Mobile App:

HF Wireframes AirLuggage.png

Testing Phase. Round 3

Usability Testing

In the third round of usability testing the same as in the previous two phases of testing, I conducted 5 moderated usability tests remotely with 5 new participants that had experience problems related to their luggage at the final arrival destination airport. Each of my test participants was given the same tasks and asked the same questions.

Here are examples of tasks:

  • Retrieve luggage status information;

  • Navigate to the baggage claim area;

  • Contact airline customer service.

Findings

After I conducted the third round of Usability Testing I received positive feedback on my design of the user experience and user interface. One thing I found during the test section is that some test participants expected to have more options to contact airline customer support. But despite that in general there are were no confusion with completing any tasks by any test participant.

Final Design

Prototype

Based on the positive feedback after the third round of testing, there were no changes in the high-fidelity wireframes after completing the last testing phase. Here is an example of the last version of the interactive prototype of the AirLuggage mobile app.

Next step for this project

If I could continue to work on this project, I would add the following:

  • Add interactive GPS Airport Map;

  • Check the status before the passenger gets into the airplane;

  • Notification about baggage status if the aircraft has delays;

  • Add information about luggage status if there is more than one layover, and the passenger had delays;

  • Scan option for a confirmation number or luggage tag;

  • Add more options to reach customer support, for example by:

    • requesting a call;

    • call by yourself;

    • chat with customer service.

Conclusion

I learned that it is highly important for people to save time in finding information about their luggage when they arrive at the final destination airport. In my opinion, the solution that I created could improve the experience of people who are looking for this type of information and help airlines to provide digital solutions that will improve relationships with their customers and save time in resolving issues with luggage management.

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