My Take on the Travel App
Feb, 2, 2019
Travel is more than an interest of mine, it’s a passion. The ability to explore and learn about a new place, while being able to witness a different way of that which I’m accustomed to is a very rewarding educational experience for me.
One issue that I frequently encounter is trying to plan trips with friends and family members who I can not sit down and explore all of the options with.
You see, many of my friends have scattered across the country, some to other countries. But that doesn’t preclude us from meeting up in some remote or exotic destination.
How would a group of friends plan a trip together when each person might live in a different city? Does one person identify themselves as the planner and come up with a suggested itinerary? If so, how do they communicate this? Perhaps with screenshots, links, and a multi-paragraph or bullet point email to the group? What are responses like? More paragraphs, opinions, proposed alternatives, suggestions, and so on? Most likely. At least that has been my experience.
A Better Way
There has to be a better way.
Sure, there are plenty of travel apps out there that one can use to keep track of their itinerary, things they want to see, find out what’s near them at all times, but what I haven’t seen is an app that provides a visual interface which enables multiple people to plan a trip together, remotely.
This is what I am setting out to do.
There are certainly some early challenges with this prospect. How might I:
- Build an interface that allows a person to plan out their trip as they see it
- Enable the user to create branching pathways in their itineraries and effectively communicate this to the user through the UI
- Provide a way for the user to share their itinerary with friends and to allow the friends to vote on their preferred pathways or to suggest alternatives
- Effectively include all of the above in an attractive and easy to understand interface that allows the user and their friends to build, share, modify, and agree on a proposed itinerary for their travels
This is some pretty complex stuff. When I try to plan out the features, I begin to realize just how many possibilities there are with what I have set out to do. My notebook is full of questions and features that pop into my mind while I’m drawing a rendition of what the opening screen may look like.
But to center myself, I have come up with five phases for this project.
- Phase 1: How the user builds their itinerary
- Phase 2: How the user adds alternatives to their itinerary
- Phase 3: How the user shares their itinerary with other users
- Phase 4: How the other users comment, vote, and suggest alternatives
- Phase 5: How the input of all the users comes together to finalize plans