Flight Itinerary Receipts Suck...

...So I had a crack at what I'd like them to look like

July 01, 2014

4 minutes reading time

The Problem
What’s my flight number? What airline am I with? When is this flight? How much did this cost? How long is the flight? Is there a stopover? How do I check in? Do you find yourself ever asking some of these questions? When I see the state of some of my booking receipts from companies such as LastMinute, Orbitz or Expedia, I certainly do!

The Solution

1) The logo! You would think this would be pretty obvious, having the logo on the top left of the publication is pretty common practice. However I was surprised to see how often I would an email from Expedia.co.uk with a tiny squished (literally it looked like they couldn’t find the correct size image and attempted to render one down instead… unsuccessfully.)
2) A large section header! It’s clear what is going to be displayed in the below section. Without a shadow of a doubt, I can confidently say I know where I can find my travel itinerary, something previously which was a pain in the ass.
3) My name! Beautiful, wouldn’t you say? Oh and what’s that clearly written underneath? It’s my ticket number! Oh you shouldn’t have! I would have thought it would be common sense to put these two together, or at least nearby one and other.
4) Ahh my favourite part, the flight details. Personally I love information, there is no such thing as an information overload. You can never have enough information. From here, it’s very clear to see the date and locations of travel, departure times and terminals, flight duration, flight number, stopover information etc. This is what every traveller needs. In reality it’s nice to know how long I’m going to be in that tin can in the sky defying gravity.
5) The call to action for check-in. People commonly think that once they receive the receipt that they’re done. Wrong! More than likely your airline offers online check-in, and your bookings provider knows what airline they booked you with, so why not put the two together? It makes life a lot easier on the traveller.
6) Payment details, probably the least favourite section (unless they snagged a great deal) but it’s important to have the breakdown as clear as possible. Remember the transaction has already been completed at this stage, so you might be thinking what’s the point in making any of this information clear? The sales pyramid ends at the end of the transaction with the sales associate (in this case a computer) having done everything to encourage the customer to come back and continue to use their service. Customers are able to tell which companies truly have their best interest at heart from “little” aspects such as the receipt.
7) And last, but certainly not least, the additional information. The whole point of this is to reduce the barrier to entry for the customer. It should be the primary goal of the bookings provider to look after and take care of the customer. By clearly giving them all the information they need to make the process easy, the bookings provider has done their part.

By no means is the a complete or final solution, but it’s a start. Through countless iterations, conducting actual user research, and understanding the psychology of how users expect and naturally anticipate information to be shared can a genuinely new concept originate. This was simply a way to express how I would like the information to be shared (but let’s be honest, anything is better than what we currently get!)

Update 09/07/2014: I realise the use of the yellow for links was a poor decision looking at the final render. The thought process behind it was to add a sense of uniform branding to the publication (Expedia = blue & yellow, Kayak = orange & black, Momondo = purple & black, etc. )

Update 13/07/2014: Credit where credit is due! These are the designers behind the icons used.
Arrow: thenounproject.com/term/arrow/57623/
Airplane: thenounproject.com/term/airplane/2644/
Help: thenounproject.com/term/help/38009/
Printer: thenounproject.com/term/printer/31594/
Map-Marker: thenounproject.com/term/map-marker/462/

Update 19/07/2014: By including the use of Actions users can easily navigate through the itinerary and find the relevant links, such as checkin, and be notified of live flight changes.