THE RESEARCH

For this project, I used the IDEO service design book to guide me through the entire process. I started by getting as much information from over 20 backpackers. I also had the opportunity to spend the day at a boarding gate at the Richmond airport and observing travelers' behaviors. By observing and interviewing travelers, and specifically backpackers, I was able to learn a tremendous amount about their specific needs, wants, and pain points.

Customer Journey During A Flight Delay

BASED ON INTERVIEWS WITH BACKPACKERS

TACKLING THE MARKER MOMENTS

Based on all my interviews and observations, I was able to pin point three moments that matter. I further defined these three moments because they would be the focus of my final solution.

1. SLEEPYHEAD

Needs beings served? 

Sleeping after an arduous leg of the journey.

 

How does it feel right now? 

Cold, hard, loud, bright, uncomfortable, unsafe

 

Why does it matter? 

People need to feel revived before getting back on a plane, and sleep is a big part of that.

 

What do I want to change?

Everything

2. SECURITY BLANKET

Needs beings served? 

None. It’s the traveler’s sole responsibility to take care of their belongings.

 

How does it feel right now? 

Always on edge, there’s a lack of trust, high awareness.

 

Why does it matter? 

It’s hard to feel at ease when you’re constantly worried about your belongings.

 

What do I want to change?

Create a service/or product that protects luggage during layovers and delays.

3. ENTERTAIN ME!

Needs beings served? 

Time goes by quicker when
you have something to do.

 

How does it feel right now? 

If done right, it feels like time at the airport was productive.But this often varies depending on the traveler. 

 

Why does it matter? 

The journey is more memorable, and enjoyable. The traveller is less grumpy, impatient, and bored.

 

What do I want to change?

Create a community atmosphere, rather than cold, stale one.

ONE MILLION STICKY NOTES

Once I had my three marker moments figured out, it was time to start ideating. I enlisted three of my backpacking friends to work through a sticky note ideation session with me. A million Post-Its later, we were able to narrow down a few solutions that would be ideal for when a backpacker is stuck in an airport. Based on all the solutions we discussed, an airport lounge as my final execution was the way to go. 

FINDING THE MARKER MOMENT SOLUTIONS

We narrowed down our list of solution considerations (and sticky notes) from hundreds to a few options per marker moment.

1. SLEEPYHEAD

  • Warm light, as opposed to fluorescent light at airports

  • Bean bags —easy to clean, comfortable to lounge

  • Cozy seating without armrests/dividers

  • Sleep bench with built in safe for backpack

  • Reserve spot through app

  • Partially enclosed nooks for semi-privacy

  • Clean

  • Sound proof
    sleeping spaces

2. SECURITY BLANKET

  • Locker under bed/near me (maybe under mattress?)

  • Additional lockers at individual gates or terminals

  • An app that works as a digital key to lock or unlock your locker space. Free for hostel world users

3. ENTERTAIN ME!

  • Travel books and other resources

  • Movies/popcorn/drinks

  • Natural light

  • Community—lounge space for games with people

  • Dope cafe/coffee shop

  • Community trading post

  • Coffee dates with fellow travelers—buddy benches

THE SPACE

Before deciding on a final space plan for the lounge, I went through many iterations of how the space would be laid out. For the sake of my sanity, I chose to use the footprint of an existing airport lounge and work around those constraints.

BRINGING THE SPACE TO LIFE

I used both Cinema 4D and Adobe Illustrator to create high fidelity renders of the space and its environmental graphics.

THE JOURNEY

CUSTOMER INTERACTIONS

It was important to visualize how customers would interact with HostelWorld and inhibit the airport lounge during extended periods of time at the airport. Since there are multiple variances and scenarios, I chose to map out the journey of someone who would be at the airport for a shorter amount of time (<5 hours) as well as someone who would be stuck at the airport overnight.

Fewer than 5 hours

CUSTOMER INTERACTION

Greater than 5 hours

CUSTOMER INTERACTION

MOOD BOARD

LOOK & FEEL

The entire airport lounge was inspired by boutique hostels; the kind of space that makes you feel welcome and comfortable the second you set foot into the space. 

 

THE BRANDING

Before landing on the final logo and identity system, I went through multiple versions and iterations of logomarks. It was important to make sure that the final logo would pair harmoniously with HostelWorld's existing brand. In the end, I chose to work with three different typefaces to highlight the backpackers' playfulness, eclecticism, and constant motion.