Every second planes are taking off worldwide. We pay a lot of attention to costs, destinations, boarding, and many many other things, but there’s one thing we don’t care about, and it applies to your boarding pass. Specifically, the kind of usability it should have?
…they’ve remained virtually unchanged with thermal printers:
…and successfully migrated to Passbook:
So What’s Wrong With Them?
- Ungrouped fields: time of departure and gate closing time are in two opposite corners
- Tiny text: good luck to old people checking it with bad lighting, not to mention while they’re on the go
- Wrong visual priorities: the most prominent elements are the airport codes. If you know anything about your flight without needing to look at your boarding pass, it’s your origin and destination. You’d probably like to know everything else: gate, seat, etc.
Instead we should appeal to:
- Quantitative usability research: how long it takes (in seconds) to find necessary information on the ticket
- Percentage of mistakes: the ratio of latecomers to boarded passengers
- Downtime caused by long pick-ups
The idea is:
- All the right information
- At the right time
- Without any of the noise
Improvement 1. Grouping
— Icons8 (@icons_8) June 6, 2016
So we started moving blocks before figuring out grouping horizontally is virtually impossible.
- On the one hand, you have to put the blocks close to each other
- On the other, they have variable lengths: names, cities, even dates can have very different lengths
Improvement 2. Icons
We didn’t like the “rear” icon: it’s not clear which half of the aircraft is highlighted. Also, we thought we could use more precision: in wide-body aircrafts, flight attendants have to direct each of the 400 passengers to one of the aisles.
With a redesign like this we could expect:
- Fewer passengers missing their flights
- Fewer flight delays due to missing passengers
- Fewer delays for removing baggage of missing passengers
- Less load on airport information desks
- Faster boarding: people know where to look for their seat numbers
About the Author
Ivan Boyko is a founder of Icons8. He got his first job after drawing a banner with CTR of 43%. After years of creating icons, he specializes in rapid prototyping and backlog grooming.