Travel App Development: 5 Rewarding Features for Better Conversion

When it comes to travel app development, product managers have to take the customers’ needs into consideration. Everyone wants their trips to be smooth and enjoyable, so we should build applications that make their lives easier - especially when they just want to relax or have some fun time. 

Getting to the end of Indian summer, I always feel like having just one more short trip somewhere near the sea to extend the good sunny days. However, on the other hand, I sometimes feel that organising everything can take more energy than I would actually gain. Of course, I’d still want to go, so there has to be a way to  please travellers out there. 

Travel app development can bring better conversion

As users want their trips to be in good hands they are more and more likely to have everything in their own hands – as far as I’ve experienced. To handle everything in one place, travel mobile app development has to pull their socks up to create something that will mean perfect solution for these people.

You can now wonder why I’m talking just about applications. The thing is that, compared to websites in the same topic, travel apps see a lot more conversions than websites, to be very clear the number is four times higher – according to Knowing this, I’m pretty sure it is worth building an app, even if we have to put quite a lot  information in it. So the travel app development cost might be a bit higher than if we built a website, but it will definitely pay off.

Another thing regarding mobile apps is that nowadays it is extremely important to let the users take care of their travelling issues on the go. In general, people tend to use their smartphones much more than before instead of sitting down in front of the laptop. It is understandable that this tendency is just growing for people who are actually travelling when trying to look up some information about – let’s say – the hotel they are going to stay in. Here is a cool mobile-first design checklist every designer needs to know.

At the end of the day, the main goal is always to give solutions to your users’ problems, so you have to take this very seriously. Happy users mean better conversion. Not just in terms of travelling, but in general.

It’s never too late for travel app development – UX studio case with Liligo

Don’t worry if you already have an application, it is never too late to improve it. One of our favourite projects was about redesigning France’s market leading travel app, Liligo. We conducted continuous research, explored many ideas, and at the end managed to recreate the application’s user experience in a way that users became much happier than they were before.

The design of the search function of Liligo
The design of the search function of Liligo

Before we started to work on Liligo’s app design, it used to be hard to use, but with constant research and ideation we came up with the best travel app features and traits possible. Just a few to mention: detailed filtering options, easy search flow, sorted results. 

It is also important to mention that UX design should never come without UX research. If you happen to have some designers to help you with creating the application’s interface but no researchers, try to look for some researchers to conduct user interviews. It is the best way to prove that the created design will work and users will be able to understand your product. 

Things to keep in mind if you develop a travel app

What exactly makes a travel app enjoyable? Well, there are some basic characteristics to be included. Let’s take a quick look at these traits before we jump into the list of the most important features!

Simple, easily scannable interfaces

I mentioned a few lines above that travellers often check their travel details on the go. They want to find what they look for easily, but most importantly very fast. Because of this the application’s interface should be very simple and minimalist where all the information is organised in a logical order. Always avoid the chaos of unnecessary details that drives the user’s attention away!

A screen from one of our projects, Stylelike
A screen from one of our projects, Stylelike

Don’t hide relevant information

Yes, it can be tricky to find the balance between transparency and showing too much information. There are some details you have to put on the screen, in order to give your users all the information they need to understand and navigate your app. It is extremely disappointing experience if a user finds out that there are, for example, extra fees, or any other charges after you managed to lead him/her through the sales funnel. 

Try to mix this with the previous thought, and organize the important details logically. This way all the necessary information can be visualized nicely, so people won’t get overwhelmed and will find out everything in time.

Provide offline access

It might be an extra or a fancy thing to integrate in your app, but why not giving users something that will ease their lives? It happens many times that we lose our internet connection when we travel abroad, which makes orientation quite hard. Try to find a hotel or the bus stop without a map on your phone – it makes you lose precious minutes or even hours of your trip!

Providing offline access

5 most rewarding features In travel apps 

So, as we have seen there are some basic rules and thoughts related to travel app development, but without the best travel app features it would be quite hard to create such an experience that brings the desired conversion. However, it is a challenge to find the right balance between all these functions: it can be tricky to decide which ones you need, and which ones are just too much in one product.

Now, I am going to list those features that will definitely make your users as happy as possible and, as a consequence, will most probably improve your conversion rate. 

Geolocation: finding services and attractions easily

To start with something very useful, consider building a geolocation feature in the application. When travellers arrives at a new place, they might want to search for nearby attractions, restaurants or bars immediately. 

foursquare travel app

Just imagine yourself landing in a foreign country, getting back your data on your phone. First – okay, you might want to get to the city from the airport, but secondly – you will want to understand the surrounding physical space to know what your opportunities are. It’s very pleasing to see the search results as soon as you can, especially on the map. 

Travel itinerary generator 

One of the most enjoyable travel app features can be the travel itinerary generator: the app asks for the location only and creates a plan with sights to see and events to attend.

It can be a killer move in travel app development to combine this feature with social sharing. People love telling their friends about their plans, especially if they can invite them to have fun!

Personal account, integrated messaging system and social feed

The next one comes in the continuation of the previous one. During travel app development it’s good to take into account that the application should be an easy-to-use personal assistant. People want to save their favourite places and share the experience with their friends. 

This is why it is indispensable to have a personal account, but consider also to build an integrated messaging system and a social feed in it. Besides, if your app is connected to social media, it can be a free promotion opportunity for your business. 

Reviews and ratings

Being able to add reviews and rate places can be a big advantage for your app. People like to share their opinions, what is more, they want to see others’ opinions about the same places, so they can decide which place or event they want to attend. 

Gathering information is more than important when travelling to a new place, so if you have this travel app feature in your product, it is very likely that users will stay inside your application and won’t look for other solutions. 

Trip advisor rating

Integrated language translator

If you don’t want to lose your users, not even for two minutes, consider building an integrated language translator in your application. It happens very often that people find it hard to communicate with locals – for this they will look for solutions, like Google Translate, so they can express themselves in a foreign place. 

However, in order to do this, they have to open a new app on their phones. Instead of making them use something else, consider building this feature in the process of travel app development, so your users won’t have to get out of your app to use something else.

UX studio travelling app case: Wafy

We have recently had an interesting redesign project in which we had to reconsider some travel app features. The product is an application in which users can search and browse local places and events by different themes in Saudi Arabia. We designed Wafy in a way that people can enjoy and use it as much as possible. For this we integrated the following travel app features:

  • Geolocation tracking, thanks to which people can easily find anything they look for based on their actual location,
  • Personal account and integrated social feed, which allow users to share their experiences with others and save favourite places and events,
  • Reviews and ratings, that help users gather information on the places and events they are interested in.
Screens from our Wafy project

Our aim was to design Wafy in a way that users will feel comfortable while using it, and most importantly, an application that they find useful while they locally search or browse for places and events. From the user tests it turned out that these travel app features make the product enjoyable and easy to use: there are many good functions in it, while we kept them as minimalistic as possible.

The first release has been out recently with a few changes we made in the design, but there is more to come in the following months and a year. During the travel app development all the created design changes will probably be out, and you will be able to enjoy the updated application whenever you travel to Saudi Arabia.

Conclusion and findings

We have seen that some travel app features can create or break product’s success. There might be some extra work needed on the development side, but in the long run it is much more rewarding to put some of these features in your application. Although, it can’t be overseen that too much information and functions can overwhelm the users – which is definitely not the goal here.

Continue learning with UX studio

Feel free to read our last week’s article on survey design, where you can learn how to design a survey that will bring you useful results.

For additional reading, check out our Product Design book by our CEO, David Pasztor. We ship worldwide!

Martina Győrffy

Designer, passionately ready to learn all the time.
Travel and coffee lover, crazy about dogs.
Just give me a puppy in a caffetteria - my mind is blown.

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