Seeking the perfect travel website is a bit like seeking the Holy Grail. A long, usually fruitless endeavor.
But if the perfect travel website is ever built, we’re pretty sure “they will come.”
And maybe the website that Fi designed is it.
For now, at best, most if not all travel web sites are pretty “ho hum,” especially airline and hotel websites. At worse, they are an insult to easy access and intuitive interaction.
Or as as Hotelmarketing acerbically points out, travel websites pretty much have been reduced to the lowest common denominator. “It’s all about the cheapest fares, and enough detail so you don’t end up in a bug-infested hotel where the idea of “luxury” is running water that’s a lighter shade of brown.”
Fi, the company that’s responsible for the web design for USA Today’s redesigned site, looks like it can build the better Travel Website.
Their design cuts through the “cruft” and give us the look, feel and experience badly lacking in today’s travel websites.
What are they offering?
Travel websites that are clean, with “immersive imagery” that calls the user to explore and discover
* Simple, interactive maps that allow for dragging destination icons anywhere so the traveler can explore the destination in visual detail
* Completely clutter-free user interfaces that encourage travelers to tailor their travel plans based on their mood, needs or whimsy
* Travel website with no gimmicks, pop-ups or overwhelming, confusing menus
* The ability to plan a trip by moving destination icons, which in turn trigger dynamic pictures. But the move also opens useful, simple, clean and clear information, city guides, a compelling travel arrow arrow passing from London, say, to Stockholm, with accompanying information and images that are inspiring and helpful
* A travel website where everything is on one screen: Baggage check in, seat selection. As Fi says, if don’t want to sit next to the bathroom, the ability to visually change seats on the same screen is right up there
Best bet is to take a look at Fi’s design video. Maybe check out New Media Travel’s Why Are Hotel Sites so Boring?
Wired, in praise of Fi’s forward-looking design, says “this is the travel site of the future, one we want. Desperately.”