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HotelsCombined App/Site Redesign


The challenge

Improving a successful hotel search experience to remain competitive in a hyper-crowded market, and deliver value to a wide range of users and needs

The initiatives

I redesigned all facets of the product, from the member’s account and calendar, to the booking funnel and map search views.

1. Booking calendar and search redesign

2. Matching traveller types’ needs to filters

3. Member’s account redesign

4. Optimising the journey for all traveler types


1. Improving the booking calender and search

Contextual observations, market research, UX/UI design, user testing

To improve the app that was already doing well, I looked at the key entry element—the calendar—for any friction or pain points. I gave users simple tasks to perform on our existing calender and observed their experience.

Key Insights: A frictionless experience all depended on the smoothest micro experiences, such as when a user chose a check-in date and moved to select the check-out date, etc.

I also studied other hotel booking and calendar-based apps to gather the best micro-interactions. I asked the developer who worked on the original calender to join me in these activities so he could advise on technical considerations.

I wire-framed and tested various solutions to validate or disprove assumptions, and to determine the best combinations of micro-interactions.

I evolved the design and then tested with A/B testing, where it succeeded in out-converting the existing experience.

Try the prototype to see the micro-transitions

Book a trip from the 8th to the 13th.

2. Matching traveller types’ needs to filters

Desktop research, concept testing, A/B testing

To better understand traveller types, I researched industry leaders, review sites, and travel blogs to identify five main profiles: Solo, Couples, Business, Family, and Groups.

I then reviewed user feedback comments from 40+ more travel sites and blogs to capture key words used by each traveller type and determine key needs and terminology.

Key insights: The 5 traveler types had their own sub groups with different needs.

With this more succinct understanding of traveler types, I mapped traveler type needs to our hotel features to display preset filters and/or recommendations per traveller types

These filters were A/B tested with various experiences.

3. Members account redesign

Try the prototype

4. Optimising the journey for all traveller types

Co-design workshop


We wanted to ensure key pages provide key needs for all traveler types

At HotelsCombined, the team had a lot of ideas, and they collectively fitted into all of our traveler types. So I gathered together people from each persona and ran a workshop to explore how they booked a holiday, from initial research to clicking ‘Book now’ to arriving at the hotel.

We asked each participant to map out their experience on the wall, talking aloud as they did, creating a booking experience timeline from multiple perspectives.

Key insights: We later analysed this to determine what were the common needs and content elements preffered by all traveller types at each stage.

We then asked the group to review competitor search-result page designs and capture their thoughts and feelings.

Key insights: We later analysed this to determine how we could improve our search results page.

The collective insight from the workshop helped guide wireframes for a new booking journey flow.


Combined, these initiatives contributed to a 4.5% increase in bookings and 400% increase in customer accounts in the first few months, which was significant in such a competitive market with powerful players such as, Expedia, and Trivago.

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