In Australia, each state has their very own convoluted government website with information about local regulations and requirements for travellers divided up and strewn across multiple pages. This makes it incredibly confusing for those wishing to engage in regional and interstate travel. The most tenacious and tech savvy person will be able to piece together all the rules, but everyone else is left in the dark. This has also resulted in Australia’s multilingual communities missing out on vital coronavirus information as the complicated content is not translated. We are presented with a unique design opportunity, to make a web application which will address the above problems, as well as encourage local travel in a ‘COVID normal’ society. Our web application is called Seirios, named after the brightest star in our galaxy, shining light in the darkness. We thought the guiding star would be a good analogy, as stars were often used by travellers to navigate the lands.
Discount vouchers Knowing that many Australians have had a tough time financially due to COVID-19, and that they also love a bargain, we thought an enticing incentive for travel was to offer discounted vouchers for activities nearby, or in a set location. The vouchers encourage you to rediscover local attractions.
Personal account You will be able to sign-up for a personal login account during the purchase flow for a voucher, or if you go to the account page and find the sign-up CTA.
COVID-19 case notification The voucher is used as a ticket for the activity. When the voucher QR code is scanned upon redemption, the time and date of use is stamped on the voucher. If a case of COVID-19 is detected at the activity’s location in the timeframe you have attended, you will receive a notification informing you of the detection, and that you should monitor symptoms, get tested and isolate for 14 days (if required by state policy).
COVID safety rating To build trust and to make people feel safe about engaging in local tourism, each activity has a COVID safety rating. This rating is determined by reviews of those who have already experienced the activity. The review questions are based on the COVID-safe criteria for businesses found on the statewide government websites. Review questions include: identifying whether there were any hand sanitation stations on site, was the 1.5 metre rule implemented, whether surfaces were regularly cleaned, etc. The safety rating is found underneath each activity tile. Next to the rating is additional latest covid-safe information, such as whether or not you need to wear a mask to participate in an activity. Moreover, If there is a law enforced where you are only allowed to travel a certain distance from your house (e.g. a 25km circumference of movement), there is a default filter activated on the activities. Once the user has completed the COVID-safety review for the activity, they will receive a one-use discount code as a reward and an incentive to keep using our product. The discount-code can be applied to any activities available on our web-application.
Concise interstate rules and regulations To make the rules and regulations clear and digestible, we have translated the reams of copy into icons and concise copy. We have pulled the data from the multiple state government websites, so you can easily toggle and see how each state’s rules and regulations differ, if you are planning an interstate holiday. For future iterations we intend to build a translation widget so the multilingual community will be able to easily comprehend the rules and regulations.
Challenges we ran into
There were so many design opportunities for this task, so it was a real challenge determining what features to focus on, what features to put on the backlog, and what concepts and features to let go of. The time limit also reduced our scope as we wanted to have feasible design and development requirements for the determined time frame. As we are a small team, it meant that each individual had an enormous amount of work to complete. This also resulted in some oversights because we had to rush through a lot of work all at once.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
We are proud that we were able to be nimble, and quickly identify issues affecting travelers in Australia, and then ideate a response to these issues. We are proud that we were able to focus, work hard and complete the design and development in such a short time frame, whilst still working full time. Hats off to Sandra, who was able to code for 16 hours straight on one intense day. We are proud of our ideas and believe they can really help make it easier for people to navigate the complex reality of COVID-normal travel.
What we learned
We have discovered that there can be many solutions to one complex problem. Moreover, we have learnt that with hard work and dedication, we can achieve great things.
What's next for Seirios
Future iterations of the app will have a language selector or translation tool so that multilingual people can interact with the web app. We want to have a travel planning tool where you can slot in activities in timeframes throughout the day. Another feature can be multi-day holidays, where we would include accommodation as well. We want to scale up this solution so that we can include international travel, having a visual interactive map where we can see what countries are open for travel to other countries. We would also include other country’s local rules and regulations. To encourage outdoor activity, community connection, and to reinvigorate a known part of town, we want to create and include a self-guided immersive geogaming experience as an activity our users can buy a voucher for. Another feature we will include in the future is a wallet in your personal account page which will house your Vaccination passport. The Australian government has announced future plans where travelers will be required to have a vaccine passport to be able to travel interstate freely.
You can login using the existing account Email: email@example.com Password: ApecChallenge123!
Or you can simply create an account on our sign up page.