Family Amusement Pal
A service and app design to enhance the family experience in themed and amusement parks
Try interactive prototype HERE
from Fall 2021
Subject: Family-oriented Customer Service in Amusement Parks
Hypothesis: Parents feel overwhelmed when bringing their children to amusement parks. There is a lack of customer service, especially during peak times.
Business: Increase revenue and provide better service for customers.
Users: Less waiting time and have quality family time in the amusement park.
The process contains two main phases, research and design. Testing and iteration are also included.
Market Research (Secondary Research)
We started project with a secondary research on the theme/amusement park industry. Aaccording to the research, the four main customer delight and outrage in amusement parks are:
Cleanliness and Service
Staff and Service
Surprise and Joy
Goals Being Satisfied
According to Spectrum News, in 2020, survey finds that more than 70 percent of parents are not interested in visiting a theme park this year; they are concerning about:
Most of the factors are related to service and maintenance of the parks. So for the next steps, we dig into the family experience (with children) and related service in amusement parks.
No Reason for the Second Time
User Research I: Survey
We used the findings from market research as reference to conduct further user researches; the first step is survey.
Sample: Randomly picked parents from an amusement park (Six Flag)
Deliver: Google Form
Questions and Duration: 12 questions, 5-10 mins
Total Participant: 37
Average Satisfaction for Utility and Service
The main takeaways are presented above. In summary, the majority of parents are visiting the amusement park with kids under 10 years old. The main reasons for amusement park visits are leisure time and fulfill children's want. Waiting in line can be the experience with lowest score.
User Research I: Interview
Based on the survey, we decided to focus on parents with children age 0-10 to gain more insights and find out there specific needs.
We conducted 6 interviews with parents (their children's ages are arranged from 2 to 9) to see the differences and similarities in their needs. In general, parents with younger kids tend to have a longer list to prepare; they want more for kids/babies-care. The summary is:
Other Research: Specialist Interview
For better understanding of location-based entertainment experience design, we interviewed one professional from the entertainment industry, Professor Ruth Comley from Carnegie Mellon University.
She has a specialty in the Entertainment Technology industry. And she runs a haunted house as a family business. During the interview, she mentioned three key insights of the amusement park experience design:
Experience: to surprise the users!
“Why would people go to an amusement park if they can get the same experience at home?” But it's harder to satisfy customers nowadays since they can easily and conveniently get what they want at home. For example, in the past, customers were easily fulfilled with a simple roller coaster, but nowadays, they want either super thrilling facilities or very immersive ones.
Audiences: to “make a choice between different age groups”!
The reason that Disneyland and Universal Studio can exist close to each other is that Disney targets young children while Universal targets teenagers.
Service: to generate revenue for investing better facilities and interactive technologies.
Last but not least, amusement parks need to make money to invest in better facilities and interactive technologies to attract more customers. In order to make money, the first thing they need to do is to satisfy children since parents pay for their children’s wants. If the parks can make things that children want badly, parents will buy them.
As the first step to help us define needs, we developed two personas. Considering that children with different age can largely influence parents' needs, we defined the two personas.
Problems and Needs
Based on the research and persona, we mapped families' journey of amusement park experience, and defined the experience trajectory to figure out problems and needs. The main opportunity of improving services happens when families are waiting for rides and taking time to rest.
It could be hard for amusement parks to fully upgrade their current facilities.
So we decided to design an application as a service to increase the efficiency of the waiting experience and boost the child-care services in amusement parks.
To boost the effectiveness of the wait-in-line experience in the amusement park, also provide a better experience for parents with children age 0-10 in the amusement park, three functions are designed.
Visual Design Focus
Wireframe to High-fidelity
Test, Feedback and Iteration
We conducted several usability test to observe real users action and collected their feedbacks.
Feedbacks are mainly from two aspects: online queuing system, device and platform
Leave parents 10 mins to catch on their rides
For devices and platforms, we also think about further developing an apple watch platform, which can vibrate to remind parents. By using apple watch, we can prevent parents from paying too much on the phone and ignoring their kids.
After research and design for the whole service/application product, we better understood the life cycle behind the application, system and business. Here is a system map we abstract from the process.
Moreover, thinking about multiple platforms and wearable devices can also benefit end users in the modern digital age. Incorporating different human sensing and different device can help the design to fully utilize varies of signals, and generate a better service.