Canceled Flight Message

SCENARIO

A traveler is in an airport waiting for the last leg of a flight home when their flight gets abruptly canceled due to bad weather.

CHALLENGE

Write a message from the airline app notifying them of the cancelation and what they need to do next.

ELEMENTS

  • Headline: 45 characters
  • Body: 175 characters max
  • Button(s): 25 characters max

USER JOURNEY

It’s important to understand where the user would be when they receive this message. Since the challenge clearly states that the user is waiting for their last flight home, I assume they’re already at the airport after flying in from another city on the first flight.

User Journey – Canceled Flight Message

THOUGHT PROCESS

The challenge specifically mentions that this message is coming from the airline app. I think there are two main channels for an airline to convey this message: push notification and in-app message. For the purpose of this exercise, let’s go with the push notification.

Based on the user journey above, when the user sees the notification they’ll likely feel angry or disappointed. So our push notification needs to convey a few things:

  • Why the flight was canceled
  • Which flight was canceled
  • How long will the user have to wait
  • What the user needs to do next

POSSIBLE SOLUTIONS

Header (45 characters)

– Canceled flight

[flight number] canceled

– Sorry, your flight was canceled

This is where we can clearly tell the user what happened, and there are many ways to say this. We can go for a short, crisp message or a longer but more empathetic version.

Body (175 characters)

[flight number] to [destination] has been canceled due to [reason].

– We’ve booked you a seat on the next available flight departing at [time].

– To help you travel safely, we’ve rescheduled your flight to [time].

Here’s where we can elaborate what happened and what the user needed to do next. There could be several possibilities depending on the airline’s policy. I think the practical next steps for the airline would be to either book a new seat for the user (and perhaps provide accommodations if the new flight is scheduled for tomorrow), ask the user to contact the service desk, or let the user book a new flight on their own in the app. Either way, we need to convey a clear message here.

Button (25 characters)

– Learn more

– Contact us

– Rebook your flight

Again, we can customize the CTA message to align with the airline’s policy when flight cancelations occur. All of these CTA buttons are valid options to lead the user to the airline’s app, and each can serve different purposes.

FINAL COPY

There’s only so much we can say in a push notification since it’s designed to give a minimal amount of info, so our goal is to grab our users’ attention as much as possible. I decided to go with:

Canceled Flight

FD3609 to Calgary has been canceled due to thunderstorms. To help you travel safely, we’ve rescheduled your flight to 9:30 PM.

[CTA 1] View Flight Details
[CTA 2] Contact Us

WHY?

The headline signifies urgency and allows the user to understand the situation immediately without having to read much further.

In the body message I front-loaded the most important information: the flight number and destination, and also let the user know the flight was canceled for their safety.

The first CTA button will lead the user right into the app to view the new flight’s details and the second CTA offers a way to reach out to the airline should they wish to. To me, this message strikes a nice balance between empathy and formality.

Created with Figma
UI Kit by Anthony Choren