As private jet ownership continues to grow around the world, one of the private aviation industry’s leading companies has just elevated their owners’ experience.
We’re happy to share that the Flexjet app, the latest ArcTouch designed and developed app for iPhone, is now available in the App Store.
Our client Flexjet serves thousands of members who share ownership of its fleet of private aircraft. The app gives owners the ability to book and manage trips from their phones, get pertinent pre-flight information, and view account information on the go. The app project represents yet another example of our expertise in travel and hospitality, with notable projects including Travelocity, Hotel Tonight, Travelzoo and the award-winning Skyjet app (Flexjet’s sister company).
The Flexjet app strategy
In the project’s app strategy phase, our team worked closely with Flexjet stakeholders to understand the target audience: their owners, which primarily include top business executives. To satisfy this audience, we needed to meet two key requirements:
- Provide access to relevant information at the right time for the super-busy executive
- Create a premium experience consistent with the experience of flying on private jets
Relevant information is delivered to the owner’s iPhone in two ways. The first is with pre-flight push notifications. The second is through coupling relevant content with elegant design. For example, the trip details screen design changes as you near a destination so that key relevant details are highlighted.
To deliver a luxury brand experience, we took a Minimum Lovable Product (MLP) approach to defining the feature set. Flexjet knew their owners would need more than a typical lean minimum viable product to be satisfied and feel the app delivered great value. As a result, the first version of this app is more feature rich than most.
“Our team has taken the time to design an app that is a true differentiator in the fractional marketplace, meets the personalized needs of our Owners, allows us to serve them better with every tap, and delivers more value with every interaction,” said Flexjet Chief Executive Officer Michael Silvestro.
Flexjet UX design: Information at the right time for all types of users
One of the design requirements for the Flexjet app was to make it intuitive for all users — regardless of how experienced they are with using mobile apps.
Ease of use was especially important when designing the trip request booking process. We included the ability to search nearby airports or simply rebook a past trip. The app makes it easy to request services like catering or ground transportation. Robust error message handling — and explaining in simple terms why some form field entries weren’t appropriate — was also an important part of creating a great user experience.
When you have an upcoming trip, you’ll find pertinent pre-flight information such as crew photos and the jet’s tail number. The app sends day-of-travel notifications that deep link directly to the trip details screen. Also, on the day of travel, at a glance you can find information about the jet, directions to the airport, and weather information. And access to Flexjet’s account management team is a tap away via phone or message.
Key account information is summarized, so Flexjet owners can quickly see their flight-hour usage, high-level contract information, flight activity, and billing history.
User interface design befitting of a luxury experience
After developing a strong UX foundation, the ArcTouch design team ensured the app would shine with delightful elements in line with the Flexjet brand. The experience of flying on private aircraft requires user interface (UI) design that speaks to luxury and sophistication. After all, the design needed to live up to the Flexjet brand promise, “You won’t just be flown, you’ll be moved.”
Destination photos of each trip serve as a background for upcoming travel. A custom in-flight map of any jet’s location in real-time is branded with Flexjet’s look and feel. Jet details and cabin amenities have custom logos to represent all the features that come with each aircraft.
An app is only as good as its technical execution
Often, the unheralded hero of a great app is the technical architecture. As users, we just expect apps to work — and work well.
One of the things we’re most proud of is how our engineering team worked with Flexjet’s internal technology team to build and integrate 25 custom APIs to optimize data flow from the back-end systems that power the app.
We created integrations with third-party APIs for weather (DarkSky) and jet tracking (Flight Aware). One key breakthrough we made was building a custom in-flight jet map using Flight Aware data, so you can view a Flexjet branded destination path of their fleet jets when in flight.
We also built a custom solution so you can create an itinerary of up to six legs, view the summary of that itinerary, and go back and edit individual details of the trip. That required creating some advanced logic.
Check it out, or at least admire the jets
You do need to be a current owner of shares in a Flexjet aircraft to gain full access to the app features. But anyone, including prospective customers, can preview all the Flexjet aircraft in the app. Download the Flexjet app here — it might serve as some career inspiration.