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Movie ticket redesign

A project to redesign movie tickets while focusing on the ergonomic aspects of the ticket.

The Problem

A lot of users face troubles while trying to scan through movie tickets that are poorly designed. Thus, this project tackles common design issues that are often overlooked from the perspective of its visual ergonomics.

Even though the ticket layouts followed by most theatres seem to be similar, they tend to make mistakes and overlook several design aspects that can greatly improve its functionality and the user experience. Thus to identify such design issues we prepared points to be discussed in a focused group, such as the different sorts of users, an individually prepared task analysis, a list of touchpoints, and so on.

By conducting a focused group and using a movie ticket sample, we identified and listed down some important ergonomic issues and how they cause inefficiencies in the system and the user experience. 


5 days


3 members for collective research and problem identification


To redesign for a more efficient movie ticket


After researching with the team, every student was given the task to create one redesign of their own, using the insights identified in the focused group.

During the focused group, we identified several different types of issues that could take place with no particular priority to simply prioritize the most on the visual egonomics of the design as it is the focus of the project and to meet the short project schedule.

The major ergonomic issues can all be related to the information being hard to scan and navigate through, but having a consistent layout can help the users get accustomed to the ticket, but the sample does not have sufficient spacing between the segments to differentiate them as separate chunks, which is the main cause of the confusion. To resolve this I considered using different font sizes, fonts, colours, etc, but considering that keeping it simple would be the best, I tried to find out a better way to chunk the information by using a single font. To do the chunking most people would simply divide the information based on what people want to check more often than the other information but to further break it down I wanted to add a bit of user experience design into it just to have a clear vision of what I wanted to make so it would reflect what I want to pursue.

The movie ticket has information that can be considered more important given different stages in the task of watching a movie, so instead of having it be a limitation its best to use this as the main focus of the user experience. To do so I thought it would be easier to rotate the information so it makes it easier to notice one chunk faster than the others but a ticket with rotated information would just cause confusion if the method of its use isn't made clear. Thus, using the form of a wrist band we can make the user view the text in different ways, based on which part of the hand they look at. Considering the fact that there are not a lot of different chunks this idea was perfect for what I was going for and thus I started thinking about the use case scenarios as we went on.

Artboard 1-100.jpg

Final Concept

After exploring the options and finalizing on the form of a wristband, the project comes to its final stage of creating the prototype.

Even after condensing the options and focussing on the form and style of the ticket, there are several other factors to be taken into consideration. The final factors that I listed to focus on were the chunking of the information, measurements of the ticket, experience factor and usability of the ticket.

These factors are the most important aspects to the project and the very essence of the movie ticket, as a design is only of value if its implementation brings more customer satisfaction and efficiency to the system. Thus, I began with segregation of the information on the ticket based on its relevance during different stages of the task of watching a movie, mainly purchase of the ticket, checking into the theatre, watching the movie, purchases inside the theatre and other factors such as the main systematic purposes of the ticket in a movie theatre.

After I established what I wanted to do with all the information and placing them into a systematic order and hierarchy, I decided to work on the experience factor of the ticket and my conclusion was that the ticket needed to be integrated into the system in such a way that it should in no way become a bother to the customer and should serve its unique purpose which I had a very clear image of when I decided the form of the ticket, which was to use QR and Bar codes for mobile and old barcode compatible machines during purchasing snacks, etc. This not only allows the user to pay without a wallet or mobile but also allows the orders taken to easily be listed in with the seat numbers, and allow easy access in and out of the theatre. 

Even though all these features contribute to the experience and efficiency of the system, they are only successful in they can do so without causing a major inconvenience or problem to the system. To successfully integrate these factors into the ticket I was required to create a ticket that would suit most users and would be able to perform the way it is meant to be, and thus I began to design the ticket to suit the anthropometric data of the users in India using references from "Indian Anthropometric Dimensions for Ergonomic Design Practice By Debkumar Chakrabarti 1997" which is the commonly used reference book for most Indian design students. Even though the exact data need isn't mentioned in the book, with some approximations and approval from our professor I proceeded to design my ticket with 130 mm as the minimum wrist diameter and 200 as the max thus allowing me to use 130 mm for the ticket info and the remainder of the 220 mm as the buffer to paste the other end of the ticket.

To ensure the usability of the ticket, I concluded that it would be most effective for the bar code and QR code to face in the direction the palm faces and the exact opposite so that they can be scanned using phones and counter machines comfortably by the user, while the user can view the movie information and seat information independently depending upon the orientation the look at their band, this allows the user to scan the ticket faster for the information they need.

The experience of the user is not the only factor at work. by the use of bar and QR codes, we can save the space required for the other copies of the ticket that are to be collected by the guard and the ticket counter. As indicated by the yellow text in the image that says "Tear" it indicates the copy of the ticket to be collected by the ticket counter while the other end on the back which indicates "Peel" in green is the copy for the security which can simply scan the ticket and collect the peeling copy to which allows them to put the band around the customer's wrist.

ticketArtboard 1 copy.png


To quickly summarize everything up to the point, I shall skip out on some minor details and the reasons for making certain decisions for this short brief.

  • To start the project, we operated in a team of 3 to do some basic research and conduct an analysis individually to discuss in a focused group. This helped us identify problems faster by making sure that all of us were not focusing on the same points.

  • Since we could not attain sufficient data samples to prioritized problems, I simply focused on the topic of the project (ergonomics) and the user experience, since the other problems seemed like they were less probable to take place.

  • Creating a deeper information hierarchy didn't seem effective and thus I broke the chunks into information used in different stages of the task.

  • Rather than only using colours and font sizes to differentiate between chunks, I decided to use a wristband form to rotate the information, using the gestalt laws to differentiate between chunks.

  • The design is a completely new format and there must be an incentive for the users to switch to it other than simply a better format, and thus, I decided to include barcodes and QR codes fr certain user experience aspects of the system with several plus points if a few small changes that could be made to the system.

  • The sectioning of the ticket and its layout makes it easier to go through the process and make it easier for both the user and the employees. All the benefits of the design are listed in the section above.

  • Integration of the ticket into the existing theatre system allows the security to be more careful towards trickery and also easier for customers to enter and leave as they please while also making their experience in the theatre more modernized and convenient.


Individual prep work is important

I suggested that we all try to think individually without taking a look at each other's research and it worked out a lot better since everyone was able to identify a few different points that were not something the others had taken into consideration before the focused group.

Focusing the design utilize the problem

A problem in a design or system isn't necessarily something we need to avoid, it can be solved by focusing the design on the problem to utilize it creatively to make it the main feature of the redesign. (It may or may not work, its always a risk.)

Not everyone appreciates change

Making a major change in a design can be extremely risky and the reactions of the users can be mixed. When such a situation arises the designer must have certain features that justify the design and also attract the users.

(Things like digitization are a huge help to attract users to your design.)



Here are a few points that I found very helpful as a new experience and how they affected my growth as a designer.

This project was a great learning experience to understand how all the concepts of ergonomics work together to bring out the functionality of a product. I especially enjoyed developing my own concept as the pieces of the puzzle fit together perfectly when I utilized the anthropometric data and the visual ergonomic concepts together to try and bring an aspect of experience design into this simple activity to understand visual ergonomics.

When I presented my project to our professor and teaching assistants, their support and compliments really showed me the difference between simply applying design concepts and utilizing them in a good design. This experience was also one of the major events that lead me to realize my passion for user-based design and how it made me increase my enthusiasm and efforts in this assignment.

Like what you see?

Check out the next project.

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