Randy Krum infographic designerRandy Krum

President of InfoNewt.
Data Visualization, Infographic Design, Visual Thinking, Product Development and Marketing professional fascinated by good infographics.  Always looking for better ways to get the point across.

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Entries in travel (61)


Airlines: The Future of Loyalty is Social


SimpliFlying has done some great research on how frequent travelers use social media.  The Future of Loyalty is Social infographic summarizes some of the key findings from the research.

To dig deeper, we partnered with Cranfield University in the UK to conduct a study on how frequent travelers (who travel at least five times a year) use social media. And here are some highlights of what we found:

  1. There are more airlines on Twitter than there are airlines with frequent flyer programs (191 vs 179)
  2. Almost 90% of frequent flyers use Facebook regularly, and over 65% “Like” at least one airline on Facebook
  3. To frequent fliers cheapest fare is the least significant loyalty factor among customer service, earning loyalty points and onboard experience
  4. 72% of frequent fliers would join a social loyalty program
  5. Over 65% of frequent fliers would like to earn social loyalty points via check-ins or by contributing ideas to an airline’s Facebook page.
  6. Over 80% of frequent fliers would like to earn social loyalty points by recommending the airline to a friend or providing positive feedback.

In the infographic below, we have summarized the findings of the study, and will soon release a detailed presentation of these findings too. Special thanks to Gavin Tan and Prof. Keith Mason from Cranfield University for their tremendous help with this study.


The simple, isotype-style illustrations are immediately recognizable since they are so similar to the figures used in airports and airline signage.  I think the Frequent Flier Participation Ladder is some fantastic data, and should have been more prominent in the design.

A handful of things I would have changed about the design:

  • The initial visualization of social sites should have been in descending order.  It’s almost there except for Twitter listed first.
  • The Twitter factoid ‘Frequent fliers “following” their favorite airlines on Twitter are steadily increasing’ is not supported by the visual showing how many airlines are followed by frequent fliers.  The statement claims a change over time.
  • The benefit percentages are shown on an odd shape of 10 squares.  Is that supposed to be an airline seat?  Hard for the reader to visually grasp the percentage since it isn’t a simple square shape.  A grid of 100 squares would have worked better.
  • The doughnut percentages are sorted in descending order, so the colors are in a different order in each doughnut.  Very hard to interpret.  The orders should have stayed consistent from Very Strong to Not at all in each doughnut.  Doughnuts are also hard to compare with each other visually.

Some great research data, and an infographic was a great way to publicize it.  They were very thankful to the professors at Cranfield University for their help with the research, but I wish they had credited a designer.  Was this done by someone inside SimpliFlying?

Found on MediaBistro


Client Infographic: The Hotel Price Index

Hotels.com The Hotel Price Index infographic

Twice-a-year, Hotels.com updates their Hotel Price Index, and this year I was contacted to design some new infographics to go along with the report.  InfoNewt worked with designer Jeremy Yingling to create two infographics for the current set of data from the first half of 2011.  Since the research is global, we created one infographic based on American travelers and one based on Canadian travellers.

The hotels.com® Hotel Price Index™ (HPI™) is a regular survey of hotel prices in major city destinations across the world. The HPI is based on bookings made on hotels.com and prices shown are those actually paid by customers (rather than advertised rates) for the first half of 2011. The report largely compares prices paid in 2010 with prices paid in 2011.

The research is extensive, so we had to keep the information shared in the infographics fairly focused on only a few categories.  This keeps the design clean and easy to read, but also whets the reader’s appetite for more.

We varied the visual designs for each category.  The monument silhouettes attached to locations on the globe was a unique way to show map data and not look like a standard map.  The silhouettes also help the reader recognize the cities faster than reading the text.  It’s subtle, but the lines are color-coded by continent as well.

The Canadian data was a little bit different, so the design had to adapt:

Hotels.com The Hotel Price Index Canadian infographic

You can see the complete report data on The Hotels.com Hotel Price Index page.


Time Travel in Popular Movies and TV infographic

I couldn’t believe that I hadn’t posted this one by David McCandless from InformationIsBeautiful.net.  Timelines: Time Travel in Popular Film and TV is one of my favorites, and you can tell how much effort went into the design and getting the details right.

Here’s a visualisation of time travel plots in various films and TV programs. I had a lot of fun doing this!

This is a straight data visualisation, rather than information design. That is, it’s not particularly useful, nor useable, nor meaningful. The inspiration was the coolness of the idea, really. I was excited to see what shape all the plots would make, and whether it could be shaped into something beautiful.

What I really love about this image, though, is the idea that this information has never been seen before. Despite the fact that it exists, in some way,somewhere, wrapped in various plots, it’s never been given form. I have to say, it was a joy to untangle it all :)

David, I would love to help design one for Dr. Who!



Follow the Money - infographic video

Follow the Money” is a video summarizing the results from the project by Northwestern University grad students Daniel Grady and Christian Thiemann.  Using data from the website Where’s George?, they have been able to track the movement of U.S. paper currency.  What can you learn from this?  That there are natural borders within the U.S. that don’t necessarily follow state borders, and it can also be used to predict the spread of disease because it maps movement of people within the U.S.

From Maria Popova on BrainPickings.org: This may sound like dry statistical uninterestingness, but the video visualization of the results is rather eye-opening, revealing how money — not state borders, not political maps, not ethnic clusters — is the real cartographer drawing our cultural geography.  The project was a winner at the 2009 Visualization Challenge sponsored by the National Science Foundation and AAA.


From Manuel Lima on VisualComplexity.com: Some places, such as Los Angeles, California, have many bills passing through it from across the nation, while others, such as Anderson County in Tennessee - Grady’s home - have bills circulating mainly within a more local neighborhood. Shown here are images from the video.  The data from the Where’s George? project is in fact so pertinent that is also being used by researchers to predict the spread of flu across the United States.

You can see the Northwest project site, which has a much more adademic title “Community Structure in Multi-Scale Transportation Networks”.

Rendered using Processing 1.0.6.  Found on VisualizingEconomics.com, VisualComplexity.com and Maria Popova has a good article on BrainPickings.org.


City Population Shift Maps

These Day-Night maps are from a Time Magazine November 2007 interactive map feature called One Day in America.  Other cities highlighted are Dallas, San Francisco, Seattle, Boston, Chicago and more.  The feature also included histogram map of traffic delays.  

The maps were created by Joe Lertola, who has some other great stuff posted on his website.

Thanks to justinpobrien for sending me the link in the comments.


50 Years of Space Exploration - Visual Flight Map

National Geographic published this amazing flight map that shows the flight paths of all 200 space missions in the last 50 years.  A zoomable map is on the NG website, and a high-res image is available from Adam Crowe on Flickr.

Art by Sean McNaughton, National Geographic Staff, Samuel Velasco, 5W Infographics.

Found on Fast Company.


Why are Cheap Airlines so cheap? (infographic)

From 5WGraphics.com, a good side-by-side infographic comparison of why the cheap airlines can actually operate with lower fares to passengers. The cost comparison is in Euros, but those of us in America should be able to figure it out.


Cape Hatteras Lighthouse: The Move of the Millenium

Found on MagaMaps.com, I like the multiple elements included in this infographic.  Plus, I remember this lighthouse, and I can't believe they actually moved it!


A Century of Driving in America

From Good Magazine,  an infographic resembling a board game but in reality is a timeline.  Credits list Coleen Corcoran and Joe Prichard.

Thanks Alwyn for sending in the link!


Taking the Train

It's not a complicated one, but I like Good Magazine's summary of the biggest train systems in the world (top 5 U.S. cities and top 5 foreign cities).  The silhouettes represent the daily rides in the city, and the length of the train shows how many miles that system covers.  To the right is a quick map of each city's subway system and some statistics about their subway system.

Thanks Li, for sending in the link!