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UX Writing Challenge Day One: Airline Cancellation Message

Day one of the UX writing challenge kicks off today. I know it was coming, but getting the kickoff email was an exciting arrival. Let’s dive right in.

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 cancellation and what they need to do next.

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

UX Challenge Solution

Hi Stuart. Bad news, your flight has been canceled because of poor weather.


We’d like to make things as comfy as possible. The airline has found a flight that leaves in 2 hours. We’ve also been able to secure access to their lounge for the inconvenience (think hot coffee and snacks).


Swing by gate 42 or respond to this email if you have any questions.

UX Challenge Scenario Reflection

I tried to approach this challenge with a hopeful and satisfying outcome. I know realistically a quick reschedule and lounge access might not be possible, but as a human on the other end of a disappointing message, I’d love an actual human response and not some canned junk message.

It was challenging to keep the body message within the character limit. I found myself editing out unnecessary sentences and words but, the refined body copy started to look a bit generic and was missing some of the personality that made the message personable, so I compromised a bit.

I also tried to give the disappointed reader an option to immediately connect with an actual person at the gate, or just reply to the email if they felt more comfortable with that route.

This was a fun start to the fourteen-day challenge. Looking forward tomorrows exercise.

UX Challenge Scenario Mockup