FirstGroup Glasgow Have Devised A Fiendish Route Finder Game


I live in Glasgow and usually commute to work by bike. It takes me around ten minutes. But my bike is broken and getting fixed so I have to get a bus.

But I want to know what routes I can get.

FirstGroup Glasgow provide the buses so I went to their website to find out. They have a page that lists some network maps: a City Center Bus Stops Guide, a City Center Map and a Glasgow Network Map.

The one that looks most promising is the Glasgow Network Map 2015 (lower right):fg2

And clicking it yields this map:


Cool! So I live roughly where the blue splodge is and I see I can get numbers 2,3,17,77,4,6 etc as they all pass reasonably close. But I don’t know where they go in the city center so getting back is going to be harder if I don’t know where to get the bus from! Luckily there appears to be a high fidelity map that I presume will list city center routes in more detail!

Clicking on the City Center map yields:


I have no idea what’s going on here; there are a bunch of letters that bear no resemblance to the routes in the previous map. I am well confused bruv!

I note that there is also a map called City Center Bus Stops Guide. This yields:


A hahahah HAHAHAAA! It’s a cunning game! I have to match up the bus number to the bus stop letters! Cool, Where can I get a 2 from?? TC, TE, VG…


Right, I’ve totally forgotten which stops. Um, what about a 3?


OH, HE HJ, what, hmmm, OK, I think I remember…


Erm, what about a 17?


Oh 17 doesn’t seem to be there! HAHa lol such amaze!

I also love how the colours of the routes have now been ditched in favour of some arbitrary colour scheme!

Oh, hang on it’s not arbitrary:


Oh do fuck off.

Good UX relies on a few things: reducing memory load, speaking the users language and being consistent. And this case study brilliantly illustrates what happens when you have don’t follow these simple rules.

Anyway, I’d love to hear your thoughts and if you work for Firstgroup I’d love to hear them even more!

I’m on Twitter FYI


The journey planner is knackered too!


It forgets the localisation (can’t find Glasgow Central; can find Acton Central FFS)


It’s as if this place has never gone near a user testing lab or QA. This is basic stuff guys, come on.



2 thoughts on “FirstGroup Glasgow Have Devised A Fiendish Route Finder Game

  1. Haha… FirstGrope. Yeah.. weird site. I tried to make sense of their Portsmouth buses. Just simple question like “How much are the tickets”. I don’t live there… just going to a Festival in Southsea so wanted to have the cash in my pocket and not install some SmartPhone app (my Luddite Blackberry don’t support their app anyway). Nope. Still no idea of the cost…

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