Paying for gasoline is antiquated, awkward, and a bad user experience. In addition to having to wait in line, users have to get out of their vehicles to interact with poorly designed interfaces.

We set out to redesign Costco’s gas payment process.

My role
  • Research
  • User Personas
  • Wireframes
  • UI Design
  • Prototyping
  • User Testing
Length of project

2 Weeks

Tools used
  • Photoshop
  • Illustrator
  • Flinto

Project Requirements

Costco app saves time by shortening wait times in line for gas at Costco Gas Stations. It allows the user to set gas and payment preferences, as well as daily gas purchase limits with their phone.

The RFID tag on the windshield of the car stores membership information and gets scanned as the vehicle approaches the pump.

The credit card info and preferences get stored in Costco’s database.

The new touch screen gas pump interface speeds up the process of the checkout. For those users that prefer not to use their phone for payments, the membership card scanning process is still in place.

The customer gets greeted with a personalized greeting based on their membership info scanned.

This improves the customer experience by reducing time spent in line and allows them to spend more time doing the things they enjoy.

To do so successfully, the following things were required of our team:

  • Conduct Costco members research
  • Create user survey and conduct user interviews
  • Create user personas based on research findings
  • Define the features of the app
  • Create task flows
  • Design app wireframes and gas pump UI
  • Conduct user testing to assess usability
  • Produce an app prototype and a payment process concept


I have researched Costco as a company, their philosophy, and who Costco members typically are. In addition, I’ve created a survey in an effort to not to miss something, as well as conducted user interviews.

Through the survey and the interviews I’ve learnt that the most favorite thing for Costco Gas customers was the great value and the least favorite thing was the long lines at the gas pump. Which seemed to be dependent on each other, since good value fuels the demand.

The users reported the need to scan two cards – the membership card and the credit card as annoying. We took that into consideration when we were designing the features for the app.

Based on survey results, it became evident that we wouldn’t able to solve the waiting in line problem, however, if we could shorten the wait — that would improve experience greatly for Costco members.


Based on the results of the research and the survey, I have created user personas. The majority of consumer Costco customers are middle to upper middle class females that are 35 y.o. and older.


Camille 46 y.o. female

She is married and has 2 kids. Their annual household income is over $85K. She is a stay at home mom, who loves the fact that Costco saves her money on gas, since she has to drive her kids around to various activities.

Henry 65 y.o. male

He is married and has 2 grandkids. He is retired with over $75K in annual household income. He lives a comfortable life, but appreciates good value that Costco provides.

Daniela 35 y.o. female

She is married. Her annual household income is $120K. Daniella is a mortgage broker and loves a good savings.

Payment Process

We thought about what would the payment process work and what it would look like? We came up with the following process: costco member could get an RFID for their car. It would only store their membership number. As the car would pull up to the pump, the membership info would get read by the scanner. The payment information would get accessed by the built-in computer within the pump itself. All of the technologies currently exist.

User Task Flows

We’ve analyzed the information in the survey and defined the features of the app, and built task flows based on the user feedback.


I’ve built wireframes based on survey feedback and the paper prototyping. Then I went through the round of user testing, recorded feedback and adjusted the designs based on that.

App Screens

After the second round of user testing we created the screen designs. The user interface was influenced by the Material Design Guidelines. I kept the screen design simple and easy to understand, so the even not very tech savvy person could carry out tasks with ease. As part of this project, we decided to do a small rebrand/ We wanted to update the logo slightly to emphasize the expediency. However, we wanted to avoid too drastic of an update, not to turn off the existing customers. Our team created an updated look for the logo and a chevron banner.

Gas Pump User Interface Screens

We came up with a new gas pump UI design as part of payment process redesign. Our users indicated that they perceive gas pump interface and the whole pumping process as unclean, and much preferred a touch screen display.

Gas Pump User Interface Prototype

I created this video to explain the interaction at the touch screen gas pump interface.

Phone App Prototype

I have created a prototype to illustrate interaction with the phone app.

What I've learned

During this project I’ve learnt that when working on a process redesign, it is important to actually go and assess the existing process on location. It helps in understanding user’s perspective.