I'm tinkering with a design for user to select a single country, or multiple countries that are historically/culturally grouped (eg United Kingdom).

Just looking for feedback, and wondering if anyone has seen something along these lines.

Dropdown 1: Region (whole world, Europe, Nth America, Sth America, SE Asia etc)

Drowdown 2: Country (all, then list of appropriate countries based on dropdown 1)

The user first selects a region (eg Europe) then an Country (eg Germany).

If Country=All, then the search results will return all countries in the selected region (or all countries if region=whole world).

Changing region changes the options in the Country list.

One issue I have is how to deal with regions like United Kingdom. Ignoring Brexit, the UK countries are also in the Europe region. One country being in multiple regions is not a problem. The problem is there are quite a few regions like this (UK, British Isles, Balkans, Caribbean etc). I can absolutely see users wanting to have results returned for "all countries in the UK".

Should I just have lots of regions? All world, continents (EU, Africa etc), then these special subsets (UK etc)? Or would you go All world, then Continents+SpecialRegions [sorted a-z]?

  • What exactly are "UK countries"? If you are referring to the commonwealth, I'm pretty sure that Indians, Canadians, Australians would select their continent, respectively, instead of UK. Generally speaking, you could associate every country to a continent and there you have your regions. Btw, even after Brexit, UK is still part of Europe, it's just not part of the EU anymore (and who knows when that happens) :) Nov 12, 2019 at 15:58

1 Answer 1


You are overcomplicating this and trying to change a mental model that is well established. The best practice when creating a country dropdown is to place the most common countries where your users are from on top, then list the rest of the countries alphabetically.

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