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How Much Does It Cost To Create An App Like Airbnb: Its Process, Features & Monetization Model

  • By Hidden Brains
  • September 11, 2023
cost to create an app like airbnb

How much does it cost to create an app like Airbnb?

The rough estimation of the cost to create an app like Airbnb is ranging from $15,000 to $20,000 for each platform with the basic features. The mid-level to advanced version of the app will cost between $20,000 to $50,000. 

But with many travel booking websites and apps available in the market, businesses must be wondering what is so special about Airbnb. 

What is Airbnb and How does it work?

Airbnb is a popular and convenient accommodation booking app that allows people to easily find well-equipped guest houses, properties, and villas at affordable prices. With a few taps on a smartphone, travelers can find out comfortable homestays and able to compare prices. On the other hand, it provides the opportunity for property owners to rent out their property with the bed and breakfast facility and start earning. 

The concept of Airbnb has set the online travel industry on fire and has taken a central stage when it comes to booking a property.

Knowing all this concept isn’t enough for a business to get straight to hire software development company in the UK to kick start the process. Let’s check out the important statistics related to Airbnb.

Key Statistics for Airbnb in 2022:

Cost To Create An App Like Airbnb

Image Source: backlink

These statistics are enough for aspiring businesses to understand how Airbnb is rising and appears to be a promising investment opportunity. If you are considering developing an app similar to Airbnb, continue reading as we delve into various aspects of travel app development and understand how much it costs to create an app like Airbnb.

In the realm of travel apps, Airbnb stands out as a shining example. So to begin, we will explore Airbnb and gain insights into how it operates. So, let’s get started to know the real costs to create an app like Airbnb and the factors that affect the app development cost.

How Does Airbnb Work: Understanding the Features and Core Steps to its Mechanism

Airbnb operates to cater to two different user groups: hosts, who provide accommodation services, and guests, who seek lodging. As a result, the app offers distinct functionalities tailored to each user category. Here’s an overview of how Airbnb works for both hosts and guests:

Cost To Create An App Like Airbnb

Image Source: devtechnosys

1. How Does Airbnb Work For Hosts?

Here are the key steps and core features to follow while creating an app like Airbnb for a host panel.

  • Registration: Hosts sign up on Airbnb using their phone numbers, email addresses, or social media accounts.
  • Profile Creation: They create comprehensive profiles by inputting personal information and details about their accommodations.
  • Accommodation Details: Hosts specify vital information like the location, accommodation type, available amenities, guest capacity, and allowable stay duration. You can hire a mobile app development company in the UK to make this feature work smoothly.
  • Photo Upload: High-quality images of their property are uploaded to give potential guests a clear view, and they set pricing.
  • Communication: Hosts stay in direct online contact with guests, promptly responding to booking requests.
  • Payment: Hosts receive payments within 24 hours after the guest’s check-in.
  • Insurance: Airbnb offers liability insurance and damage protection coverage to hosts at no cost, providing peace of mind against potential damages.

The average cost to create an app like Airbnb for the host panel, then it is ranging between $12,000 to $15,000. If you are ready to customize your Airbnb app but not sure what features you can integrate into the app, then you can read more about hiring an app developer in the UK.

2. How Does Airbnb Work For Guests?

Let’s have a look at the basic features and steps to create an app like Airbnb for guests panel:

Cost To Create An App Like Airbnb
  • Registration: Guests register and log in to Airbnb using their phone numbers, email addresses, or social media accounts.
  • Profile Creation: They create personal profiles after authorization.
  • Booking Preferences: Guests specify their desired location, planned stay duration, and potential flexibility for extended stays.
  • Guest Count: The number of guests, including adults, children, the elderly, or pets, is indicated.
  • Property Search: Guests can search directly or apply filters to find properties that match their preferences within their budget.
  • Property Selection: Accommodations are displayed on a map with pricing details, followed by a list of available options.
  • Detailed Information: Clicking on a property reveals comprehensive details such as address, images, host contact information, reviews from past guests, and more.
  • Booking Request: Guests can request booking services and receive confirmation through push notifications or SMS.
  • Payment: After receiving booking confirmation, guests make payments through their preferred payment methods.
  • Arrival: Guests arrive at the scheduled location on the specified date to begin their stay.

The average cost to create an app like Airbnb for guests panel will take around $14,000 to $17,000 but the cost can be lower and higher depending on the complexity of the app. 

Airbnb Features and Their Cost Breakdown in Detail

Since the app’s features are the biggest budget holder, therefore, it makes sense to get into the details of each feature that is required at the Guest and Host panel along with the cost estimation.

Cost To Create An App Like Airbnb

Image Source: hiddenbrains.co.uk

These are the rough estimations, so before you make any decision, make sure you hire mobile app developers in the UK to get the right estimation as per your business requirements.

What’s the Business Model For An App Like Airbnb?

Airbnb is one of the most demanding online marketplaces that seamlessly connects property owners or property hosts with guests. So the entire business model is running on the commission-fee model where it charges hosts a percentage of the booking fee and guests as a service fee for the platform.

Cost To Create An App Like Airbnb

Image Source: apptunix

Apart, here are the key components that contributed to Airbnb’s business model:

1. Value Proposition

Airbnb’s core value proposition is twofold:

  • Offering travelers unique and cost-effective lodging options.
  • Providing hosts with the opportunity to generate extra income by renting their properties.

2. Revenue Streams

Airbnb’s primary sources of revenue are as follows:

  • Charging hosts a commission fee, typically around 3% for self-managed listings and up to 15% for those needing additional support.
  • Charging guests a service fee, typically ranging from 5% to 15% of the booking total.

3. Customer Segments

Airbnb focuses on two primary customer segments:

  • Hosts, who can be individuals or businesses with properties available for short-term rentals.
  • Guests, including individuals or groups seeking temporary accommodations.

4. Key Activities

Airbnb’s core operational activities encompass

  • Platform management and feature maintenance.
  • Ensuring trust and safety for both hosts and guests.
  • Conducting marketing and promotional initiatives.
  • Providing customer support services to enhance user experience.

5. Key Resources

Airbnb relies on several pivotal resources, including

  • A robust technology infrastructure to support its online platform.
  • A recognized and trusted brand within the sharing economy.
  • A vibrant community of hosts and guests contributes to the platform’s success.

6. Key Partnerships

Airbnb collaborates with various strategic partners, such as:

  • Property management companies and individual property managers to expand their property listings.
  • Destination marketing organizations to promote tourist destinations.
  • Payment service providers facilitate secure transactions and payment processing, thereby enhancing the platform’s functionality and expanding its reach.

Airbnb has a wide ray of streams that help you make money. So are you all set to know how to create an app like Airbnb but not sure how much it costs to create an app like Airbnb?

If yes, then you can hire Android app developers in the UK to know how much it will cost to build an app like Airbnb for each native platform…

What Are Things To Consider While Creating an App Like Airbnb?

Airbnb was established in 2007 with the basic idea to offer Bed and Breakfast with the rented house service. But year after year, this platform has transformed its functionality by constantly working on the below factors. So if you also want to create an app like Airbnb, then keep these points in mind.

Make your policies clear and genuine!

Trust and safety are paramount concerns for everyone involved. Implementing robust measures to ensure the safety and security of both parties is of utmost importance. This includes conducting background checks, establishing secure payment systems, and providing clear policies for cancellations, refunds, and damages.

Property navigation is important!

Navigating the regulatory landscape is key, as Airbnb has encountered regulatory challenges in various markets. Staying informed about local laws and regulations and ensuring platform compliance is essential to long-term success.

Seamless UI/UX of the app!

The foundation of Airbnb’s success lies in its user-friendly platform and its unwavering commitment to user experience. It’s crucial to invest in a platform that is intuitive, easy to navigate, and offers a seamless experience for both hosts and guests.

Promote your online travel booking app rightly!

Effective marketing and promotion are also critical. Airbnb’s triumph can be attributed, in part, to its savvy marketing strategies. Investing in marketing efforts is vital to draw hosts and guests to your platform and build a strong and recognizable brand identity.

Pay attention to customer support and make them available 24*7!

Exceptional customer support is the cornerstone of success. It involves delivering timely and helpful responses to inquiries, swiftly resolving issues, and equipping hosts and guests with the resources and tools they need to make the most of their experience on the platform.

By carefully considering these factors, you can craft a thriving platform that offers value to hosts and guests, ensuring sustainability and long-term profitability. 

Also Read: Developing a Travel App: Its Cost, Features, and Monotizing Model.

How To Create an App Like Airbnb and Its Cost at Each Phase?

Creating an app like Airbnb involves several essential steps to ensure its success:

Cost To Create An App Like Airbnb

Step 1: Create a Business Plan

If you are curious to know how to build an app like Airbnb, then start by outlining your app’s concept, target audience, revenue model, and competitive analysis. Define your unique value proposition and establish a clear business strategy.

Image Source: spaceotechnologies

This step’s cost is relatively low and mainly involves research and documentation. Usually, it is estimated to cost from $2,000 – $5,000, But when you hire top leading software development companies in the UK like Hidden Brains UK, you can expect these services under the budget of the project. 

Step 2: Partner With the Right App Developers

To build an app like Airbnb, you need to find a reliable app development team or agency with experience in creating travel and tourism apps. To make your project go flawlessly, it is always recommended to hire a dedicated team that consists of a business analyst, project manager, backend/frontend developer, UI/UX developer, and quality assurance engineer. 

The average cost to hire developers in the UK varies based on location, complexity, and team size. For a high-quality app, expect to invest between $10,000 and $15,000.

Step 3: Build a User-Friendly Design

Create an intuitive and visually appealing user interface (UI) and user experience (UX) design. Prioritize easy navigation and seamless interactions. When it comes to determining the cost of creating an app like Airbnb, you can expect to pay $15 to $25 hourly cost to a UI/UX designer. The total cost will depend on the number of screens you develop for an app.

Step 4: Integrate the Right Features

How to build an app like Airbnb? Well, the features you consider integrating into the app will be the biggest part of this question. Implement key features such as user profiles, property listings, search functionality, booking and payment systems, reviews, messaging, and support.

Feature development accounts for the majority of the budget so it is always worth starting with an MVP app solution with the basic features. The cost to create an app like Airbnb will fall between $10,000 to $15,000. 

But if you are an entrepreneur and looking to create a feature-rich app like Airbnb, then the cost to create an app like Airbnb with advanced features will take around $20,000 to $25,000+, depending upon the complexity of the app.

Step 5: Test the App

Conduct rigorous testing to identify and fix bugs, usability issues, and security vulnerabilities. Ensure the app functions smoothly on various devices and platforms.

Testing typically accounts for 10-15% of the total development budget, approximately $5,000 to $10,000.

Step 6: Release the App and Maintain It

Launch the app on app stores and start marketing it. After the launch, continue to maintain and update the app to improve performance, security, and user experience. Ongoing maintenance costs can vary widely but maybe around 20-25% annually of the initial development cost to create an app like Airbnb. App maintenance is an ongoing process and should continue indefinitely.

In a nutshell, these estimates can vary significantly based on factors like app complexity, geographic location, and the specific features you want to include. It’s essential to conduct a detailed project assessment and work closely with your development team to get precise cost and timeline estimates.

How To Market Your Travel App Like Airbnb For Your Startup?

Now you have all the information about how to create an app like Airbnb and how much it costs to build an app like Airbnb. But how to succeed in this thriving market?

To successfully market a travel startup similar to Airbnb, consider these effective strategies:

Leverage Social Media:

Utilize various social media platforms to promote your travel app. Engage with your audience through compelling content, visuals, and interactive posts.

Harness User-Generated Content:

Encourage users to generate and share content related to their experiences with your app. User-generated content, such as reviews, photos, and travel stories, can be powerful in building trust and attracting new users.

Emphasize Customer Reviews:

Highlight positive customer reviews and testimonials to build credibility. Showcase real-life experiences and recommendations from satisfied users to attract potential travelers.

By implementing these strategies, you can boost the visibility and popularity of your travel startup, similar to Airbnb.

Are you confused about which platform you should choose to launch your travel app first? Read more about Nаtive vs Hybrid vs Crоss Plаtfоrm Whаt tо Chооse in 2023?

How Much Does It Cost to Create an App Like Airbnb?

The cost of building an app like Airbnb is influenced by various factors, and it’s essential to consider several key aspects during the planning stage:

  • Size of the Development Team: The composition of your development team can impact costs. If you take on project management and closely oversee the process, you can keep the team relatively small. However, for a comprehensive project, you may need developers, designers, a project manager, a system administrator, and other key roles.
  • Number of Platforms: Deciding on the platforms (iOS, Android, or both) can affect the development effort and cost. Developing for Android typically takes 20% to 30% more time than iOS, so consider your target audience and their preferred device environment.
  • Technical Complexity: The complexity of the features you want in your app plays a significant role in determining the cost. Features can range from simple to medium to high complexity, with more complex features requiring additional development time.
  • Design: Custom vs. Standard design is another factor to consider. Opting for a unique and custom design can impact costs compared to using standard design elements.

Considering all these factors if it comes to concluding the cost of developing a basic Airbnb-like app with simple features and minimal design typically ranges from $25,000 to $35,000, with an estimated timeline of around 4 months. 

However, when it comes to more advanced features and a robust tech stack, the cost can vary significantly based on the complexity of the functionalities. Skilled developers and specialists may be required, leading to a longer development timeline and an expanded budget.

For a breakdown of the estimated costs for Airbnb-like app development on different platforms:

  • Web Development: $20,000+
  • Android App Development: $25,000+
  • iOS App Development: $30,000+

The cost of building the app for various platforms depends on several variables that influence development expenses. It’s important to note that these estimates are based on factors such as the time required by development teams and the hourly rates of different companies. 

Actual costs may vary based on specific project requirements and development resources. So its better to book a demo with experts and get the rough estimates.

How To Monetize Your Vacation Booking App Like Airbnb?

Here are the key monetization opportunities offered by vacation rental mobile apps:

  • Commissions from Hosts: Earn a 3% service fee for each completed booking, along with a non-refundable service fee from guests (6% to 12%).
  • Transaction Fee from Travelers: Charge a fee on traveler transactions when they book accommodations through the app.
  • Property Listing Fee: Generate revenue by charging property owners for listing multiple properties on the app.
  • Advertisement Sales: Earn revenue by publishing advertisements from other brands within the app.
  • Property Verification Fee: Acquire a fee for property owners to verify their property ownership.
  • Property Photography Fee: Offer professional property photography services for a fee to enhance property listings.
  • Promoted Listings: Allow hosts to boost their property listings through sponsored listings for a fee.

These are the few major monetizing strategies that you can consider to make money from your online travel app like Airbnb. However, the choice of monetizing strategy will depend upon the type of app you are considering building.


Travel today offers unprecedented convenience with a plethora of options for accommodations, transportation, and amenities. To future-proof your business, consider hiring a software development company in the UK to start building an online venture like Airbnb, enhanced with innovative features to cater to both hosts and travelers. 

Added to that, Hidden Brains UK, a leading mobile app development company, can be your trusted app development partner who guide you in the right direction. Contact us for a consultation on creating a unique vacation rental app like Airbnb.


What is the cost range for developing an app like Airbnb?

The cost of developing an app like Airbnb can vary widely depending on factors like features, complexity, platform choice, and location of development. A basic version might start at around $15,000 to $25,000, while more advanced versions with extensive features can exceed $30,000+.

What are the key factors that influence the development cost of an Airbnb-like app?

Several factors impact development costs, including the app’s features, design complexity, choice of platforms (iOS, Android, web), geographic location of development teams, and ongoing maintenance needs.

How long does it take to develop an app like Airbnb?

The development timeline can range from a few months to over a year, depending on the app’s complexity and features. A basic version might take around 4-6 months, while a more advanced app could take 12 months or longer.

What are the legal considerations for creating an app like Airbnb?

Legal aspects include complying with local and international regulations related to short-term rentals and accommodations, ensuring data privacy, and obtaining necessary licenses and permits.

What are the benefits of creating an app like Airbnb for my business?

Developing an Airbnb-like app can open up new revenue streams, connect hosts with travelers, and offer a convenient platform for property rentals. It can also enhance user experience and brand recognition.

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