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How Much Does It Cost To Develop An App Like Airbnb?


#App Development
Mobile apps help business people to reach a wider audience market to improve sales and profits as it helps to book and shop things online through mobile platforms. With the help of mobile app technology, users can book a house or a hotel room in a preferred destination before they arrive at the place.

Starting 2008, Airbnb – an online marketplace, helps users to book rooms and hotels for tourism experiences. The company provides a platform for property owners and users in one place to make booking convenient. Users can install Airbnb app for accommodation to make a booking based on their preferences of cost, area, dates, duration of stay and required facilities. They can also check other users’ reviews to ensure their expectations meet the description and conditions provided by the property owners. Same way Airbnb looks after the property owners and ensures they receive payment for accommodation services in safe and timely manner.

Airbnb became a driving force for many companies to help users with booking hotels and homestays. Apps like Airbnb provide features for users’ registration and space available for profile set-up.  

Let us look at the Airbnb registration stages for customers who wish to book a room and property owners who wish to rent out.


Using a web platform or mobile app, customers need to register or log in as a guest. 

Then they fill in their profile and enter valid information about their ID, payment method and details as well as their photo. 

Using filter feature, the customers choose a place to stay based on their preference. 

They send a request for a stay and receive confirmation. 

Once the confirmation is received, the customers pay for accommodation upfront and they are good to go.


Using a web platform or mobile app, homeowners need to register or log in as a host and confirm they are over 18 years old.

Then the hosts can register their property and provide details of the location, size, type of property, number of guests etc. The host will provide real photos of the property. If the host does not have any photos of the property yet, Airbnb can offer professional photographer services.

Once the hosts receive a request from potential customers, they start communication process and discuss details of the stay, including special terms and conditions.

The hosts have the right to reject a request. If both parties are happy, the hosts confirm a request for a stay.

The hosts receive payment within 24 hours upon the guests check in.

How does an app like Airbnb make money? Airbnb’ business model is booking fees. This means that customers pay 6-12% of the property cost for the duration of their stay depending on the size of booking. Additionally, hosts will pay Airbnb 3% for every transaction.

Airbnb services are available on a web platform, two mobile platforms (iOS and Android) and a smartwatch. This, of course, will influence the cost of developing an app, but it is a smart way to reach out to a wider audience. 

Let us look at the stages you need to consider when developing a travel app like Airbnb.

Write a business plan. Every great idea needs to be interpreted into numbers and strategies to make it work. Do not skip this stage, as it will contribute to your success greatly. 

Find developers. You will need a team of developers to implement your ideas and create a functional app. In-house or outsource – the choice is yours. However, if in doubt, read our article here.

Create user-friendly interface. It is very important for your app to be intuitive and convenient to use. This investment is crucial for your app to take off, so make sure you develop design that is friendly for the end user.

Add special features. Every app has a handful of standard features, but you need something to make your app stand out. Think about special features that will contribute to the users’ experience when using your app. This may be multiple payment options, multilingual feature, currency converter etc.

Run app testing. Before launching an app, make sure you had it tested and eliminated all possible bugs and errors for seamless work.

Release and maintenance. Once your app is up and running, remember to carry out regular maintenance and make updates for your app to stay relevant. 

All of the above will affect the overall cost of building an app like Airbnb.

There are key features that a travel app should have.

Key features for the customers: Registration, Login, Profile, Search, Favourites, Chats, Payment, Order.

Key features for the hosts: Accommodations, Requests, Notifications, GPS.

To build a travel app that is functional and user-friendly, you will need to add extras to the basic features.

To calculate the cost, let us have a look at the app developing man-hours.

Building an app starts with a preparation stage, which takes up to 50 hours. The preparation stage includes project’s setup, implementation of the application programming interface (API), database patterns as well as libraries and services.

Registration and login features, including terms and conditions, will take 10 to 16 hours to get built.

User profile (for both customers and hosts) will take about 16 hours.

Framework setting that include notifications, payment methods, currencies etc. will take up to 24 hours.

Filters feature that allows users choosing property based on location, cost, dates etc. will take about 24 hours.

Property description that includes search results and a detailed information about the property (photos, reviews, maps etc.) will take up to 150 hours.

Maps implementation to enable searching location within reach of tourist sites will take up to 24 hours.

Host sign-up that enables placing a property ad, communication and booking will take 100 to 120 hours.

Wish Lists or Favourites to add places to visit or favourite spots will take 10 to 12 hours.

Messenger that enables communicating and add sense of reliability to users will take up to 40 hours.

Invite friends feature to enable recommending an app to your friends will take about 10 hours.

All of these features on top of the front-end (what the users see) development require back-end (the system performance) development. This is by far the most time-consuming part and will count up to 600 hours. This is something you do not want to skip or cut costs, as it is crucial that your app performance is seamless.

The hourly rates of app developers vary from region to region and your final cost of building an app will depend on the team that you hire. Here is an approximate breakdown of the developers’ hourly rates that are available on the market based on the platform.

Here at Magnise we have a proven track record of building apps for various platforms. Our teams of professional developers have gained excellent reputation. Contact us and we will be delighted to help you implement your ideas into a successful app. Send Request.


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