How to Develop an App like Airbnb? Cost & Key Features

As the idea to travel places comes to your mind, what is the first thing you think about? Certainly, exciting, and incredible experience but at reasonable prices. Isn’t it? This affordability is the reason behind the ever-growing popularity of Airbnb: the one-stop destination for all travel lovers that allow them to discover renting prospects whether in terms of a small apartment or be it in a castle. With people being very keen on traveling, no wonder Airbnb and alike apps have become an impressive business idea. So, if you are wondering how you can use this idea to make your own profit, then you are in just the right place. Here we will be analyzing the business model and important features of Airbnb that sets it apart, so that you can make an app like Airbnb a similar yet unique platform. Let’s begin.

What Is Airbnb?

Now, first, let’s begin with Airbnb, which is an online marketplace for people where they can find out & book online extraordinary accommodations across the globe using their smartphones or tablets. These platforms connect people to amazing travel experiences that are pocket-friendly. It offers unique adventures for people as they can rent anything from a single room to an apartment, a suite, a yacht, a castle, or even a houseboat. Airbnb describes itself as this peer-to-peer online marketplace and home-stay networking enabling people to list/rent short-term stays/lodging in the residential properties. These are quite interesting solutions that make it easier for people to find a place that makes them feel comfortable and offers them a view that they like so that things are easier for them. Now, the accommodation cost obviously varies, however it is always decided by the owner of the selected property. Airbnb earns its revenue by charging a percentage of the service fees from the hosts and guests with each booking.

Airbnb’s headquarter is in San Francisco and it was founded in the year 2008 in August. The idea was originated by Joe Gebbia and Brian Chesky in 2007 when they failed to afford the rent for their apartment. It was then that they did their living room into this bed and breakfast for three guests & offer them homemade breakfast.


Thus, they started earning profits and begun working with the investors and ultimately become this global powerhouse of the short breaks. Today it has more than 3,000,000 logging listing in around 65000 cities & 191 countries, while lodging prices are being set by the host.

In case you are keen on improving your business too with a versatile utilization of this kind, then you can begin by creating a mobile app like Airbnb.

Create an mobile application that makes your extra property a source of income and offers the audience a place where they feel at home.  Having an interesting and aesthetically strong place to accommodate your clients is a great idea.

Read Also: How Much Does it Cost to Develop Ticket Booking App like Stubhub, Ticketmaster & SeatGeek?

Business Perspective: Aim to Offer a New Traveling Experience

When planning a similar platform, one must keep in mind the two main groups of their target audience, i.e. hosts & guests. Thinking about each of them will be your step successful step towards your project.

The hosts would bring on the application some super cool places that would make it easier for the guests to have a comfortable homestay without being worried about the local formalities. Along with this, they may find some guidance in the new city.

The guests would make sure that the places are taken care of well. Also, this is an interesting way to generate money from a dead investment. The guest would support the hosts to make money and keep the property maintained.


Airbnb has changed the way people saw their property. It doesn’t just offer interesting solutions but also a regular source of income in the tourist season. Sometimes people take these places for rents on a weekly and monthly basis making it a more convenient and credible source of income.

How Does Airbnb Work?

Airbnb works by booking hosts all across the world and to make an app like Airbnb, you must follow suit. Today, Airbnb is providing services in more than 190 nations, and by using this platform, people can’t just book a room but also rent their room or maybe house out. It functions simply where people simply need to register and filling up their profile. Then, they can explore various options in the place they want to visit and estimate how much does Airbnb app cost them, and then it can be rented out. Needless to say, the app has incredibly made people’s lives easier by making traveling super easy for them.

Market Statistics & Presence of Airbnb


Talking in global terms, today Airbnb has 60 million registered active users, approx. 500,000 guests stay/night booking via Airbnb, people have traveled around 10 billion miles to the Airbnb destinations, there are more than 700,000 hosts, with 2 million listings, and 192 nations and 57000 cities where Airbnb is active in while the estimated revenue is around $900 million.

Who are the probable competitors of Airbnb

Ever since the concept of Airbnb entered the market, several other businesses have introduced their own apps as well, hence the competition is pretty high and so are the chances of earning huge revenues. Today, Airbnb is not the sole platform that lists and books accommodations across the world. Here we have mentioned a few other firms that have made an app like Airbnb and have made their mark with their offerings. They are:

  • Roomorama: This is a safe service requiring users to confirm what their intentions behind sharing the houses with guests are. It cross-checks personal pictures, bills, and personal IDs for verification of people.
  • FlipKey: This big company is owned by the famous TripAdvisor. Does it have many users with the highest quality rates owing to the manual verification program by the website’s employees? It has around 5000 special deals going on daily for everyone.
  • HomeAway: With over one million global listings, HomeAway offers the same range of services and some other like their own insurance program, while also operating a few more regional sites in this horizon like VacationRentals, TravelMob, & VRBO. Thus, it is a big-time competitor of Airbnb. Besides, there are few more well-tried offerings in this arena and still, there is enough room for interesting concepts, services, and implementations. Hence, in every way, this is just a great time to build an Airbnb mobile app.

Features of App-like Airbnb

Finding the right set of features for an application is the most challenging task. We make it a point that the features that are integrated into your application are well designed and focus on a certain set of users. The more customized the application the easier to drive sales and earn money. Sounds like a plan? Well, it is!

Read Also: Travel Planner Mobile App Development Cost and Key Features

To start with, there will be three kinds of users in the system:

  • Front-end User: Customer & Host
  • Back-end User- Admin
Features of the User Panel:

  • Signup-Sign-in
  • Search
  • Booking category
  • Place Booking
  • Online Payment
  • Personalized Feeds
  • View Amenities
  • Filter/Advanced Search/
  • Refine Search
  • Add to Favorite
  • Manage Booking
  • Social Sharing
  • Refer & Earn
  • Message System
  • Content
  • Reminders
  • Coupon Cards
  • Gift Cards
  • Cancel Booking
  • Guidebook
  • Manage Profile
  • Manage Notification
  • Review
Features of the Host User Panel:

  • Home listing
  • Listing Approval
  • Manage Booking Request
  • Payment Setting
  • Transaction history










Features of the Admin Panel:

  • Login
  • Dashboard
  • Role-based dashboard
  • Manage Users
  • Manage Booking
  • Manage promotions & gift cards
  • Manage payment
  • Manage referral/invites
  • Real-time Reporting & analytics
  • Manage Booking request
  • Push Notifications
  • Manage Amenities






The Business Model of Airbnb Application


When talking about the business canvas of Airbnb then we need to remember it is interesting and has multiple elements to generate money. Our app development experts share here the basic elements that make it easier for them to develop an application that can easily be monetized.

Value Your Key Partners

The people who would be interacting with the application are to be cared for. The users, service providers, and the hosts. The feature set should take care of each of them.

Be a Part of Key Activities

Once you hire an on-demand mobile app development firm, you need to be a part of the development process. Some of the important things that are to be focused on when you decide to enter with Airbnb like application, all you need to do is

  • Take care of product development
  • Build host networks and manage hosts
  • Build travelers network

Right Technology Stack

Using the right technology stack is also an important thing that you need to focus on. When working on such applications one needs to take care of

  • Development team
  • Technology stack
  • Resources and Hosts



You need to decide if you want a native application that works either on android or iOS or do you want a hybrid one. Also, see if you want to have a web app or would continue only with the software.

These are just a few points that you need to focus on there are a lot more interesting things that are to be discussed that are mentioned below.

Advanced Features:

The additional features that you would need to integrate into your Airbnb-like app to make it amazing are:


Registration: Same as for most travel apps, here as well the user first needs to register via their email ID and phone number. Once the user has agreed to your terms & conditions, the registration process will be complete. The estimated time to develop this feature can be around 12 hours, so the cost would be somewhere $300.

User Profile: Here the user will require entering their personal information. However, as the app developer creates the app, he would need to build a platform to create two types of profiles, same as Airbnb: one for guests and the other for the host. Here the information such as email ID, phone number, user name, birth date, sex, residence address, and other crucial description need to be entered by the user. Once it’s has done, their profile would be created. User profile ID will allow you to keep a record of every customer of your and their favorite destination and tours, etc. Accordingly, you can send notifications for special offers. Integrating this feature in the app takes around 24 hours and the cost is approx $600.

Filters: Once the registration process is over, now the users can begin their search accordingly. Like, if a user is a tourist, then he can begin searching out for suitable accommodation in their desired city. They will come across hundreds of options to pick from as per their budget. However, in the case of a host, he can lend his house for rent or a lease for a certain period of time. Like, if someone is offering their house/villa for rent, then they must provide suitable details regarding it, like what kind of house is that information regarding rooms and whether it can be rented privately or the guests can share it. Then the price details will follow.

Read Also: Travel Planner Mobile App Development Cost and Key Features

The guests will also be needed to provide certain information like where they would like to spend their vacation, the room type they are looking for, check-in & check-out dates, the total number of people that accompany them. Additionally, one can filter search for more detailed information like offered amenities, bed types, neighboring places such as parks, markets, etc. guests will also be able to avail information regarding local restaurants, cuisines, languages, and a lot more. The estimated time & cost to develop this feature is 32 hours and $800 respectively.

Global Currency Support: While making payments, users should be at ease, hence it is best that you provide a currency converter API that would convert the payment value according to the chosen currency via Google currency API.

Reporting & Analytics: Real-time reporting is crucial, as it allows the admin to stay updated and analyze overall app summary, like completed bookings, active bookings, canceled booking with a time range, payments, reviews, registered users, etc.

Personalization: This functionality will enable the user to get specific results based on the following factors, like Location, Booking History & Booking behavior. There will be a need for API integration to fetch data.

Payment Gateway: To make an online payment for bookings, payment API needs to be integrated like WorldPay, Sagepay& PayPal.

Cloud Storage: This functionality allows the system to store the data on the cloud. This way, the system will be able to access & manage data from anywhere and anytime.

CRM Integration: This feature is used to enhance marketing via SMS & emails. Here the admin deals with user analytics, promotions, communication, and email templates.

Live Chat: For this, Live Chat API needs to be integrated like Zapier, Zopim & LiveChat, etc.

HTML Embed: This feature is great from the marketing point of view, as it allows the users to embed HTML of any of the list to the platform. Here, the system will show HTML code, which the user can copy & paste on another platform.

Multi-language support: This functionality enables the host to choose the desired language for listing.

Social Media API: This needs to be integrated into the system through which the user will be able to share the listing with their friends, as well as invite the user & host.

CMS Integration: This functionality is required to manage app content, both in the text as well as Image form. Thus, CMS integration is crucial for content management.


Room Details: Once the filter feature is integrated, next is providing a feature that provides details regarding different variants of room for the accommodation. Thus, when guests search for a specific room to meet their requirements, they will be presented with the best options. Usually, the guests pick rooms based on various criteria such as images shown, room view, ratings & reviews, room description, direction, location, tariff, and terms & conditions.

Tourist: Travel App Developed By Octal IT Solution

Also, the guests can check the details of the host of the particular property. They can know what can be the maximum stay period of that property, and services to be offered, and whether there will be any additional charges to avail those services. Developing this feature will be a lengthy process and hence it will take around 180 hours. The whole of development procedure in case of these specific features is divided into several categories with each of them taking their own time like for gridding it will require variants, room info, host profile, available dates, booking feature & much more. This will cost somewhere around $4500.

Read Also: AI Based Travel App Like Hopper

Translation Feature: This feature is really important for apps like Airbnb, as it will be helpful for tourists and guests to translate the whole information in a language they are convenient with. Here, the text will be sent to Google Translator, and then it will be translated into the language desired by the user. The integration of this feature will cost $200 and 8 hours to develop.

Incorporate Maps: With the help of maps, the guests will be able to locate that specific place of stay along with the filtration option. This would give them a rough idea regarding the neighboring location next to their house of the hotel. It takes 32 hours to implement these features and the cost would be approx. $800.

Back-end: This indeed is the most critical aspect of any app development and with it being linked with the server, it is very much the app’s backbone. No app can ever be complete without the development of the backend. However, app developers must be very cautious as well as patients, as this task is really time-consuming and painstaking. Its integration takes over 160 hours while it cost a whole of $4000. Also, ensure here that you take the help of third-party apps for room booking. This will make your app a whole lot better.


Guide: This component is associated with the map and it will start functioning as a user chooses to stay in a location. Then the feature guides the user regarding sightseeing & other must-visit spots. It will take 10 hours to develop this feature at $250.

Messaging: This functionality is crucial to reach your targeted audience from time to time to communicate important matters. SMS via messenger or push notifications can be sent to the users for instant communication. On average, it takes 80-100 hours and $2500 to develop this functionality.

Feature for Hosts: This functionality will allow the hosts to lease or rent out their place for the stay, at the price they want to charge. They simply require giving commission to the firm for each booking. They just have to make an account and provide their details. Roughly, it will take 80 hours and $2000 to develop this feature.

Add to favorites: This section is quite crucial as it allows you to know the response for your app from the target audience. Here, the user can choose their favorite place/ hotel, and they can again search loo the same spot upon the next visit over there. It takes 6 hours and a cost of $150 to create this feature.

Friends Invitation: here, the user can invite his friends or family to join the mobile app. It takes 8 hours and $200 to develop this feature. Next, let’s understand how you can earn money through this app.

Monetization Model for an app like Airbnb Well, in the case of Airbnb, it makes money in a direct manner: It charges its users. It charges a fee to guests and hosts alike. Now the guest fee range from 6-12%, as per the size of the reservation subtotal. So, the higher the subtotal, the small is the reservation fee percent, and that is non-refundable upon cancellation. For hosts, Airbnb charges a 3% host service fee.

How much does Development cost to create app like Airbnb

Well, the development cost depends on a number of factors, such as:

  • Choice of Platforms (Android or iOS, or both)
  • Number of persons employed in the project (Project manager, UX/UI Designer, QA Analyst, Apple or Android Developer)
  • Region of the App Development Company (Airbnb app cost is lesser in Asian countries)
  • The technical complexity of Features & App Testing

Once, all of the above factors are considered, an app with basic features may cost $25000-$30000, while an app with advanced features and working on both iOS and Android platforms, the cost will be $40000.

Wrapping It Up!

If you want to develop an application that stands with the Airbnb competition then you have already delayed. There are a lot of solutions similar but there are few loops that can be integrated with your solution to make it stand a few steps ahead of your work.



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