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

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06 Nov 2019
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11 min
author avatar
Alyona Z.
Copywriter
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Stanislav K.
Business analyst

Gig economy becomes more popular. People tend to share their apartments for travelers and earn money. Airbnb is one of the most popular booking services in the world.

So, the questions arise — how to make an app like Airbnb and how much it will cost? We’ve prepared the full guide and discussed such issues as the Airbnb business model, required features, and the approximate cost of a mobile app (both iOS and Android) and web version of the service.

How Does Airbnb Work?

Airbnb has two types of users — guests and landlords.

It’s a complex service offering tons of functionality to the users. To build an app like Airbnb, you should understand the platform’s logic from the client’s point of view.

How Does Airbnb Work for Guests?

  • Step 1. The user goes to the service (mobile or web version) and registers or logs in as a guest.
  • Step 2. After that, they complete the profile. The user adds such necessary data as profile picture, ID number, and more.
  • Step 3. The client can choose the appropriate place to live in using various filters like price, location, type of space, and more.
  • Step 4. The guest requests for a stay and receives a confirmation.
  • Step 5. It’s required to pay for a reservation using the service.
  • Step 6. The final step is traveling and enjoying the stay!
Booking service design concept by Cleveroad

Booking service by Cleveroad

How Does Airbnb Work for Hosts?

  • Step 1. The user needs to register or log in as a host and confirm that they are over the age of 18.
  • Step 2. After that, it’s possible to register the property on Airbnb. The host can add the data about the accommodation like location, the number of guests, type of apartment, and more.
  • Step 3. The landlords need to upload real photos of their apartment and set the price. Airbnb offers to hire a qualified photographer to take professional pictures.
  • Step 4. When the guest requests a stay, a host can start a conversation and discuss all the details like quiet hours, clean standards, etc.
  • Step 5. If everything is fine, the host approves the stay. But the landlord also has an opportunity to reject the stay.
  • Step 6. The host receives the payment in 24 hours after the guest checks-in. The renter needs to confirm that your listing is as good as expected.

Airbnb Business Model

Airbnb service allows people with a spare apartment or house to earn extra money renting it. Using the platform, it’s possible to book a flat, house, or palace in various locations from all over the world.

There are applications for two leading mobile platforms (iOS and Android) and a web app. Airbnb even supports smartwatches. So, users can receive notifications faster and stay up-to-date about any changes.

The revenue model of Airbnb is booking fees.

  • The guest has to pay a 6-12% booking fee, depending on the size of the reservation.
  • Airbnb changes the landlord 3% for every transaction.
Airbnb business model

Airbnb business model canvas

Airbnb Results

  • Airbnb is the fourth downloadable app in Travel category in the App Store, according to SimilarWeb.
  • On average, more than 2 million guests stay on Airbnb every night.
  • Airbnb is expected to generate $1,26 billion in revenue in 2019, which means a 14,7% growth.
  • The service is available in 191 countries offering more than 7 million accommodations.
  • Airbnb has over 150 million active users from all over the world.

Steps to Make an App Like Airbnb

How to create an app like Airbnb? There are several vital steps that you need to follow to make your project successful and profitable.

  • Step 1. Create a business plan. It’s not enough to come up with an idea. You need to consider a business plan to follow your goals and stay organized.
  • Step 2. Find the developers. To create an Airbnb clone app, you need to cooperate with experienced development team. These days, there are two popular variants — in-house or outsource software developers.
  • Step 3. Build a user-friendly design. The Airbnb app interface is intuitive and easy-to-use. Users tend to abandon apps with unattractive design, so it’s better to take care of UI/UX design beforehand.
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  • Step 4. Integrate several features. It’s common to build an app like Airbnb starting with some basic features. The MVP version of the service allows getting some feedback from the users and understanding their needs. After that, it’s possible to add some advanced features to make your application unique.
  • Step 5. Test the app. Before launching, the application should be tested carefully to eliminate bugs and provide users with a great experience.
  • Step 6. Release the app and update it regularly. It’s necessary to regularly maintain the app and offer users with new and exciting features.
Steps to develop an app like Airbnb

How to make an app like Airbnb?

Airbnb App Features and Their Cost

How to build a platform like Airbnb? The service has a lot of features that need to be implemented during the development. Of course, app functionality affects the final cost.

Basic Airbnb features for the guest

Airbnb features for the guest

Let’s discuss them more precisely.

Registration

To start using the app like Airbnb, the client needs to sign up. The basic option is to provide users with email and password registration. Additionally, it’s necessary to create a ‘Term and Policy’ screen since users have to agree with the policy of use.

Login

After the registration, users need to log into the app easily. So, it’s better to provide them with several options like login with email, Google account, and Facebook. Each integration takes approximately 8 hours of development for one platform. Additionally, there should be such functions as ‘Forget password’ and ‘Log out’ to make an app like Airbnb user-friendly.

Search

This function is vital for any booking service. It’s better to provide an advanced search system at once. Users should have an opportunity to set dates of their trip and select the number of guests. After setting the date, users should see a list of suitable apartments with all the details like photos, descriptions, comments, and more.

Additionally, renters need to select the appropriate accommodation, check its availability, and send the booking request.

Favorites

This feature offers users to add places they like to the list. After that, they can find these accommodations faster.

Chats

After requesting a stay, the guest and host can start a conversation to discuss all the details. It’s common to provide opportunities to send a photo or video. Additionally, developers can add various statuses like typing, read, etc.

Profile

Airbnb app has two types of users — guests and hosts. Both of them need to have an opportunity to edit their profile and add required personal data like full name, age, sex, and so on.

Payments

How to make an app like Airbnb successful? It’s good to offer users various payment methods to make this process easy and secure. Also, there should be opportunities to add and remove credit cards.

Order

The last core feature of any booking service is requesting for a stay. The users choose the flat or house to stay in and can book it if the accommodation is available on the selected dates.

!

All the estimations provided below are based on the average rate in our region (Eastern Europe, Ukraine) — $50 per hour.

Airbnb core features for guests. Development time and cost
Feature Web development, hours iOS development, hours Android development, hours
Registration 19 h 13 h 13 h
Login 43 h 35 h 35 h
Search 158 h 122 h 122 h
Favorites 12 h 15 h 15 h
Chats 163 h 127 h 127 h
Profile 32 h 15 h 15 h
Payments 26 h 24 h 24 h
Order 58 h 38 h 38 h
Total time 511 h 389 h 389 h
Total price $25,550 $19,450 $19,450
Core Airbnb features for the host

Airbnb features for the host

Accommodations

How Airbnb works for hosts? The main feature for the landlord is the ability to create an ad about their accommodation. They need to describe all the details like set the apartment type, the number of guests, and more. Additionally, it’s required to allow uploading photos and videos and setting the price per night.

Design of a booking app by Cleveroad

Booking app design by Cleveroad

Requests

The owner needs to have a screen with all requests made by travelers. There is also an opportunity to accept and reject any request.

Notifications

This function is useful for any updates to make an app like Airbnb convenient. For instance, the guest made a request, and the owner can get an instant notification. Hosts can also be notified about unchecked requests, booking changes, and more.

GPS

Clients can look through the location where they want to stay in to find apartments, exciting sights, cafes, etc.

Airbnb basic features for hosts. Development time and cost
Feature Web development, hours iOS development, hours Android development, hours
Advertisements 168 h 153 h 153 h
Requests 30 h 16 h 16 h
Push notifications 24 h 14 h 14 h
GPS - 20 h 20 h
Total time 222 h 203 h 203 h
Total price $11,100 $10,150 $10,150

Such basic features can make your application user-friendly and convenient. Later, you can add various advanced features to make it stand out. For instance, there are such advanced Airbnb app features:

  • Airbnb Plus provides well-equipped and high-quality homes;
  • Superguest & Superhost;
  • Multiple language support;
  • Currency converter;
  • Etc.

Recently, Airbnb has introduced a new feature — Airbnb Experience. What does it mean? Locals from all over the world can offer various activities for travelers. For instance, they can show off the city or provide a food tour by bike, and so on.

How to Create an App Like Airbnb: Team and Technologies

Building web and mobile versions of an app like Airbnb require various specialists. We’ve listed the required team members below.

  • Business Analyst
  • Project Manager
  • UI/UX designer
  • 1 or 2 Android developers
  • 1 or 2 iOS developers
  • Back-end developers
  • Front-end developers
  • QA engineer

A lot of modern technologies can be used for building an app like Airbnb. If you want to make a mobile app, there are such programming languages as Swift (iOS) and Kotlin (Android). Considering web development, software engineers tend to use JavaScript.

?

How to choose the appropriate tech stack for your web project? We’ve revealed the necessary technologies and seven tips to help you.

To give you a hint, there is an Airbnb tech stack.

Technologies required to make an app like Airbnb

Airbnb tech stack

!

Note: Choosing the tech stack for your Airbnb-like app, you need to consult with professionals. The final toolset always depends on your technical needs and project requirements.

Additional Expenses to Make an App Like Airbnb

How much does Airbnb app cost? Besides the features, several factors can completely change the final price. The essential ones are design, admin panel, platforms, and location.

Design

We’ve already mentioned that design is significant for your application success. Creating a great UI/UX design tends to take a lot of money and time. For instance, the Airbnb app UI completely satisfies the needs and expectations of users since it’s infinitive.

Airbnb design
Feature Web, hours iOS, hours Android, hours
Design 140 h 150 h 120 h
Price $7,000 $7,500 $6,000

Admin Panel

To get full control under your booking business, you need to create an admin panel. It gives access to all registered users (hosts and guests), allows managing users and accommodations, and more.

If you create an app like Airbnb for two mobile platforms, you need only one admin panel that will work in the web version. To develop a basic admin panel, software engineers need approximately 225 hours.

Platforms

Speaking about mobile platforms, Android and iOS are the most widespread these days. So, which one to choose? The answer is simple — you need apps for both platforms to gain more users.

If you have a lack of budget, you can start with an application for one platform. You can analyze your target audience and users’ preferences to select the platform.

Curiously, iOS development usually requires 20% less time comparing to Android. It happens since there are a lot of various screen resolutions and OS versions of Android devices.

Location of Your Development Team

How to build an app like Airbnb? It becomes more and more widespread to cooperate with outsourcing companies. Such vendors tend to provide more affordable hourly rates along with the high quality of the product. So, you’re welcome to choose the country with the appropriate price.

For instance, developers from North America tend to have higher rates in comparison to software builders from Europe. Additionally, software developers from Eastern Europe (e.g. Ukraine) have gained a good reputation and clients’ trust.

Software developers rates
Region Web developer rates iOS developer rates Android developers rates
North America $130 - $150 $110 - $250 $150 - $170
Western Europe $60 - $75 $37 - $175 $70
Eastern Europe $25 - $50 $23 - $80 $35 - $50
Australia $100 - $110 $35 - $150 $110

How Much Does It Cost to Make an App Like Airbnb? [Final Estimate]

Considering all the factors mentioned in the article, the final cost to build an app like Airbnb can reach approximately $65,650 for a mobile app (one platform) and $92,350 for a web version.

Let’s look through details.

How much does it cost to create an app like Airbnb?
Type of work Web development iOS development Android development
Features for guests 511 hours 389 hours 389 hours
Features for hosts 222 hours 203 hours 203 hours
Admin panel (one for all platforms) 225 hours - -
Frameworks and libraries integration 65 hours 58 hours 61 hours
UI/UX design 140 hours 150 hours 120 hours
Quality assurance 456 hours 342 hours 342 hours
Project management 228 hours 171 hours 171 hours
Total time 1,847 hours 1,313 hours 1,286 hours
Total price $92,350 $65,650 $64,500
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Our Business Analyst will make a custom estimation of your project at no charge.

FAQ

  • Registration. The user needs to sign up or log in as a guest.
  • Filling out personal data. After that, it’s required to add some personal data like name, age, and more.
  • Searching. Clients can choose the accommodation using various filters.
  • Requesting. Users need to ask for a stay and get confirmation.
  • Paying. The guest has to pay by credit card through the Airbnb service.
  • Traveling.
  • Registration. To start using the Airbnb service, users need to sign up or log in.
  • Advertising. Hosts can add their apartment or house.
  • Describing. Landlords need to add real photos of their accommodation and describe the location.
  • Communicating. It’s possible to start a conversation with a guest to clarify all the details.
  • Accepting or rejecting. The host has to accept or reject the stay.
  • Receiving money. The host can get money after the guest’s check-in.
  • Create a business plan for your booking app.
  • Hire in-house or outsource software builders.
  • Build a user-friendly design.
  • Integrate several features to create an MVP-version of your Airbnb app.
  • Test the app to avoid bugs and provide users with a great experience.
  • Release the app and update it regularly.

The final cost to build an app like Airbnb can reach approximately $65,650 for a mobile app (one platform) and $92,350 for a web version.

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