• # Gohar Aslam
  • # App Development
  • # 9 October, 2023

The Cost of Hotel App Development: Key Factors and Best Practices

Technology continues to leave a lasting mark on every industrial sector. Technology has changed everything – from finance to healthcare- making things convenient, efficient, and secure. The travel industry has automated its operations and no longer uses conventional methods, resulting in increased productivity, smooth service delivery, and enhanced customer satisfaction. If you are a hotel business owner or an entrepreneur, you would be pleased to know that the development of hotel booking apps is gaining momentum, as they bring efficiency to processes and offer convenience to customers. It will also pique your interest in assessing the cost of hotel app development.

Research indicates that the global online hotel booking software market size is projected to grow to a massive figure of USD 25.3 billion during the forecast period of 2021-2029. These figures indicate a thriving future for hotel app development. This article aims to analyze the cost of hotel app development to assist you in making an informed decision.

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11 Key Features of the Hotel Booking App

The following is a list of hotel mobile app features. Generally, these features are commonly found in most hotel booking apps.

  • User-friendly Interface: The app must have an intuitive and user-friendly interface, allowing users to navigate and find relevant information quickly.
  • Search and Filter Options: The app needs a powerful search and filter feature for hotels according to location, price, amenities, and other preferences.
  • Booking and Payment System: This feature allows users to book hotels and make payments directly through the app. The booking process should be straightforward, and the payment system should be secure and reliable.
  • Hotel Information and Photos: Users can see detailed hotel information, including photos, amenities, room types, and reviews from other users.
  • Real-time Availability: This feature enables users to see real-time availability and pricing information for the hotels so that users can make informed decisions about their bookings.
  • User Reviews and Ratings: Users should be able to read reviews and ratings from other users who have stayed at the hotels to get an idea of the hotel’s quality and service.
  • Loyalty Programs and Discounts: This feature offers loyalty programs and discounts to users who frequently use the app to book hotels.
  • Customer Support: Users can use the customer support feature to contact support staff with any issues or questions about their bookings.
  • Payment Gateway: Mobile payment gateway enables users to pay for purchases and allows app owners to receive online payments. The payment gateway ensures that the amount is transferred, processed, encrypted, and verified from the customer to the merchant.
  • Multi-language Suppot: This feature supports multiple languages to cater to users from different countries and regions.

11. Integration with Travel Apps

A hotel booking app needs to be integrated with other travel apps, such as flight booking apps, to provide users with a seamless travel booking experience.

Hotel Booking Apps Benefits For Users & Businesses:

Here are the benefits of the hotel booking app for businesses and users.

For Business:

  • Increased Visibility: A hotelier can reach a wider audience and increase their visibility through a hotel booking app, attracting more customers to their hotel and increasing bookings.
  • Direct Bookings: Customers can book directly with the hotel through the app without needing a third-party booking agent. It can assist in increasing direct bookings and reduce commission fees.
  • Improved Customer Experience: A hotel booking app can give customers a fast and convenient way to book their stay, bettering the overall customer experience and increasing customer satisfaction.
  • Marketing and Promotion: Many hotel booking apps offer marketing and promotional tools that enhance awareness and attract more customers.
  • Data Access: A hotel booking app can provide the owner valuable customer data, such as booking patterns and preferences. This data can be used to improve marketing strategies and customize services to serve the customers better.
  • Online Reputation Supervision: A hotel booking app can provide owners with tools to manage their online reputation and respond to customer reviews. It can facilitate improving the hotel’s reputation and attract more customers.

For User

  • Convenient Booking: With a hotel booking app, users can quickly and conveniently book their accommodation with just a few taps on their mobile devices without having to go through the hassle of calling or emailing the hotel.
  • Numerous Options: Hotel booking apps offer users various accommodation options, from budget-friendly to luxurious hotels, allowing them to choose the one that best suits their preferences and budget.
  • Price Comparison: Users can easily compare the prices of different hotels on the app and choose the one they prefer.
  • Real-time Availability: Hotel booking apps provide users with real-time availability of hotel rooms so they can quickly see which hotels have availability for their desired travel dates.
  • Reviews and Ratings: Users can read reviews and ratings of hotels from other travelers, helping them make informed decisions about where to stay.
  • Loyalty Programs and Rewards: Some hotel booking apps offer loyalty programs and rewards to users, such as discounts on future bookings or free upgrades, which can save them money and enhance their overall experience.
  • Mobile-exclusive Deals: Many hotel booking apps offer mobile-exclusive deals and discounts, which can help users save money on their bookings.

Cost of Hotel App Development

The cost of developing a hotel app can vary depending on several factors, such as the platform (iOS, Android, or both), the features and functionality required, the level of customization needed, the size and experience of the development team, and the location of the development company.

Developing a hotel app can typically range from $10,000 to $100,000. A simple app with essential features and functionality may cost around $10,000 to $20,000, and a more complex app with advanced features and functionality may cost anywhere from $50,000 to $100,000.

Moreover, you should also consider the ongoing costs, such as maintenance, updates, and hosting fees. Adding these ongoing costs into your budget is essential when planning to develop a hotel app.

Hotel Booking App Monetization Strategies

1. Commission-based Model

You can charge a commission for each hotel booking made through your app, and you will receive a percentage of the revenue generated by the hotel.

2. Subscription-based Model

You can charge users a subscription fee for accessing premium features such as early check-in, late check-out, or exclusive deals.

3. Advertising Model

You can sell ad space to hotels, airlines, or other travel-related companies that want to promote their products and services to your app users.

4. Referral Model

You can earn money by referring users to other travel-related services such as car rentals, tour companies, or travel insurance providers.

5. Upselling Model

You can offer users additional services such as airport transfers, spa treatments, or meal packages during the booking process and earn a commission on each sale.

6. Loyalty Program

You can offer a loyalty program that rewards users for booking hotels through your app. For example, users can earn points for each booking, which can be redeemed for free stays, upgrades, or other rewards.

Business Models of Hotel Booking Apps

There are four widely used business models used in the hospitality industry.

1. Aggregator Model

An aggregator model for a hotel booking app is a platform that aggregates hotel listings and reservation services from various sources into a single app, allowing users to compare prices and availability across multiple providers in one place. An aggregator model app integrates numerous providers’ data and presents it in a unified format. It makes it easier for users to find the best deals, compare prices, and book their preferred hotels without checking multiple platforms.

2. Merchant Model

A merchant model acts as an intermediary between the hotel and the guest. The app displays the hotels listing their rooms and services, allowing customers to book directly through the app. The app also handles the entire booking and payment process. In the merchant model, the hotel manages the inventory, pricing, and availability. In contrast, the app charges a commission for each booking. Examples of this model include Booking.com and Expedia.com.

3. Advertising Model

In the advertising model, hotels can advertise rooms and services to prospective customers in return for fees paid directly to the app. In this model, hotels have less control over their pricing and inventory, and it is responsible for managing the availability and pricing. Examples of advertising models are Kayak.com and Trivago.com.

4. Dedicated Model

A dedicated model is one in which a platform is owned and operated by a particular hotel chain or a hotel. Under this model, the hotel or hotel chain has complete control over the inventory, pricing, and availability of rooms and services. Examples of dedicated model apps include Hilton Honors, Marriott Bonvoy, and Accor All.

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How does a hotel booking app work?

Hotel booking apps have a database of hotels and accommodations that users can browse. Users can search for hotels based on their preferred location, dates, budget, and other criteria. The app then displays a list of available options, prices, amenities, and user ratings. Users can select a hotel, choose a room type, and proceed with the booking process, involving personal details and payment information.

How much time does it take to develop a hotel booking app?

To give you a rough estimate, a basic hotel booking app with essential features like search, booking, payment, and user management may take 3-6 months to develop. However, the development time may increase by several months if you want to include advanced features such as social media integration, chat support, push notifications, or in-app messaging.

How much does it cost to build a hotel app?

The cost of hotel booking software can vary depending on various factors, including the features’ complexity, platform type, and technology stack. A rough estimate can range from $10,000 to $100,000.

Does a hotel booking app provide benefits?

A hotel app can provide several benefits to the hotel business, including improved customer experience, increased brand awareness, cost savings, and increased profits.

Senior Content Writer
Gohar Aslam
Coding Pixel

Gohar is a seasoned IT writer specializing in leading technologies. He holds a Diploma and Bachelor's degree from the University of London, with professional experience spanning over five years in the IT sector. His expertise involves a keen focus on mobile applications, web apps, blockchain, content management systems, e-commerce, and fintech. Beyond the professional field, Gohar is an avid reader and reads extensively about emerging and innovative technologies.