Brief Guide on Travel App Development with Cost Breakdown 2024

Leverage our expertise in travel app development to understand how to build your travel app with a complete cost breakdown

Travel app development

Want to build a travel app and enter the USD 1,445.1 billion travel planner app market? You are in the right place. We have experience building an online travel booking platform. Discover how you can develop your own travel app from our experience with a cost perspective. 

Travel Industry At a Glance

Before starting any development, you must have a strong knowledge of the industry related to that application, in this case, the travel industry.  

Simply put, this is the industry that provides services related to travel, such as travel itself, transportation, and support services. It also includes traveler experiences and destination services. 

The travel industry includes different sectors such as transportation, accommodation, food, attractions, entertainment, travel agencies, etc. 

This is also one of the most immense industries. In 2022, it contributed 7.7 trillion U.S. dollars to the global GDP. Statista has forecast that in 2033, this industry will increase by 11.6%. 

With the rise of this industry as well as the technology, trends like online platforms are also affecting the travel sector. $556 billion was made from travel applications in the year 2023. Considering the gain travel apps are making, many startup founders are becoming interested in travel app development.

In this article, we will assist you in learning all the information required to develop a travel app successfully.

What are Travel Apps in a Nutshell? 

Imagine a travel app is just like your travel guide in an application form. This application helps you book your flight and find places to stay. It can also navigate as your local guide. 

Once you are on a trip, it assists you in planning your expenses, adding new places or plans to your trip, and even translating language for you. You can also find real-time weather forecasts and currency converters in travel applications nowadays. 

But not all travel apps provide the same services. Some focus on a specific travel need, such as booking, check-in, flight status, and baggage tracking. Some target specific travelers, not services. Some, on the other hand, provide all-in-one services. 

Let’s take a quick look at some popular categories based on the service they provide. 

Booking and AccommodationThis type of application allows you to find and book flights, hotels, tours, and other travel services.Booking.com, Hotels.com, and Airbnb
Trip Planning and ItineraryYou can plan your trip, keep track of your reservations, and get to your travel papers with the help of these apps.Google Trips, TripIt, Roadtrippers and TripCase 
Flight and TransportationSome apps can help you search, compare, and book flights and other transportation methods, such as trains and busesKayak, Skyscanner, and Expedia
Navigation and MapsApps like these help you get to your destination by giving you maps, directions, information on public transport, and traffic updates.Google Maps,  Waze, HERE Maps, and Citymapper
Travel Guides and RecommendationsThese types of apps offer local insights, reviews, recommendations, ratings, and audio guides for various attractions and activitiesLonely Planet, TripAdvisor, Detour and Yelp
Budget and Expense TrackingThese types of applications allow you to manage trip budgets, track travel expenses, and split trip costs among travel partnersTrail Wallet, Expensify, and Splitwise
Language TranslationSome apps can help you communicate with locals and understand foreign languages by translating text and speechGoogle Translate, iTranslate, and Microsoft Translator
Travel InsuranceWith the help of these apps, you can protect yourself with travel insurance and assistanceAllianz Travel, SafetyWing, and World Nomads
Social TravelYou can also connect with travelers with similar mindsets and make your journey easy with some appsTravello, Backpackr, and TravBuddy

Do You Really Need a Travel Application?

As you are reading this article, we assume you want to build a travel app for yourself. Wait, pause for a moment. Do you really need a travel application, or will a travel website do for you? 

Don’t understand. Let me explain. Say you have a hotel and want people to book your reservations through an online platform. In this case, you don’t need a full-phase application; a website with limited features will do. 

Got More Confused? Actually, it’s very simple, the decision to build a travel website or an application depends on your specific needs and objectives. You can also consider buiding both or using a hybrid approach. Still, in the following section we have discussed some factors you can consider.

 Related Article:
A Detailed Case-study on No-Code Solution for Online Travel Booking Brands

Overview of Travel App Development

Now, let’s explore the world of travel applications. In 2019, just over one billion individuals used travel apps; about 1.5 billion people traveled globally, with over 65% of those bookings made via smartphone. 

Considering the popularity of travel apps, many startup founders are becoming interested in travel app development. But not all of them can become successful.

To complete your app development successfully. You must be very careful while choosing the basics, such as key features, technologies, etc. In this section, we will discuss the basics.

Key Features and Functionalities 

The first topic that can start your journey is the key features and functionality of your app. With the help of our expert developer Amit, who has previously worked on our client project Online Travel Booking Platform, I have created a list of key features with their functionality.

User’s Personal Area

In the list, first, we have the User’s personal area. You can also call this user sign-up and profile management part of your travel application. With this feature, your users can create personalized accounts with their preferences. This way, you can get useful user data and plan your development, marketing, service recommendations, etc.   

Search and Filter

Your app must allow users to find their perfect travel options by providing search functionality for flights, accommodations, and other services. You can include sorting options and filters to make the searching process seamless. 

Listing and Booking System

The listing will provide you with detailed information on the accommodations, flights, cars, etc. You can also add comparisons so users can choose better options. Booking will allow users to book their desired option within the app. You can also offer different discounts, loyalty programs, and deals in the booking section.

Navigation and Geolocation

For travel apps, you must integrate maps for navigation. Your users can get location-based services from the map. Adding the nearby place option will provide your users with the ability to explore nearby restaurants and attractions.

Travel Itinerary Generator

In this era of AI, this feature is a must. Your users can create a travel plan based on their preferences, duration, and budget. It can also suggest to the users the best place to visit, events to attend, things to do, etc., in the destination. 


Your app must offer users a secure payment system to manage their bookings and other expenses. This in-app feature will make it easier and seamless for users as they don’t need to go back and forth between apps or websites. As a result, it will lower the rate of abandoned bookings and increase your revenue.

User Ratings and Trip Reviews

Knowing your user’s feedback and opinions on the travel services and attractions will help your app to improve its recommendations and quality of service. This feature will also help users to read reviews from other travelers, compare ratings, and make informed decisions.

Technologies and Tools for Travel App Development

To ensure the scalability, security, performance, and future growth of your application, you need to choose the right stack. Also, there is no one-size-fits-all solution for technology and tools. Your technology stack choice will depend on your application’s type, complexity, budget, device, time, etc. We will be discussing the technologies for both applications and websites.

Travel Application DevelopmentWebsite Development
Front-end TechnologiesReact Native, Flutter, Swift, Objective-C, Java, or Kotlin, 
Frontend DevelopmentJavaScript, React.js, Angular, or Vue.js, HTML5
MongoDB, MySQL
StylingCSS3, SASS, or LESS for styling and layout
Cloud ServicesAWS, Google Cloud Platform (GCP) State ManagementRedux or Context API 
Authentication and AuthorizationOAuth, JWT (JSON Web Tokens), Role-based access control (RBAC) or similar mechanismsBackend DevelopmentNode.js, Python, Ruby, or Java 
Payment Gateway IntegrationStripe, PayPal, or BraintreeServerExpress.js, Flask/Django, Ruby on Rails, or Spring Boot
Cloud ServicesAWS (Amazon Web Services), Azure, or Google CloudDatabaseMySQL, PostgreSQL, MongoDB (for NoSQL)
TestingJest, Mocha, Chai, or SeleniumAPIsRESTful APIs or GraphQL

Step-by-Step Development Process

Now that you are aware of the technology and other important factors. Let me put all the pieces together. Here is a step-by-step development process for a travel application. 

Step 1: Set Your Objectives

Clearly define the objective and goal of your travel app.  You need to decide if you want a travel app or a website.  Then, if it’s a travel app, what type of app do you want based on the user pain point you want to solve. 

Step 2: Do an In-depth Research

Once you are set with your objectives.  It’s time to do in-depth market research on your targeted audience and competitors.  Also, you must identify unique selling points of your application.

Step 3: Figure Out the Features You Need

Based on your research and objective, you need to create a list of features you want to include in your application.  You need to prioritize your core features for the MVP.  You also need to design the UX /UI.

Step 4: Choose the Right Technology Stack

As I already discussed, your right technology stack choice solely depends on your project’s complexity, type, budget, device, time, etc.  Try to consider the frontend, backend technologies, databases,  etc., while selecting the technologies for your travel app.

Step 5: Create Your Development Team

It’s time to create the team you need to develop the application. As a founder, you have two options: in-house development or outsourcing. 

If you are a technical person,  you can control your app development in-house.  But if you are a non-technical founder,  you have to hire a team, including a CTO, developers, designers, etc. 

If you want to outsource, it can be cost-effective and give you access to a skilled team, but you need to decide if you want to outsource a part like development, design, front end, back end, or the whole project. 

Step 6: Test, Iterate, Optimize, and Launch

You can effectively build your MVP within weeks. After that, rapidly test your prototype to find issues and solve them. Create a marketing plan throughout the launching process. Collect your user feedback and improve the app according to your user needs.

Breakdown of Project Costs

Travel applications can cost you two thousand to two hundred thousand dollars. But it will depend on the functionality, development team rates, complexity, budget, etc., you require.    

Imagine you want a travel booking application with essential features like booking, information, itinerary planning, social integration, payment, and map integration. Now, let’s understand the general breakdown of this project’s cost. 

You can choose from different models, but we will discuss the in-house and outsourced models here.

In-house General Cost Breakdown

For in-house development, the first thing you need to do is assemble your team. However, this is the costliest option; hiring an in-house developer in the USA can range from $60,000 to $100,000+. 

And for a complete team, you must pay half a million to one million dollars annually. But, if your business is stable enough, in-house is the best option. Otherwise, you can go for alternatives. 

Outsourcing General Cost Breakdown

Outsourcing is one of the alternatives when budget is your issue. You can hire an entire team or developers for specific tasks. Outsourcing can range from $5,000 to $500,000, depending on the complexity of your project. 

Technext is one of the best outsourcing-focused software development companies with over ten years of experience. With a registered presence in Delaware, USA, we offer our clients risk-free and transparent services. 

FAQs on Travel App Development

Here are some extra help. These are the questions often asked by others. We have brought them together for your understanding. 

Q1: What is a Travel Application?

A travel application is a mobile or web application that is designed to help users to plan and organize their travel.

Q2: What is Travel App Development?

The process of developing an application that is specifically designed to help users with travel needs is travel app development.

Q3: What is the Goal of a Travel App?

The main goal of travel apps is to make travel comfortable, smooth, easy, and cost-effective by finding the best deals for travelers. 

Q4: Who are the Users of a Travel App?

Tourists, tourism businesses, bloggers, guides, etc., are the primary users of a travel app. 

Q5: Why is Travel Application Important?

Travels app makes planning and enjoying travel easier by acting as a helpful companion.  You can get help with your travel needs from the beginning to the end. 

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.