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05 January 2023

How to Develop Travel Mobile App for Tourists?

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A tourist trip is a combination of several typical actions: finding a vacation spot, booking a hotel room, buying tickets, planning a vacation route, sightseeing tours, visiting restaurants, etc. Travel agencies used to plan all this, but now tourists themselves prefer to do it using apps like TripAdvisor, Airbnb, Meetup and Google Flights. In this article, we'll show you how to develop such a mobile app and how much it costs.

Application development step by step

The process of developing an app can be roughly divided into six main stages. Here is a brief description.

Step 1. Choosing a niche

The first decision you must make is to decide exactly what your application will do. It can be an application for travel planning, booking hotel rooms, buying air tickets, renting a car, finding restaurants, finding travel partners, exploring local attractions and culture, or other useful activity for travelers.

The capabilities and functionality of apps will depend on this decision.

Step 2. Researching the market and competitors

After you have decided on the niche of the application, you can start analyzing the market and competitors. The market can be explored through research such as the Travelport Digital report on  the role of mobile communication in travel. A lot of data can also be found on sites like Statista.

The best way to research your competitors is to try out the best travel apps in your chosen niche. Explore their features and capabilities, what is unique about them and what they lack. Also, research the audience's reaction to them in order to understand what you need to do to be better than your competitors.

Step 3. Selecting the functions of your application

Identify features that are absolutely necessary to support the main purpose of the service and those that, if not required, can improve the user experience. It is advisable that you do this by researching similar applications and noting features that are useful and that the target audience likes.

Step 4. Hiring a development company

We recommend hiring a development company, rather than freelancers, as companies have a more professional work environment and an experienced team of specialists who are well versed in their tasks. Such team usually includes:

Step 5. Discussion and development

Hiring developers, you must explain them your ideas and business goals. An experienced team will understand what you want to do, even if the idea is not very clear. Together, you will develop technical documentation for the application and draw up an action plan, which usually consists of 5 stages.

Step 6. Promotion and advertising

Any application, no matter how unique, reliable, secure and feature-rich it may be, cannot be successful if you do not promote it on the appropriate platforms. Such platforms can be any online and offline sites where your target audience is. For example, you can ask a famous travel blogger to promote your service or advertise it on your YouTube channel and / or Facebook page.

Key features of the travel app

To help you with the third step of developing a mobile app, we have compiled a list of key features, as well as additional features that may be useful for tourists. To do this, we built the path of an ordinary tourist and noted those things that can satisfy his needs and / or solve possible problems along the way.

1. Firstly, the tourist needs to plan the trip. Here you need:

2. Now, after the trip has been planned, you need to book a place to stay in a hotel, hostel, bungalow or private house.

3. At the next stage, you need to take care of transport, that is, you need to buy / book tickets for a plane, bus, train or rent a car.

4. You also need to always remember that now, before making a final decision, tourists always look through information about hotels, airlines, car rental companies and all other services in the Internet.

5. And the last but not the least important detail before starting a tourist trip is checking the weather forecast.

6. When a tourist goes on a journey, the first thing he needs is proper navigation. Especially if it's an independent journey.

7. So, the tourist has arrived at his destination and wants to get to his hotel.

8. After checking into the hotel, the tourist will certainly want to see something unusual, colorful and unique, in addition to traditional tourist places.

9. You also need to think about how the tourist will communicate with the locals.

10. Everything is going well, the tourist is enjoying the trip, but suddenly he has a stomach ache or he loses a child in the crowd. What to do?

What else can a tourist need?

Travel app monetization models


If a tourist uses your mobile application to buy tickets, book a hotel room, pay for tours or rent a car, then you, as an intermediary, can charge commissions on all such transactions. Of course, you will need to negotiate with the relevant companies (for example, with hotel chain owners or airlines), but they are unlikely to be against cooperation.
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