As the sharing economy continues to thrive, even the most traditional travelers are turning to private vacation rentals over traditional types of accommodations. One of the most popular sites people visit to find vacation rentals is Airbnb.


Airbnb has not only become a household name in many parts of the world, but it is also becoming synonymous with short-term rentals. There are Airbnb listings in over 191 countries around the globe, and, according to Airbnb, there is an average of 2 million people staying in an Airbnb rental every night. These numbers aren’t to be ignored and there’s no denying that if you’re renting out vacation properties, Airbnb should be a key part of your distribution strategy.

Even if you are aware of the clout that Airbnb holds in an evolving vacation rental industry and the exposure it gives rentals listed on the platform, you may still have some logistical questions about the channel. One thing you may be wondering is how much it will cost you to list on Airbnb.

How much does it cost to list on Airbnb?

Technically, as a host, you don’t pay anything to Airbnb. Airbnb fees and taxes are automatically taken from your (the host’s) payout after a guest has checked out of your property and the booking funds are released.

Airbnb Host Fees, Guest Fees Explained - MyVR

Airbnb host service fees

In the United States, Airbnb charges a 3% host fee for each booking you receive. The host fee is based on the “booking subtotal”: the sum of the nightly rate, cleaning fee and any additional guest fees you choose to charge. It should be noted that this fee can be up to 5% in certain countries, like Italy, and for those properties that have Super Strict cancellation policies.

When you determine your fees and add them into Airbnb, you see what your host fee is, but it is not be visible to your guests. While it does not affect your bottom line, Airbnb charges a guest fee up to 20% relative to the booking subtotal of every reservation.

Note: On June 4th, 2019, Airbnb implemented a change to their fee structure that requires any traditional hospitality type to take on a 15% host fee while eliminating the guest fee entirely. Specific to short-term property managers, Airbnb provides the option of either sticking with the old fee structure or adopting a similar 14% host fee while eliminating the guest fee. Some property managers feel that this new fee structure option will let them maintain more control over their rates than the split host/guest structure allows.

Airbnb experience fees

Additionally, as an Airbnb host, you can choose to offer “experiences” to your guests through Airbnb, to help them explore more of the attractions and amenities your locale has to offer. Airbnb charges a service fee of 20% in these cases, where the price is calculated on the cost of the experience. Airbnb will automatically deduct these fees from your payout.

There are no fees charged to guests for booking experiences.

What happens to the fee if a guest cancels?

If a guest cancels their reservation, the hosting fee may need to be deducted from the refund amount. If you use property management software (PMS) that charges fees for cancellations, this can have major implications on your business and income. MyVR never charges you any additional fees for guest cancellations.

As you scale your vacation rental business, it becomes increasingly important to be on Airbnb, as well as other channels to increase your revenue. With this growth comes the challenge of effectively managing your properties across all of your marketing channels, but with property management software you can save time by automating your channel management, inquiry workflows, payments and more.

MyVR's channel management solution is complete with direct connections to Airbnb, the other four major listing sites and their 70+ affiliate brands, meaning you never have to worry about double bookings or inflated fees ever again.

Airbnb has transformed the vacation rental industry for guests and hosts since its founding in 2008. The listing site is oftentimes one of the first channels that short-term property managers choose to list their properties on. Although the 20% guest fee can increase prices significantly for some properties, the low host fees and the young, massive audience make the channel a lucrative one for any property manager to be on.

Compared to the other four major channels, the cost to list your properties on Airbnb is rather low, meaning you bring home a larger piece of the pie. Airbnb is an excellent channel to start or grow your vacation rental business’s channel management strategy.