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How Much Does Airbnb Take?

What does Airbnb charge hosts and how much do you actually get from your Airbnb bookings?

24 November 2021 - 5 mins

airbnb commission

Airbnb fees can be pretty difficult to get your head around, mainly due to the different types of fee structures they use.

In this article we hope to simplify their fees so you can get a clear understanding how much money you make from your bookings!

We’ll also explore how these charges compare with other major platforms such as Vrbo, HomeAway, and Clickstay (us!).

If you don't have time to read the whole article, check out our infographic below:

Airbnb fee structures

You may have noticed with Airbnb commission there are two different structures:

  • Split Fee is the most common, and is where Airbnb’s fees are split between the host and the guest. The host will usually pay a 3% fee of the booking subtotal, while the guest will pay around 14% (although this varies depending on various factors)
  • Host-only fee is where the entire fee is deducted from the host payout. The fee is typically 14-16%.

Should I choose Split Fee or Host-only fee?

The first thing to consider here is that you may well not have a choice in the matter.

You are obliged to choose the host-only fee if you:

  • List a hotel, or
  • Use a channel manager (unless those hosts have a majority of their listings in the US, Canada, Bahamas, Mexico, Argentina, Taiwan, or Uruguay.

So if you fall into either of these categories, you don’t have to worry as the decision has already been made for you! You’re paying flat rate of 14-16% on each booking.

But if you do have a choice, which should you go for?

As you can see from this infographic, there's not much difference in terms of how much money Airbnb takes from split fee vs host-only bookings. The only real difference is how they position the fee.

Pros of split fee:

  • Low 3% owner fee

Cons of split fee

  • Renters must pay 14-16% fee on top of booking value, making your pricing less competitive

Pros of host-only fee:

  • Predictable structure simplifies pricing structure
  • Fees are hidden from the guest, making you more likely to get bookings

Cons of host-only fee:

  • High 14-16% fee taken from owner's cut

Airbnb Fees vs Other OTAs

Airbnb vs Vrbo

Hosts can choose between two fee structures. These include:

  • An annual subscription fee of $499 – covering all bookings throughout the year. Note, VRBO now only allow certain properties to choose this option. If you are unable to select it online, you can try calling their customer service.
  • Individual booking fees – where hosts are charged 5% commission per booking, plus a 3% card processing fee.

Guests are charged between 6-12% of the total reservation cost.

As we’ve already seen, if you’re confident you’ll exceed the minimum number of bookings – the flexibility to choose an annual subscription is great. Compared to Airbnb’s individual booking fees (whether split fees or host-only) it could add up to a significant saving.

Airbnb vs HomeAway

Like Vrbo, HomeAway was acquired by the Expedia group.

In 2020, HomeAway was amalgamated under the Vrbo brand and no longer exists separately. This means that the fee structures are exactly the same – with all traffic automatically redirecting to Vrbo.

Airbnb vs hosts over 28 million listings worldwide. It has traditionally focused on larger hotels and resorts as opposed to private homes and vacation rentals, so it’s worthwhile thinking about whether the target audience is right for your property.

Fees aren’t charged to guests, but commission is between 10% and 25% for property owners – depending on their country and location. The average rate sits around 15%.

Whilst a flat rate of 15% is substantial – this roughly equates with Airbnb’s “host-only” fees.

Airbnb vs Clickstay

Clickstay charges just a flat 3% payment fee for bookings made on the platform, assuming you choose our direct payments option.

Direct payments also differ from the other platforms in this article, in that the renter pays your account directly meaning you can access your money when the booking is made, rather than after the booking is completed.

Get in touch with our dedicated customer support team to ask any questions about listing your property. We’d be glad to help at any stage of the process.

If you own a vacation rental property, partnering with platforms such as Rentalsystems and Clickstay can keep your expenses down and bookings up! We pride ourselves on empowering owners with low fees, community tips and marketing strategies.

Join the Rentalsystems Facebook group to drive your direct bookings and connect with other like-minded vacation rental owners.