One of the most common questions from hosts who want to list their vacation rental properties on Airbnb is, “How much does Airbnb charge?” Since Airbnb doesn’t charge hosts to list their properties, a better question is, “What percentage does Airbnb take from guest bookings?” Airbnb charges hosts a service fee that is automatically taken from the booking subtotal. This article will dive into the details of service fees on Airbnb and answer the most common questions asked by hosts and guests about how Airbnb sets up its fee structure and we’ll discuss how hosts can save money by listing their properties on other listing sites such as RentalTrader.com.
Since Airbnb charges such a substantial amount to guest’s who use their booking platform, many potential renters can be turned away and won’t be willing to book. That is why Rental Trader feels so strongly about not charging guests a fee at all! Rental Trader simply charges hosts a small 4.5% fee and there is NO CHARGE to list on RentalTrader.com. To start your listing, just go to our home page and click the link on the upper right corner. The process is easy and quick.
- What Are Airbnb Host Fees?
- Why Does Airbnb Charge Service Fees?
- How Does Airbnb Calculate Service Fees?
- Do Guests Know About Airbnb Service Fees?
- How to Determine How Much Guests Will Pay
- Other Airbnb Expenses
- How to See the Host Service Fee on Airbnb
- How Does Airbnb Collect Service Fee Payments?
- How Much Does Airbnb Charge for Airbnb Experience Fees?
- Gaining Independence from Airbnb
- FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
What Are Airbnb Host Fees?
According to the Airbnb Help Center, the host fee is the amount that hosts are charged when bookings are confirmed. After guests have checked out, the host fee is automatically taken out of the payment that hosts receive from Airbnb.
The majority of hosts pay a flat rate of 3% of the booking subtotal, which is made up of the nightly rate, cleaning fee, and additional guest fees. The flat rate does not include Airbnb fees and taxes. Generally, guests pay a service fee of around 14% of the booking subtotal.
The host fee is the only fee that Airbnb charges. It does not charge fees for payment processing or for listing properties. There are two ways that host fees can be paid: a split fee and a host-only fee.
With a split fee, the total fee amount is split between hosts and guests, with hosts paying 3% and guests paying around 14% of the booking subtotal. There are some hosts who have to pay a larger percentage, such as Airbnb Plus Hosts, hosts with Super Strict cancellation policies, and hosts with listings in Italy. The split fee model is the most common way for hosts to pay the host fee.
The host-only fee structure takes the entire fee from the host payout. So, how much does Airbnb charge for the host-only fee? It ranges from 14% to 16% of the booking subtotal. However, there are some hosts that may pay more or less than the typical range of 14% to 16%. For example, hosts with listings in mainland China only pay 10%. Meanwhile, Airbnb Plus Hosts and hosts with Super Strict cancellation policies typically pay more.
Why Does Airbnb Charge Service Fees?
Airbnb charges a host service fee to help the company continue to run smoothly. These fees cover various products and services provided by Airbnb, such as marketing through Google and social media, protection for hosts and their vacation rental properties, educational resources for hosts, and 24/7 customer support.
How Does Airbnb Calculate Service Fees?
Airbnb calculates service fees based on the split fee or host-only fee structures. There are also other factors that come into play, which is why hosts may see a larger amount than expected deducted from their payouts.
Some of these other factors include the use of dynamic or long-term pricing, various guest and host discounts, currency exchange rates, local taxes and VATs (value-added taxes), routing rules, minimum payouts, and more.
Do Guests Know About Airbnb Service Fees?
Yes, guests are aware of how much does Airbnb charge for service fees. The service and cleaning fees are shown to guests so that they can more accurately estimate the total price they’ll pay for a booking. During checkout, any applicable local taxes are added on as well.
How to Determine How Much Guests Will Pay
After reservations are confirmed, hosts will be able to access a price breakdown. This breakdown is available through the booking confirmation email and in the host reservation details. It shows all fees and taxes collected by Airbnb, extra fees such as cleaning fees, the total price guests must pay, and the payout the host will receive.
Other Airbnb Expenses
Aside from the host service fee, there are other expenses to keep in mind when hosting an Airbnb vacation rental property.
To run a successful vacation rental, it’s necessary to stock up on various supplies and amenities. This includes items such as bedding, towels, bathroom toiletries, kitchen supplies, entertainment, and more. Amenities play a huge role in the overall guest experience and can make the difference between an average review and a five-star review.
Cleanup is another expense that’s worth noting, although it’s outside the realm of how much does Airbnb charge for fees. While some hosts opt to clean up between guests themselves, many choose to hire a cleaning crew to get the job done. Either way, hosts will need to set a budget for cleanup since it’s necessary to provide a clean and tidy environment to each new guest.
Insurance is also an important factor when running a vacation rental. Although Airbnb provides some protection, it’s always best to have an additional insurance policy. This protects hosts, their property, and their guests.
Finally, hosts cannot forget about taxes. Failing to pay taxes on a vacation rental property comes with unwanted consequences. In many cases, hosts choose to hire an accountant or use accounting software to help them stay on top of the taxes they owe.
How to See the Host Service Fee on Airbnb
Airbnb aims to remain transparent when it comes to fee breakdowns, so hosts can see the amount taken from the booking total. This fee is automatically deducted from hosts’ payouts. They can also navigate to their Transaction History from their account. From there, they can look at individual reservations, click on the reservation code, find the payout, and identify the Airbnb Service Fee.
How Does Airbnb Collect Service Fee Payments?
Airbnb collects its service fee payments automatically by deducting them from hosts’ payouts. Although there is some variation, most hosts pay a flat rate of 3% for the split-fee model or a rate ranging from 14% to 16% for the host-only fee structure.
How Much Does Airbnb Charge for Airbnb Experience Fees?
Airbnb Experience fees are slightly different from the general host service fees. Airbnb typically charges 20% of the price of the experience, although there are some exceptions for experiences focused on social impact. This Airbnb Experience fee is automatically deducted from hosts’ payouts.
Gaining Independence from Airbnb
Many vacation rental hosts prefer not to rely only on Airbnb. Here are a few ways to gain some independence as a host.
List Vacation Rentals on Other Sites
The first way for hosts to gain independence from Airbnb is simply to list their rentals on multiple sites. This includes sites like Vrbo, Booking.com, and others. RentalTrader is an excellent choice for hosts who are looking for lower fees, since it only charges hosts 4.5% per booking and doesn’t charge travelers a service fee at all. Plus, it’s completely free to set up a listing on RentalTrader, and it’s quick and easy to get started.
Start a Personal Booking Website
Hosts can benefit greatly from setting up their own booking website focused specifically on their vacation rental. Rather than worrying about how much does Airbnb charge, hosts can provide all the information travelers are looking for and allow guests to set up a booking directly from their website, rather than having to go through a listing site. This way, hosts can avoid having to pay fees from various listing sites, and they have more control over the process overall.
Use a Channel Manager
Those who have listed their vacation rental property on multiple websites should consider using a channel manager or property management system (PMS) to easily manage all of their listings. Manually updating multiple calendars can lead to double bookings and additional stress. Instead, relying on a channel manager or PMS to combine all calendars and keep everything organized can save hosts plenty of time and hassle. There are even budget-friendly options such as Lodgify that can make a huge difference in the hosting experience.
FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
How much does Airbnb charge to list your vacation rental?
It’s completely free to list a vacation rental on Airbnb. However, once a guest makes a booking, a host service fee comes into play.
Is there a way to avoid the Airbnb service fee?
No, there is not a way to avoid paying the Airbnb service fee since it is automatically deducted from hosts’ payouts. If hosts find a loophole or hack the website to avoid paying the fee, they violate Airbnb’s usage rules and risk permanent removal from the website. If you’d like lower costs for listing your vacation rental, please consider listing with us at RentalTrader.com. Our fees are among the lowest in the industry at just 4.5% for most bookings and there is no charge to list with us.
What happens to the fee if the guest cancels?
What happens to the host service fee when the guest cancels depends on the type of cancellation policy and payment method used. Generally, if guests are given a full refund, then hosts will not have to pay the host service fee.
Check out the following video to understand the Airbnb pricing structure and everything else discussed in this article with illustrations.