How to generate revenue with a travel app

Over 60% of cell phone users own a smart phone and 35% of them use it to make reservations. Mobile apps have become an important media platform to generate additional revenue. Due to it’s importance and growth, mTrip has developed different modules to generate a consistent stream revenue within its apps targeting tourism boards, tour operators & travel agencies, travel publishers and any other company in the travel industry.

8 Different ways to generate revenue

Bookings & reservations

Bookings and reservations are probably the most traditional way of generating revenue in a mobile app. It can be done either by adding an affiliate link which generates commission on each converted lead (example: Affiliate Partners Programme) or by selling the option of having a direct booking or reservation link to individual business to increase conversions.

Sponsored places

Sponsored places is comparable to Google AdWords in search results: by paying a fee to the application publisher, the local business will appear among the first places in the travel directory thereby increasing its visibility and in turn the number of clients. It can apply to any form of business such as restaurants, stores, activities, tours, hotels, etc.

Coupons & Vouchers

Who doesn’t like paying less for a product or a service? Offering coupons and vouchers within the app is extremely popular among users and probably the best way for a local businesses to attract new clients.


Advertising is quite possibly the oldest and proven way of generating revenues in a mobile app. A full screen advertising screen is displayed for a few seconds when the user opens the app. The advertisement can link to any external web page.

Push Notifications

Sending a notification to the app users is an excellent way to grab their attention even if the app is closed and the device in their pocket. Local businesses can send special offers to the travelers.

Premium listings

Premium listings allows you to give access to selected local businesses to modify their listing. They can enrich and update their listing by adding pictures, descriptions, price updates and additional information about their restaurant, activity, shop, hotel, rental, etc.

Sponsored app

Some app publishers like tourism boards or travel publishers will partner with a major company like airlines or telecom operator to associate their brand to the mobile app. This option is of course based on a long term partnership.

In-app purchases

Offering the mobile app for free is crucial to generate traffic to your app. However, free doesn’t mean totally free; you may provide a nice product for free but offer additional services or content for a low fee through in-app purchases. For example, additional travel content or offline maps & navigation could be charged for premium users.

Generating revenue is easy to setup

Local businesses

Offer local businesses different levels of marketing packages, which, include various options with different monthly fees on a minimum length engagement.

For example:

  • The “bronze package” which includes access to their listing and a link to their booking/reservation page for as low as $ a month.
  • The “silver package” which includes everything the bronze package offers as well as the coupons & vouchers option for as low as $$ a month.
  • The “gold package” which includes the bronze package items, sponsored places, advertising and occasional push notifications for as low as $$$ a month.

Affiliate programs

Subscribe to different affiliate programs and add the links to the places you include in the mobile app. Each time a user makes a hotel booking or reserves a table, you’ll get commission on it.


In-app purchases must be defined at the launch stage of the mobile app. Once the app is launched, you can change the prices of your in-apps at any time.

Contact us at [email protected] for more information on how to generate revenue with a travel app.