How to Start a Travel Website and Make Money

Jul 15, 2022
10 min
How to start a travel website and make money

When planning for a trip, you will need to do some research. While some travel websites display destination management companies that provide local travel services such as booking, day tours, restaurants, from the perspective of local service providers, many of such sites serve as ad carriers as well.

Building a travel blog can be a journey where you can put your experiences rather than a predetermined strategy. It’s a hobby that you can learn and play. Once you’ve found something that works, scale it up. You’ll end up creating a long-term business and discovering a new passion. You’ll end up traveling while also earning money.

Making money online with the travel niche can include various things such as:

  • Provide valuable content;
  • Develop software as a service;
  • Provide travel products through an e-commerce website;
  • Service-based website to help land clients.

An online travel website has only one goal in mind – assist others by providing information related to local and international tourists’ destinations.

Different Types of Travel Websites

The Internet can easily provide you with almost any information you need that relates to arranging a vacation or trip. There are numerous types of travel websites to choose from.

  • Inbound and outbound tours. Travelers can organize their journey with the help of travel professionals before they depart;
  • Travel blogs. These sites help travelers find places to go or activities to do while on vacation;
  • Travel booking. These sites help travelers book a place to stay while on a vacation;
  • Travel agency websites. These sites offer planning travel services, and they work with tour operators in terms of booking guidance;
  • Vacation package websites. These websites would help find a vacation or tour packages;
  • Activity websites. These sites give tourists the idea what kind of activities they can do while on vacation.


How do Travel Websites Make Money

Travel websites can generate revenue in several ways. Understanding how these businesses work will help you build a successful travel blog.

Some websites demand fees to see their content or use their services. Others charge a monthly or annual subscription fee to access unique content or discounts.

Partner marketing is one way for travel websites to make money.

Partner Network connects content creators with advertisers. This strategy works when a creator selects an appropriate brand to promote and then picks a particular product where they direct customers via an affiliate link.

Another option is to advertise.

How You Can Benefit From Advertising Products and Services

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Three Main Revenue Models Travel Websites Use to Make Money

There are several ways travel websites use a combination to earn revenue.

The Agency Model

It is based on commissions and’s principal revenue source. All of the hotels pay a ten percent to thirty percent fee on each booking. To rank higher on the website, hotels must pay a bigger commission.

The Advertising Model

It is the foundation of TripAdvisor’s principal income stream. TripAdvisor makes a commission based on the cost-per-click of clickable hotel booking buttons that take customers to the hotel’s website.

The Merchant Model

It is Expedia’s major income strategy in which the travel website buys hotel rooms in bulk and resells them to customers. The travel website can buy hotel rooms at a discount and sell them in packages with other services.

Advantages of Building a Travel Website:

  • Opportunity to meet and network with other travelers;
  • Gain access to travel opportunities that may result in cheap or free travel;
  • Limitless earning potential;
  • Lower maintenance cost which saves time and money;
  • Customer-centered industry where customers can leave feedback to figure out what kind of improvements should be made based on their suggestions.


Essential Tools for Online Travel Websites:

  • Domain name. The address of your website. You can purchase it from GoDaddy, Google Domains, or NameCheap;
  • Web Hosting. The location of your website’s files. BlueHost and Hostinger are some of the best web hosting services out there;
  • Software. The content management system (CMS) that you can use to create your website. For example, WIX, Weebley and WordPress;
  • Online marketing tools to start a travel blog.


How to Create a Travel Blog:

  • Choose a niche;
  • Figure out what you are selling;
  • Choose a platform;
  • Find hosting;
  • Create content;
  • Find help and scale;
  • Monetize and improve.

To start building a travel blog, you must first decide which platform you want to use. You can use WordPress, Wix, or Squarespace to create your website. After that, you’ll need to find a hosting company to set up your website.

You will need to create content and market your website once it’s up and running. You can also collaborate with other notable persons in the field in order to scale your website. Once done, you can start to improve and monetize your travel website.

How to Promote Your Travel Website

There are various online and offline marketing tactics for advertising your travel website. Online marketing strategies include using social media platforms like Facebook, Pinterest and Snapchat to attract users to visit your travel company’s website and optimizing your website for search engines, so it appears higher in relevant search results.

Offline marketing strategies include distributing leaflets and brochures to local businesses and visitor centers. Use social media networks, local business connections, and search engine optimization to reach more travelers and enhance traffic and sales.

Partnership Marketing for Tourism Offers

You can start promoting tourism companies and reservation sites that give a portion of the earnings on each reservation or transaction. The most popular is, which allows users to book hotels with a small fee that varies from 10% and 20% depending on the location of your property.

You can earn money by promoting the site using your referral link and get a commission on every booking. You can also purchase or use it for other purposes besides making money while traveling. Affiliated travel bloggers and influencers can earn 4% of all bookings.

Tourism Websites

Tourism websites rely on advertising to make money, which can be done through blogs or more targeted niche advertising of local attractions. A hotel firm may reveal pricing and incentives to persuade visitors to travel their way.

Occasionally, tourism websites will include links to affiliate stores where visitors may buy plane tickets or book hotel rooms in advance. Other websites will use the information they’ve obtained about your preferences (for lodging, date, and location) to offer you products depending on what they think might interest you.

A broker site would normally charge a fee for connecting travelers with service providers such as car rentals or holiday packages. Customers can typically tell the difference between this and the cost of the actual services.

What is an Online Travel Agency

An online Travel agency or OTA allows customers to research or book travel products. Travelers prefer to use online travel agencies rather than go directly to hotel or airline websites because they enjoy having multiple options, comparing prices, and filtering search results.

It’s the fastest and most convenient way to plan a trip without having to visit dozens of websites. OTAs come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Some, such as, have a large hotel inventory, while others, such as Expedia, offer discounted flights, package cruises, and car rentals.

There are a slew of other niches and OTAs that make up this diverse market. Any successful OTA is built on four pillars:

  • Inventory;
  • Compliance and accreditation;
  • Marketing;
  • Technologies.


It is the information about all flights, hotels, and cars that can come to the website from a variety of sources, including direct from hotels or airlines, consolidators, wholesalers, and others. An OTA should contact all providers and negotiate exclusive rates and terms, giving one OTA a competitive advantage over others.

Compliance and Accreditation

Selling flights and hotels on the Internet is not the same as running a regular e-commerce store. In most cases, becoming a travel agency necessitates IATA accreditation and contracts with global distribution systems. These organizations assess your industry experience, financial stability, personnel competence, and training.

Other market players will recognize you as a partner with a certificate, allowing you to sell flights and perform on their behalf. Many skilled travel agents should also be on standby to provide first-line support and after-sales service.


To survive in highly competitive OTA market you have to put effort into obtaining customers. You will run marketing activities including:

  • Email campaigns;
  • Interaction with customers;
  • Integration with metasearch engines;
  • Building a SEO strategy.

Fulfilling these tests effectively helps people find your website and consistently book there.


These are software solutions that automate OTA workflows to reap the biggest revenue by delivering the best customer experience. The OTA needs the following:

  • Search and booking engine;
  • Commission engine;
  • Back office;
  • Recommendation engine;
  • Dynamic packaging engine.


Search and Booking Engine

Online travel agency software is built around a booking engine that connects to GDSs, wholesalers, hotels, airlines, and other inventory providers.

It uses API technologies to connect your software to service providers. From requesting reservations on the supplier’s website to receiving and processing payments from end-users, a booking engine analyzes availability, organizes data, and manages the entire workflow.

This software would also find the customer the most cost-effective and relevant options. The engine accomplishes this by employing sophisticated algorithms that determine which inventory providers to contact and what search parameters to employ to find the best price.

Commission Engine

This is the primary revenue management tool you’ll use. To make the most profit while also providing competitive options, you must adjust the prices for the rooms or flights you offer.

The commission engine usually considers a variety of factors, such as demand and competitor prices. You can use traditional rule-based systems to set prices ahead of time or machine learning to increase revenue.

Back Office

This is where agents and managers perform the following tasks:

  • Control how business operates;
  • View all past and current bookings;
  • Store customer data;
  • Create and change business rules;
  • Access dashboards and reports.


Recommendation Engine

The system gathers metadata, behaviors, best searches, and other information to anticipate what people want. Simple categorization between business and leisure visitors can dramatically boost customer satisfaction.

Machine learning has achieved tremendous success in content personalization by guessing what a consumer could like without knowing anything about them.

Dynamic Packaging Engine

A package or bundle is a collection of travel products, such as a hotel stay including vehicle hire and flights.

Unlike a traditional walk-in agency where agents spend their time arranging a personalized tour for you, everything should happen swiftly with an OTA. As a result, a dynamic package and engine can automatically generate bundles.

What makes these packages dynamic is how they are priced. The algorithm generates a total pricing for a number of travel products, which is usually cheaper than buying them separately.

Things to Know Before Starting a Travel Agency Website:

  • A practical plan with a solid foundation;
  • Dedication and willingness to sacrifice to reach your goal;
  • Technical skills;
  • Basic knowledge of management, finance, record keeping and market analysis.

You will need to master these skills and techniques if you want your business to be successful.

Identify Your Reasons

Ask yourself why you want to own your business as a first and frequently missed stage. There are numerous causes for this including the following points.

  • Freedom from the nine to five daily work routine;
  • Being your own boss;
  • Doing what you want and when you want to do it;
  • Improving your standard of living.

Market Analysis

A company’s owner must have a thorough understanding of the market for their business to succeed. To understand the market, you must first analyze it, which takes time and effort. You don’t need to be a qualified statistician to evaluate the market, and it doesn’t have to be expensive.

Market research is a technique for gathering data on potential clients and determining the demand for your product or service. The more data you gather, the more likely you are to capture a market niche.


A large number of small businesses collapse every year. There are a lot of reasons for these failures, but one of the most common is a lack of funds. Too many entrepreneurs try to start and maintain a company without enough money.

Your business income should not be included in your operating expenses. You’ll need enough cash on hand to cover operating costs for at least the first three months.

How We Can Help Travel Bloggers Make Even More Money

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Monetize your social media channel in a few clicks by joining ConvertSocial monetization platform. Create useful videos, add referral links to your description section and get a commission every time someone buys using your link.

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