Got Id? ... and smart Pricing

What’s everyone’s skinny on this requiring Government ID thing? As a host, I can see many benefits… but as a frequent traveler… if would put me off of giving AirBnb a whirl. Just received my first booking for a place that isn’t even ready yet… my guest has no profile picture and just joined Air. I have been messaging with them and they appear real. I think I found them on facebook.

I’m renting out an entire place, so I’m not worried about sleeping at night with some nut in the house.

Smart Pricing - that thing is a crazy beast. I have a minimum of $75 set. Air was suggesting $78, then 2 days later suggests $49… my guest was booked at $80 - after my newbie discount… this booking happened AFTER they suggested I lower to $49. lol

I require it. Not sure what % of problems it will solve, however, it is no work for me and if a guest really wants to stay at my place they will get an id uploaded. It takes less than 5 mins for them as well.

I don’t require an ID at check-in as some hosts do. I have self-checkin.


I have Instant Book with Govt ID. Yes, it can slow things down. I had one guest who wasn’t able to book due to needing to upload ID but she was on a emergency road trip. I came up with a work around and she stayed with me but didn’t book via Airbnb. That said I’ve had 400+ guests and it’s only kept me from 4 or 5 bookings, and maybe 4 or 5 problems.

Smart pricing isn’t very smart, especially at first. Don’t lower your price too much. An entire place for $80 seems low.

I don’t require government ID. It’s not impossible to upload a copy of fake ID if you’re a serious scammer. If people are completely innocent (like me :wink: ) then uploading ID is no big deal.

I think it’s essential for us hosts to do it though to engender ‘trust’.

Ah, Smart Pricing - something I have had more ‘heated discussions’ about here than any other subject. I’ve heard others say that it has put prices at below the minimum but it has never ever done that to me. (Two listings). True, it usually defaults to the minimum I set but has never gone below it.

On a very positive note, it has added prices right up to the maximum I set (which I thought was crazily high, but gave it a go) and amazingly got bookings. So I love it.

This is true. You have to educate it. When I first started using it, it set higher prices for June, July and August. It definitely didn’t realise that I’m in South Florida and our tourist season (the more expensive season) is finishing just about now. June, July and August are (along with September and October) hurricane and rainy season months.

However, by manually altering prices, I forced it to eventually be ‘trained’. :slight_smile:

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Serious scammer could easily not upload any ID any stay at a place that doesn’t require them.


Thank you. I’m going to stick with Smart Pricing for awhile, but I won’t be reducing any lower than the $75. I will adjust my price up if I think the market can handle it. I’m not in a hot rental area. The area hotels do well, so I am aiming for the business traveler, family in the middle of relocating (we are in a military town and there is a lot of turnover), families that want to utilize the amenities in our community or overflow guests from residents in our community. No one is from around ‘here’, so there is an overflow problem when relatives come to visit. By the time they pay all the fees… I am priced just about what they would pay for one hotel room. Hoping to be crazy surprised, but being realistic about occupancy. 40% occupancy will make it worth sticking with Air and not doing a traditional 12 month lease.

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I agree. I think I would require it if I was staying on the same property. Hopefully I won’t be back here in 6 months suggesting everyone do it cuz of some sad story that happened to me. :-/

I rent two rooms in my home. Since I live on site as well, I’m a bit more strict about ID. Guests need verified ID to book, and then I check photo ID when they check in and take a photo of the ID, which I delete once they’ve checked out.

Aside from security reasons, I do this so that if there’s an emergency, I have full names and copies of ID for everyone who is staying to provide to the police or fire department.

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I have seen people say that even the Police can not get ID.

Renting a stand alone property not knowing who is booking seems very risky.


I leave smart pricing on but go in and adjust myself – for tracking and for local events. If you are in a city smaller than San Francisco or Atlanta – they probably won’t have information about your local big events so you have to research yourself. If in doubt, put you bottom price higher and then go in and lower on your own.
If you are just starting out, I would keep the price lower till you get some reviews – but I would rather rent less days at a higher price that all of the days in a month at a lower price – find out where your “cross point” for pricing is and go from there.