Guests can remove profile photos once uploaded

Woke up this morning to a booking with no photo, no gov ID and no booking questions answered…

Just off the phone from Airbnb and they told me that a guest can upload the profile photo to book to meet the booking requirement and then remove it. (red flag if this is what happened).

She also told me I have never had the government ID box booked. Which is an outright lie as I have had always had it booked since I have set up my listing.

So I am not sure how credible her responses are.

Anyway she is going to call the guest and let them know if they don’t upload the photo and answer my booking questions within the next six hours they will cancel the booking.

I was under the impression that uploading a photo was not required due to past issues related to discrimination.

So the guests had a photo that they removed after the booking was confirmed?
That is really weird and surely a big red flag. Why would you not have a photo of your self when you’re going to stay in somebody’s private home?
People are strange.

You’re doing the right thing. I too would cancel depending on the outcome. It does sound strange.


I just had a guest this week with no photo, just the gray circle with a silhouette. One of the reasons I have so few requirements is due to Airbnb’s lack of support. I have to be on the phone with them for hours and then half the time they can’t/won’t help.

I don’t know why any single individual would or wouldn’t but I can’t tell most people from their photo anyway. At this point, I’d say 80% of my 600+ guests have no photo that I could use to identify them.

Exactly. Based on all the stuff I read on this forum, it’s obvious that Airbnb’s customer support people just make stuff up. I don’t think they are being instructed to lie by Airbnb to cover up issues, but rather it’s a combination of incompetence and fear of not the meeting metrics that call-center personnel are typically held to.

There are lots of bugs in Airbnb’s software and this reservation chanced upon one of them.

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No that’s not true, you can check your listing so that you see the guests photo on booking.

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Well I have messaged him and Airbnb have messaged and called him. No response as yet. However I fear he is travelling as he is from New Zealand.

If I don’t get anything by the morning, I will ask Airbnb to cancel the booking.

I understand you have your standards and no reason to abandon them. But from a guest point of view I’d be so pissed if I landed, checked my messages and found that I had a canceled booking. This is a big problem for Airbnb that hotels don’t have.

Well the guest booked yesterday so i am giving him more than 48 hours to respond before I consider cancelling @KKC

Airbnb have called his mobile. i have messaged him on Airbnb. And airbnb messaged him via email - so have tried to cover all bases. I would have tried to call but he didn’t provide me with a phone number.

That’s giving him plenty of time to respond to the questions I asked him to complete when he booked and provide the photo that either he didn’t upload (Airbnb error) or did upload to be able to book and then removed (in which case I don’t want him).


Yeah, I’m not saying it’s your problem. It’s just a problem with Airbnb. And since they want 100% of the business I can see a future where this just isn’t an option for hosts. That is you will have to be willing to let strangers about which you know nothing into your home or you will have to leave Airbnb because Airbnb will cater to the guest’s desire for it to be just like booking a hotel. I hope I’m wrong or retired from Airbnb before then.

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He’s just replied
He’s in the UK
He wants to know how to get to my place (covered in detail by train, bus, coach and car in my guide book) but not bothering to answer my check in questions or upload a photo.
I am definitely cancelling if I don’t have a photo by the time I leave for work in the morning !!


So do you reply something to effect of “Unless you are able to answer my check in questions and upload a photo within the next three hours I will be unable to honor your reservation?”

Perhaps I should have been more emphatic, I said ‘in order that I can go ahead with your booking’ when I emailed him this morning.

You are right I should have given him a time deadline.

He’s clearly not reading my messages, not a good sign.


I’ve had a couple of guests that I cancelled for similar reasons and I didn’t warn them. They weren’t same day coming from a foreign country so it made it much easier to be done with their nonsense. One was a woman traveling with her dog who had stayed here 3 times before. The 4th reservation she questioned my pet fee. I thought “really? now?” She was a bit of a nut anyway and I’m was glad to have her off my client list. LOL.


Well luckily he is in the south of England now, so I don’t feel too bad if I cancel in the morning.

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A quick update (as I often wish those posting here with a problem come back to tell us about the outcomes).

Photo was uploaded and I received a check in time. No answers to my booking questions, but I let these go as Airbnb had confirmed that if I was uncomfortable on arrival they would cancel.

Guest arrived yesterday. Very nice older guy.

Completely non teccie and first time Airbnb user led to him having a meltdown trying to use it.

He confirmed he hadn’t tried to upload a photo but had been able to book without it and only uploaded the photo when my message asking for it came through. (so this means he was able to book without a photo even though I had the box ticked saying they couldn’t book without one).

He seems nice if overly chatty so seems like everything turned out in the end.

Moral of the story:

  1. Airbnb reps don’t always know what they are talking about but are useful for chasing guests who don’t respond.

  2. Don’t rush to turn down a guest who doesn’t immediately meet your booking criteria. It’s worth following up to ask them to provide the verifications/information you require before asking Airbnb to cancel.