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Photo ID upon check in


I am interested in getting opinions from others…

I rent two rooms in my shared home, and have it in my house rules that photo ID must be presented at check-in, and that I will take a photo of the ID which is deleted once the guest checks out. This is not only for security reasons, but so I can identify everyone in the house in case of emergency. I explain this to the guests when they arrive, and everyone has complied without a problem.

Today I got a guest review (on a site other than Air), calling me “weird and paranoid” for doing this. I wrote a reply to the review, and I am attempting to have it removed, but I am curious…

Do any other hosts do something similar? As a guest, how would you react to this?

I should also add that I don’t really plan to change my policy based on this review. In my experience, guests who are happy for me to have a copy of their ID cause very few problems!


In Budapest we have to check ID, record D.O.B,passport number, address, name, place of birth for the local tax authorities. Most guests comply ok, some don’t want too, but then given the choice of leaving or complying they always comply. We don’t photograph ID though.


In many European countries, by law you have to check ID and have this information available for authorities so I am absolutely okay with this.

Personally @daniellealberta I don’t feel the need to ask for photo ID, as I have my listing set that only guests with photo ID can book.

If I was asked for photo ID by a host that wasn’t legally required to collect this information, for example in the US or Canada, I would find it rather strange. I would be concerned about the security risk of the host collecting the information and how safely they were storing this information.

I don’t see why Airbnb would remove your guest review, as they are sharing their personal opinion.

Why not make it clear up front in your listing as well as in your house rules that this is a condition of booking for you to help manage expectations. It’s absolutely your right to run your listing in the way that works for you, but it might put some off staying with you.


It’s so frustrating to have something in house rules (as danielle does) which guests are “obligated” to read and then have to put it again and again. More and more the obligation is on the host.


Your reasons for taking them are a bit odd. Usually hosts want a copy of the ID to track a guest down and file a lawsuit for damages caused.

I don’t think there is necessarily anything wrong with doing this, however you should expect some people uncomfortable with it.

Make sure it is worth the potential bad reviews.


It is indeed frustrating, but as we all know guests don’t always read house rules so I think it’s always good to repeat key information such as a host having animals, small children or wanting to check ID up front, to help manage expectations and ensure a good fit.


This is exactly why I check the ID and take a photo. Sure, the person who made the booking has provided verified ID. But they’ve provided it to AirBnB, not to me, and AirBnB doesn’t share that information with the host. If I don’t check their ID, I have no idea if the person showing up at my door is the same one who’s name appears on the booking, especially if they don’t use their photo in the profile.

I’ve mentioned this in previous posts, I do work for the fire department. It always amazes me how many fires we get in multiple occupancies (like apartment buildings and hotels), where the person in charge of the building has no idea who is currently living or staying there, and can provide no contact information. As a result, the second reason I take a photo of the ID from guest is so that if we have an emergency, I can provide identification to the authorities and I know who’s in the house at all times. This is for their safety as much as mine.


Checking ID seems absolutely fine to me. Providing a copy of it may be of legitimate concern. I would simply confirm that they are who they say they are - record their full name, possibly - and rely on the contact information provided by Airbnb.

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