Sudden decline in inquiries & bookings; Now getting pressed by Airbnb lower prices

A few weeks ago, I activated the guest requirement for a government ID for Instant Book. My unit is usually booked 6-8 weeks in advance. This is the slow season but it shouldn’t be that slow. Airbnb is now sending me information about other unit’s being booked at significantly lower prices.

I checked prior threads and see that others are getting hammered by Airbnb on lowering prices so I’m in good company.

I couldn’t find a thread discussing implementing the government ID and bookings declining.

This is from the Airbnb site:
“Guest requirements
Airbnb standard requirements
Profile photo, confirmed email and phone number, and payment information. New guests acknowledge how traveling on Airbnb is different.”

Has anyone else encountered a sudden decline in bookings after implementing the ID requirement? I thought the additional requirements of ID & positive prior host review would only affect IB; others could search & inquire as usual. Did I misunderstand?

Was there a particular reason you chose the activate the requirement for government ID?

I have never not had the government ID requirement so can’t compare. I am still high in the rankings, but bookings have been slower than last year. I may have to change my marketing strategy, but I am not going to go to the basement prices that AirBNB might suggest.

Do some anonymous searches for dates that you have open. Filter to only show the type of listing that you have and then check the price tab. You will get the “average” price for those dates which might help you decide where your pricing should be relatively.

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@daniellalberta. I thought I was activating the ID only for Instant Book.

@smtucker. Good advice. Thank you.

I did browse the units Airbnb sent as part of their pressuring me to lower prices. One had crazy low prices (2BR/2BA, ocean view, $45 a night!). (Squirrel moment: A date bragged about lowering his rental to a crazy low price during his separation (pending divorce). His separation agreement stated the wife would receive the proceeds from the rental net of expenses. Rat-Bstd. I didn’t go out with him again after hearing that story.)

The other two were not comparable listings due to locations & units’ interiors needing updating.

It is possible I missed a shift in the market price so I will take your advice on doing a comparison search.

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Make sure that you use a different browser [one that doesn’t have your login credentials for AirBNB] when you do your research. Otherwise, AirBNB gives you misleading results.


Perhaps I misunderstood. I assumed that you originally did not have the requirement for government ID switched on and then decided to change your IB requirements so that guests now needed ID. I was wondering what had prompted you to make the change.

I have always required government ID for my listings, so I don’t have anything to compare it to. My feeling is that government ID should be the minimum standard for anyone wanting to stay in my home. If guests can’t prove who they are, then I’m not interested in hosting them.

I totally agree that doing a market comparison might be a good idea. If you are significantly more expensive than other listings in your area, then that’s probably more of a factor then whether or not you ask for ID.

That being said, what I have learned from doing AirBnB is that you’re only going to be happy doing it if you set your own rules and keep to them. Your lowest price should be YOUR lowest price, not the lowest price Airbnb suggests. If you don’t feel comfortable hosting guests that don’t provide ID, then don’t! It’s completely your choice at the end of the day.


@daniellealberta. I set up my guest requirements 3 years ago to be Airbnb standard requirements which do not include Govt. ID. I thought I was adding Govt ID only for IB. It appears it is for all bookings.

I manage my property remotely and it is an entire condo. A neighbor there helps me if there is a problem requiring immediate personal attention. Since the unit isn’t my home, I used the Airbnb verifications only.

About managing remotely: The guests do their own exit cleaning and it has gone amazing well. They like saving the cleaning fee (services charge $175 or more plus linen fees). I give them a check list of the cleaning expected & supply cleaning supplies. Upon check-in I ask if they found the unit clean & in good shape. If no, they send me pics, I Charge the last guest a $75 cleaning fee & give it to the new guest. There have only been 2 problems and they weren’t bad. Guests usually leave the unit cleaner than a service would have.

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This is amazing. …

@KKC. It is amazing an I am grateful.

It is a resort area so all the cleaners must zoom in between 10 am & 3 pm and clean as many units as possible. It is not uncommon for the service to do what I would call “wiping off the tops” and speedy vacuuming. A common thread I hear from guest to guest is that they try to leave it as good or better than when they arrived.

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If you go through the profiles of the last guests that booked before you added this criterion, what do you see? Are they mainly non-gov-id’ers? If so, your market is perhaps mainly such folk?

I have a government ID requirement for my IB clients but have always had this when I didn’t have IB so have nothing to compare against.

I must say you are brave leaving guests to clean for themselves. I wouldn’t.

How do you check before the next guest comes in that it is clean to the standard you would expect.

Do you have a local host that manages things such as linen changes, checks on properties and any problems on site?

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I manage my property remotely and it is an entire condo. A neighbor there helps me if there is a problem requiring immediate personal attention.

I give guests a check list of the cleaning expected & supply cleaning supplies. Upon check-in I ask if they found the unit clean & in good shape. If no, they send me pics, I Charge the last guest a $75 cleaning fee & give it to the new guest. There have only been 2 problems and they were very minor.

Before the booking is “official” I make it clear of the cleaning self service. Inquiries who find it unacceptable, book with someone else.

I think it has worked due to a combination of: 1. They want to get a good review 2. Upon each guest’s arrival, I check with them about the condo condition so they know I will ask the next guest about them. 3. They like saving the cleaning fee 4. prior to booking, potential guests are made aware that if they don’t leave the unit clean, I will charge them a $75 fee.

Linens: Resort area condo. Area standard is to make up your own bed & either “bring your own” OR use a linen service for a $75 -$120 fee. My guests either use the linens in the unit then wash & dry them when they leave or bring their own. Guests like not having a linen fee.

In the event of a cleaning debacle, my neighbor can assist and I can drive to the unit. With 3 summers of renting 2 condos, I’ve only had 2 minor events.

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Airnb sends me ridiculously low prices using local private room price saying I’m too high, ignoring that op I offer 3 bedroom whole house. Just ignore.


I more or less ignore the “you missed nn bookings” note from BNB and set prices where I want but it seems to be very sensitive. For example due to frequently getting 3 guests (extra double bed and bedroom for next to nothing) I recently raised my extra person rate (after 2 persons) a few dollars and bookings over two ceased immediately even though 4 works out cheaper per person then the first 2. Maybe it is not price but maybe there are not many 4’s are out there, who knows!

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I am not sure what happens, like this. In the past I have put up my prices and got a slowdown in bookings so put them back down again. Recently I put them up again and have been booked solid at much higher prices. I did always wonder if my prices were below $100 a night it would actually put some people off LOL. I think maybe because I have kept an eye on other local properties who all seem to ask too much for a low level of reviews.Since I hit 150 5 star reviews maybe I have been promoted more? Also Airs suggested prices going forward seem to be much more in line with my own expectations (50% higher than in the past) so maybe they have looked at what I have achieved in the past and upgraded me. Anybody else had this experience?

@JamJerrupSunset. About the low price maybe putting some people off: a good friend who routinely uses Airbnb told me that she avoids the lowest priced listings because it makes her wonder “what’s wrong”. She also avoids the most expensive because her reason for using Airbnb is to help make her trips more affordable.


I followed @smtucker 's advice and did a search.

I found that my monthly pricing is spot on and that my daily/weekly pricing for Jan-Feb is slightly high.

This is a HIGHLY competitive and seasonal market. Nov & Dec are historically low rental months because people are busy with the holidays for a vacation.

It appears several hosts are using incredibly low prices in Nov & Dec to attract the rentals.

I don’t want to be the cheapest so I’m lowering my Nov & Dec prices a bit to stay competitive.

About the Govt ID: I looked at the profiles of several of my guests prior to me activating the Govt ID for instant book. They had not provided Govt Ids. It appears I can’t activate Govt ID required for instant book only. I’m going to put further thought into my options before I remove the Govt ID requirement.

I lowered my prices to increase the numbers of rentals… and it did, however I am still doing the same amount or work to clean and host for less money and the type of guest booking me was different. There are more people in my area renting for dirt cheap prices but you don’t make money devaluing your home and spending more time on laundry and cleaning supplies plus time. I decided to increase my prices. I’ll rent less but overall I’ll come out even at the end of the month.