Last week I got burned and ended up refunding an entire three-day stay to get the guest out. I should have known better his profile picture was of him and friends flipping off the camera. 


To instantly book my cabin, I require: 

Government ID and profile picture. 


Also, my instant book pre-booking message reads: 

"Reservations booked must be booked by the person staying. Also, please provide your reason for visiting, e.g., visiting family, heading to Yosemite, etc."  


So yesterday when I got a booking showing a cat picture and no reason for staying, I got nervous. I called Airbnb they said my only option was to cancel the reservation. And not to worry because I get three free cancelations. I was afraid if I let her know that she needed to update her profile picture to meet the Airbnb guidelines, it would make her mad, and I would end up paying the price. So after asking the CS rep about ten questions, one being, is this the only option? I went ahead and canceled the reservation and lost one of my free cancelations. 


She was furious. Then I turned around and rebooked the listing, then left a message "Superhost?"


I got back on with the CS rep. she said, "that's really strange behavior." So she escalated me to another CS rep, who suggested she ask her to update her profile picture to meet the Airbnb guidelines. That would have been a tremendous first solution but not a good second solution, and of course, I would lose another of my free cancelations if I canceled her again. So I asked to be escalated again. By the third CS rep, the reservation was canceled again. But now I've lost another three days because I have blocked the days off, so she can't rebook. 


So there are two issues here. 

  1. Why doesn't Airbnb monitor profile pictures? They have guidelines, but those guidelines are not met so often, and it becomes the hosts' issue. Airbnb should be rejecting profile pictures; there is a technology that can do that. 
  2. Why does every CS call need to be escalated three times for resolution? They have become so bad in the last year every CS experience seems to become painful. 


30 Replies

Re: Airbnb Profile Picture Guidelines are not Enforced so it becomes the hosts issue.

Florence, Canada
Level 10

I know you've got it handled now, @Sherry399 , but if you ever want to do it through the browser in future, click on your photo at the upper right of the screen. Choose "Account" from the dropdown. In the first line after Account on that screen you will see "Go to profile". Click that. There you will see "Update photo" underneath your present photo. That's what you want. From there you can upload a new photo and delete any old photos. 

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