How does it work when Airbnb asks for an ID?
At Airbnb, we’re always working on making our community as secure as possible for everyone. That’s why, before booking a home or experience, or becoming a host, we may ask for a government ID.
As explained below, this helps us keep Airbnb secure, fight fraud, and more—and it’s something you’ll only have to do once.
- How it works
- When you’ll be asked for an ID
- Types of ID
- What gets shared with your host
- Storing and removing the photo of your ID
- Other ways ID info may be used
- About photo matching
When you’re asked for an ID, you’ll need to add a photo of a government ID (driver’s license, passport, etc.). Additionally, you may be asked to take a brand-new photo of yourself. This is different from your profile photo, which you may also be asked to provide.
If you're asked to take a photo of yourself, it needs to match your photo on your ID, and your ID must appear to be valid. If your photos don’t match, you’re under 18, or your ID doesn't appear to be valid, you won't be able to book the listing requiring an ID. If you’re under 18, all current reservations will also be cancelled.
You have 3 options for adding your ID:
- Take a photo of your ID using your phone
- Take a photo using your computer or mobile device’s web camera
- Upload an existing photo of your ID
Completing this process isn’t an endorsement of any host or guest, a guarantee of someone’s identity, or an assurance that interacting with them will be safe. Always use your own best judgement and follow our safety tips for guests and hosts.
This may happen for a couple of reasons. For example, some hosts require their guests to provide a government ID in order to book their place or experience.
There are also times when we’ll ask for an ID to help us confirm you’re really you.
But whatever the reason, your ID will never be shared with a host or anyone else who uses Airbnb.
If you need to come back and finish adding your ID later, that’s fine. Just go to airbnb.com/verify and you can pick up where you left off.
Depending on your location and what country you’re from, you may be able to add one of the following types of government ID:
- Driving licence
- National identity card
It needs to be an official government-issued ID—not an ID for a school, library, gym, etc.—that also includes a photo of you.
If you add a driving licence, you’ll be asked for two photos: one of the front and one of the back.
If you add a passport, make sure the photo includes the numbers located at the bottom of the page with your picture.
In Singapore: No matter which type of ID you add, be sure the image of your ID doesn’t show your NRIC (National Registration Identity Card) number/other national identification number. If you take a new photo of your ID, make sure all other info is visible—only your NRIC number/other national ID number should be covered. If you upload an existing photo of your ID, edit it first so that your NRIC number/other national ID number can’t be seen.
If you’re asked for a government ID, the following may be shared with your host:
- The first name on your ID
- Whether your ID has been successfully added
- Your profile photo and profile name
The following will never be shared with your host or anyone else who uses Airbnb:
- The photo of your ID
- The photo you take of yourself (if you’re asked to do that)
In Singapore: To further help protect your privacy, it’s important that your NRIC (National Registration Identity Card) number/other national identification number doesn’t appear in the photo of your ID. If you take a new photo of your ID, make sure all other info is visible – only your NRIC number/other national ID number should be covered. If you upload an existing photo of your ID, edit it so that your NRIC number/other national ID number can’t be seen. In September 2019, we made some changes to improve how we protect your NRIC number/other national ID number. If your ID was added before 1 September 2019 and your NRIC number/other national ID number appeared in your photo, that’s OK – we’ve already permanently deleted or redacted the photo of your ID, and there’s nothing you need to do. If your ID was added after 1 September 2019, we are storing the photo but we’ve removed your NRIC number/other national ID number for your protection.
We recommend not removing the photo of your ID – that’s because any upcoming reservations will be cancelled.
You can, however, remove the photo of your ID 90 days after you complete your most recent booking.
To remove the photo of your ID:
Go to Edit profile and click the X next to Identification.
Profile photos can also be removed, but the photo you take of yourself (if you’re asked to do that) cannot.
When you and other guests and hosts provide a government ID, it builds trust in the Airbnb community. It also helps us keep Airbnb secure, fight fraud, and more. There are a few ways that information from an ID may be used to do this.
First, here at Airbnb, we may use the information from an ID to better protect all guests and hosts. An ID helps us to check that everyone is who they say they are – and we can therefore do an even better job of keeping fraudulent users away from Airbnb. We can also keep accounts more secure and better determine that everyone who uses Airbnb is over 18 years old.
Additionally, where permitted by applicable law, we may provide information from an ID, such as a full name, address and date of birth, to our service providers to run background checks against public records for criminal convictions and sex offender registrations. For now, these checks are limited to users in the United States. While we believe these checks help us deter fraud and the misuse of our services, they don’t guarantee that interactions with people who book through Airbnb will be safe or problem-free. Please carefully review our notice about the limitations of background and registered sex offender checks.
Also, where permitted by applicable law, we may provide certain information from an ID to banks and other financial institutions (which helps them enforce various tax, anti-money laundering and sanctions laws), as well as to law enforcement agencies (who may be conducting investigations requiring Airbnb’s involvement).
Our goal is to work closely with these organisations and comply with our legal obligations, while also ensuring the respect, privacy and security of everyone who uses Airbnb.
If you’re asked to take a photo of yourself, we’ll also match this photo with the picture in the government ID you've already provided. This helps us make sure you’re really you.
Photo matching may provide some useful info, but no facial matching process is always completely accurate. The effectiveness of a comparison of facial features can vary greatly based on the skill and judgement of the reviewer, the quality and resolution of the photos, and whether there are significant changes in a person’s appearance between the two photos (for example, change in age, change in weight, different outfit).
As a result, this process may sometimes “match” photos that are not in fact of the same person, or fail to match photos that are of the same person. Fraudulent users may circumvent even the most sophisticated and diligent efforts to match photos submitted for comparison.
We don’t make any guarantee or representation about the accuracy or effectiveness of photo matching results. You shouldn’t rely on completion of the photo matching process as a guarantee of someone’s identity, or a guarantee that they’re someone you can safely interact with.