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Airbnb Interview Questions & Reviews

Updated Jul 25, 2014
All Interviews Received Offers

Getting an Interview  

65%
15%
15%

Interview Experience  

50%
18%
31%

Interview Difficulty  

Average Difficulty
93 candidate interviews
in
9 people found this helpful

No Offer

Neutral Experience

Very Difficult Interview

Software Engineer Interview

Software Engineer
San Francisco, CA

I applied online and the process took 1+ week - interviewed at Airbnb in November 2013.

Interview Details – Applied online Nov 2013.

1. Few days later spoke with very knowledgeable recruiter.
2. In 2 days scheduled the tech phone screen using coderpad - didn't have enough time to finish the problem.

Overall the questions are on the difficult side for phone screening. I wonder how many people can produce working code in 40min. I would recommend people try the two questions, and give yourself 40min for each. The code need to be complied and working. Please comment on this post and tell how long it too you.

Interview Question – 1. find all the combinations of a string in lowercase and uppercase. For example, string "ab" -> "ab", "Ab", "aB", "AB". So, you will have 2^n (n = number of chars in the string) output strings. The goal is for you to test each of these string and see if it match a hidden string.

2. Implement a simple regex parser which, given a string and a pattern, returns a boolean indicating whether the input matches the pattern. By simple, we mean that the regex can only contain special character: * (star), . (dot), + (plus). The star means what you'd expect, that there will be zero or more of previous character in that place in the pattern. The dot means any character for that position. The plus means one or more of previous character in that place in the pattern.
  Answer Question


2 people found this helpful

Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Very Difficult Interview

Customer Support Representative Interview

Customer Support Representative
San Francisco, CA

I applied online and the process took 2 weeks - interviewed at Airbnb in February 2013.

Interview Details – The interview and hiring process are great. Well designed for the experience. Their Talent team is respectful of your time and is flexible with scheduling. The interviews are thorough and suited for the skill set they are looking for. I have to say, I had FUN at this interview day.

Interview Question – What was your worst travel moment? What happened?   Answer Question

Negotiation Details – No negotiation allowed for this role.


1 person found this helpful

No Offer

Negative Experience

Very Difficult Interview

Customer Support Content Manager Interview

Customer Support Content Manager
San Francisco, CA

I applied online and the process took a day - interviewed at Airbnb in February 2012.

Interview Details – I applied for this job sometime in Winter 2011. First, I received an email apology on February 2 for not replying to everyone's applications for this position and that we'd receive responses soon. Then I received a later email on February 16 saying Airbnb was not hiring for this position because the new focus was on finding customer support agents and if the Content Manager position opened up, we would be the first applicants to hear back. Now, over a month later (March 23), I receive an email that this position was filled.


1 person found this helpful

Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Difficult Interview

Customer Experience Specialist Interview

Customer Experience Specialist
Portland, OR

I applied online and the process took 2 months - interviewed at Airbnb in May 2014.

Interview Details – I applied online by first sending in my resume. A few days later was sent a link to HireArt to complete a 7 question interview that had video portions. It was easy enough but took me forever because I kept re-recording. Waited over a month and finally got an invite to the group interview aka hire meetup. There were about 25 or so other candidates and about 8-10 current Airbnb employees. The process took a few hours, was less scary than I'd worked myself for, and involved some role-playing, survival team-building scenarios, and short one-on-one interviews. The next day I was asked to do a Skype interview with someone in Dublin. Still waiting to hear back but I think it went very well and felt natural. Basically, Airbnb staff members are really chill, respectful, and easy to talk to. Research company culture and policies. A billion bonus points if you've used the site as a guest or host and like to travel.

Interview Question – It wasn't "difficult" per se, but they asked me if I could have any job in the world tomorrow what it would be. Unexpected and potentially tricky!   View Answers (2)

Negotiation Details – **still waiting to hear back, but I know salary is set in stone and is competitive!**


2 people found this helpful

No Offer

Negative Experience

Difficult Interview

Customer Experience Specialist Interview

Customer Experience Specialist

I applied online and the process took 2 months - interviewed at Airbnb in May 2014.

Interview Details – First step was to submit a resume and cover letter. Took about a month to hear back. Next step was an online interview process through Hireart which included making a few videos and writing a few responses to questions. This took a few hours, though it says it should only take 40 min. You can re-record videos if you'd like. The next step was a group meet up where we introduced ourselves, role-played, and did team building exercises and there was a 1 on 1 interview. By the end of the week we were told whether we made it to the final step, a Skype interview, or not.

Interview Question – Roleplaying: 1. A group of guests are locked out of a place they have booked and cannot contact the host. What do you say to them? 2. A person is staying in a place where a dog has defecated on their dress, what do you do? The host denies any wrong doing, what do you say? 3. A host has 4 people staying at their place but believes their guests may have more people than that and is worried their neighbors will know and isn't happy. What do you do?   View Answer


8 people found this helpful

No Offer

Negative Experience

Difficult Interview

Data Scientist Interview

Data Scientist

I applied through an employee referral and the process took 1 week - interviewed at Airbnb in April 2013.

Interview Details – A friend of mine had recently started working at Airbnb and they put me in touch directly with the hiring manager of the data science team. A referral is the quickest way to get an interview; I had applied to Airbnb weeks earlier and still hadn’t heard a peep.

I had a pleasant half hour chat onsite with the hiring manager, who offered the option of coming for an onsite tour or a phone interview. It went well enough, and by the time I’d left the office, we’d tentatively planned a full onsite interview for the following week.

The on-site interview was to be structured as follows: in the morning, I’d work on some basic data manipulation tasks under the guidance of the 2nd-in-command of the data science team. Following that, there’d be a half hour chat with him and another senior member of the team. Then, lunch with the whole team. In the afternoon, I’d have 3 hours to work on the “challenge problem”, an open-ended question in which I’d go through their past data to try and answer a question related to running their business more smoothly. At the end of the day, I would present my findings to the whole data science team.

When I showed up that morning, Mr. 2nd-in-Command wasn’t available. The hiring manager himself, who seemed annoyed at having to intervene, got me set up at a standing workstation just a few feet away from where the data science team sat. You have the choice of using STATA, R or MySQL. After an hour or so, I’d finished the initial problems, and it was time for the chat with Mr. Second-in-Command and the other senior team member. Both were busy with meetings, so the hiring manager suggested I get an early start on the “challenge problem” before lunch.

Working at a standing workstation got exhausting after a while. I asked the hiring manager for a chair so I could rest, but he never mentioned that by pulling a lever, the standing workstation could transform into a desk I could sit at. I didn’t figure that part out till mid-afternoon, when I saw someone nearby did the same.

Airbnb’s data science team consisted of about 10 people. I found them to be extremely bright and a bit introverted. On a couple occasions during the afternoon, I walked over to the data science desks to chat and see what they were working on, but no one seemed to take the slightest notice that I was there. I asked Mr. Second-in-Command about the “chat” we were supposed to have earlier in the day. Looking as if I had blindsided him, he checked his calendar, then walked over to my standing workstation, asked me a couple questions about my background and whether I had any issues with the data challenge, then proceeded back to his desk.

The “challenge problem” was simple in principle yet challenging, since there were so many ways to approach it. You only have 3 hours to do it, and it can take a good chunk of that to read in and understand the data. I wasn’t happy with the approach I took, but as the clock ticked I felt too committed to change anything. In hindsight, it would have been better to take a step back and think more creatively before diving in and trying the first thing that came to mind.

At 4:30pm, Mr. 2nd-in-Command rounded up the data science team for my presentation. 8 people attended, not including the hiring manager, who was busy in meetings. 4 people brought their laptops and buried their noses in them and I had to fight for their attention. The team didn’t seem very impressed by my presentation, and by the time I was done it was clear I wasn’t getting any further in the interview process.

I was disappointed in the day. Part of that was feeling like I could have done better on the data challenge, but I also felt let down by the process. It was less of an interview, and more of a skills test under pressure. In a way, that’s a good thing because they can see what you’re capable of. But it also feels like they’re giving you the cold shoulder as a candidate, as you’re spending all day on the skills test, and don’t get much of a chance to talk to anyone on the team. Lunch is only 30 minutes, and your mind is busy trying to think of solutions to the challenge problem. It also doesn’t help when neither of the 2 people who are supposed to interview you bother to do so. Given how little time I spent talking to people, I wonder why they don’t just give the skills test remotely, so you don’t have to take a day off work to do it.

I know it’s a data scientist job and it’s mostly technically focused, but I was hoping that Airbnb would have been more fun to interview at. When I asked the team what they did as a team for fun, their reply was that generally, every other team besides data science was more fun to hang out with, and they hadn’t done anything as a team in a long time.

It took 2 weeks for a recruiter to get back to me. Although an offer from Airbnb would have been hard to turn down because of their success and reputation, part of me wonders if I would have enjoyed it.

Interview Question – I won't reveal the challenge question, but when you get it, take a step back and don't rush yourself. It's more important to have a good idea and know how to execute it, rather than trying to execute everything and realizing you took the wrong approach.   Answer Question


2 people found this helpful

No Offer

Negative Experience

Difficult Interview

Talent Acquisition Lead Interview

Talent Acquisition Lead
San Francisco, CA

I interviewed at Airbnb in September 2012.

Interview Details – The Airbnb interviews process was lengthy, repetitive and a number of the interviewers struggled to turn up on time.
I had 9 interviews in total spread out over 3 days. The interview process ended with me meeting two of the founders. Both came across well but one turned up over an hour late. Of course they are busy but this was both disappointing and off putting. The final founder who I was due to meet was unable to meet with me so I was told I'd have to come back.
After chasing up numerous times I was told after waiting over a week that one of the founders thought I wouldn't fit in culturally (this is even after I went out for beers with some of the engineers).
Ultimately I was very keen to work for Airbnb but the process left me feeling I'd been messed about and treated poorly.
Sadly from reading other reviews this seems to be a theme throughout. I suggest that the founders move on from interviewing the employees as it surely cannot be sustainable. Particularly when people are coming away with similarly disappointing candidate experiences.

Interview Question – Sell Airbnb to me as if I was an Engineer   Answer Question


2 people found this helpful

No Offer

Positive Experience

Difficult Interview

Customer Experience Specialist Interview

Customer Experience Specialist
Dublin, Dublin (Ireland)

I applied online - interviewed at Airbnb in March 2014.

Interview Details – I participate in the hiring meet up. The same day I got an email saying that I was successful and they arranged two skype interviews for the next week. The first skype interview the was delayed 40 min, and when I had the chance to talk with the designated person, I had the feeling that she was too busy and not playing to much attention to what I was saying. The next skype interview was in time and went well.
I heard from them after 1 week and I was invited for a interview in the office. I was interviewed by 4 people, 30 minutes each. I was quite hard, I was exhausted at the end.

Interview Question – How would I prefer to describe/explain a situation: with words (write) or a picture.   Answer Question


No Offer

Neutral Experience

Difficult Interview

Recruiter Interview

Recruiter
Portland, OR

I applied online and the process took 1 week - interviewed at Airbnb in July 2014.

Interview Details – Initial ad, followed by HireArt videos. If they like your videos enough, they will schedule a phone interview, then an in-person. The recruiter is very hands-off, and doesn't touch your application until after the HireArt team reviews your video answers. The phone interview didn't really seem to get a grasp of what I could bring to the organization, and the questions were somewhat all over the place.

Interview Question – The most difficult thing for me was that they kept talking about how important culture was, but didn't even ask any questions about me, personally.   Answer Question


1 person found this helpful

No Offer

Neutral Experience

Difficult Interview

Junior Account Executive Interview

Junior Account Executive

I applied online and the process took 5 weeks - interviewed at Airbnb.

Interview Details – The interview process began with a video interview. There were about 5 questions that you record your response to, and you have the option to re-record your response one time if you don't like your first response. After this, there will be a phone interview with one of the Junior Account Executives that consists of a role play. In the role play, you either 1) speak with someone who has never heard of Airbnb to try and get them to become a host (cold call) or 2) speak with someone who is a host but is not active.

Next, there is an on-site interview. This was the hardest portion of the process as you meet with the hiring manager and different members of the team individually. There were no oddball interview questions; they just want to make sure you are interested in essentially cold calling all day and that you love Airbnb and what it embodies. Unfortunately, the position was "put on hold" through the holidays and I did not receive an offer. The whole interview process took a little over a month. I do believe that the next step would have been meeting the founders, so be prepared for that!

Interview Question – If you could pick one public person to embody who you stand for, who would that be? Why are you interested in cold calling?   Answer Question

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