Airbnb Interview Questions

Updated Jun 26, 2015
196 Interview Reviews

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  1.  

    Experience Designer Interview

    Anonymous Employee
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through other source. The process took 2 weeksinterviewed at Airbnb in May 2015.

    Interview

    Was reached out to by email, brought in for coffee, followed up with phone call, scheduled an all-day portfolio review followed by 6 interviews.

    After being told I'd receive a followup next day, I didn't receive any responses for a week (after multiple email exchanges previously) finally found out there wasn't a fit over phone call.

    *Tip for Airbnb: You're good at making candidates feel like "they are a part of the family" up to the end of the interviews AKA Being a good "host". You're terrible at anything that happens thereafter (non-communicative) and you leave candidates feeling forgotten about.

    Work on more transparent communication between candidates and the recruiting team, and you'll increase your acceptance rate.

    Interview Questions

  2. Helpful (5)  

    No Offer
    Negative Experience

    Application

    I applied online – interviewed at Airbnb.

    Interview

    I was contacted by an internal recruiter who scheduled an initial interview with me. An hour before she said "an unexpected, yet essential, meeting" popped up on her calendar and she needed to reschedule for 3 hours later. I cordially agreed and waited for 40 minutes and received no call.

    I would have called directly to leave a message, but she didn't even leave her phone number in her email signature. I sent an email in response but still haven't received anything back. The experience was so unprofessional and rather rude for such a great company. Very unexpected and disappointing.

  3. Helpful (6)  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied online – interviewed at Airbnb (San Francisco, CA) in April 2015.

    Interview

    This was one bad experience. I have interviewed at many places- big and small companies and experience at AirBnb is easily the worst. I applied online and HR called to schedule a phone interview. We went back and forth and they could not interview on the dates I had provided. I was going to be in SF for something else the next week and they suggested that I come onsite directly for onsite interviews as the phone interview dates were not working out. So I extended my stay (my own expenses as I am not a local candidate) and got ready for onsite interviews. When I went there, and asked for the agenda - the HR tells me - that its going to be just 1 interview - similar to a phone interview except that its going to be in person. I was shocked. I showed them the email where they confirmed me for onsite and they simply stated it was a communication mishap. This costed me heavily in terms of time and money. The HR seemed very careless and inefficient.

    As for the interview, the interviewer asked me a Dynamic Programming question (hard one) and said - he didn't care how I implemented it but just wanted a working code in 30 mins. I tried and was very close to the solution. I had a minor bug in the base case of my recursion. The interviewer just stood up at the 30 min mark and left abruptly. I came out and quickly tried the solution in my laptop. I was able to complete it and get it working in another 5 mins. But from the looks of it, there is no credit for implementation idea, thought process or any such thing.

    Overall, very negative experience.

    Interview Questions

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  5. Helpful (4)  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 4+ weeksinterviewed at Airbnb (San Francisco, CA) in April 2015.

    Interview

    Recruiters at Airbnb are the most unprofessional bunch of people. They don't reply to emails for weeks and don't attend you during onsite. In my onsite, one interviewer didn't come to interview room on time, the other was busy doing her work after giving me a question. I have interviewed at big/small all kind of companies, have offers from them but this was the worst experience so far. All my respect for the company gone down in drain.
    They publicize their "core values" so much, one of which is "Be a host." They were the worst host an interview candidate can get.

    Interview Questions

    • One thing I would like to remove from the Airbnb experience.   Answer Question
  6. Helpful (4)  

    Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee
    No Offer
    Negative Experience

    Interview

    I was contacted by an external recruiter and then referred to an internal recruiter at Airbnb. I had two phone interviews, but no one showed up for either of them. It was followed up by apologetic emails and asking to reschedule, but more than once? I don't think so. Just super unprofessional regardless if you are in startup mode and can't manage your schedule adequately.

  7. Helpful (3)  

    Design Recruiter Interview

    Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online – interviewed at Airbnb (San Francisco, CA).

    Interview

    The interview process is fast and the sourcer was very friendly. When brought onsite for my interview, the experience vastly changed. The first recruiter showed little no emotion or interest in speaking with me and spoke in a tone so quiet I could barely hear him. It felt like he was purposefully acting a certain way to test my personality which felt like a dishonest tactic. The second recruiter focused on my culture fit and asked meaningful questions - it was a positive experience. The third interview was very strange. They asked me to show them how I work on a day to day basis. The recruiter passed her computer to me and told me to show her. It didn't make any sense for the role I was applying for. Had I been a Designer, Engineer, or Writer, I would understand the need to conduct a skills test. Recruiting requires excellent communication and relationship building skills and a variety of soft skills that simply cant be tested this way. That round felt like a waste of time. For my final round, the last recruiter again seemed very unenthusiastic and unfriendly. By this time, I felt like the team had already made their decision has it showed on the last interviewers face.

    Interview Questions

  8. Helpful (3)  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through an employee referral. The process took a weekinterviewed at Airbnb (San Francisco, CA) in April 2015.

    Interview

    Spoke to a Recruiter and a phone screen was scheduled. The recruiter provided a link to sample phone screen questions. Questions there were good practice for the type of questions to expect (except 1). The phone screen was with an international person. After some chit chat, we got to Coderpad to do the problem. I was unable to fully code the solution in time, although I was almost there. Using Java is not a good language for timed solutions, because it's so verbose. Afterwards, I quickly got a rejection email from the recruiter.

    Interview Questions

    • Implement a circular buffer using an array.   1 Answer
  9. Helpful (2)  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 1+ weekinterviewed at Airbnb (San Francisco, CA) in April 2015.

    Interview

    Overall it was a pleasant process. Had one phone screen and being brought onsite next week. On site interview consists of 6 parts, one for past project deep dive, two front-end questions, one data structure and two cultural interviews.

    What really got me is the data structure part. I probably spend too much time on it so I couldn't finish it in time. After being rejected, I found the question is actually is one of the top 10 popular questions on leetcode, and being categorized as hard. I think if you are not a leetcoder, solving it in time does have difficulty.

    I am not comfortable after knowing that question is from leetcode, but I think that's what everybody is doing right now : pick a question from leetcode, hire an engineer that is good at leetcode.

    Interview Questions

  10. Helpful (2)  

    Anonymous Engineer Role Interview

    Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 2+ monthsinterviewed at Airbnb (San Francisco, CA) in April 2015.

    Interview

    I can only describe my interview process with Airbnb's recruiter as a constant struggle.

    My HR Rep initially reached out to me to ask for an brief phone screen. She failed to call me. I emailed her about 30 minutes after her slip-up. She gives me the cold shoulder. She emailed me two weeks later with this statement: "Apologies - an unexpected, yet essential, meeting popped up". The sad thing is, if you read a few other interview reviews here on Glassdoor, this seems to be (almost word-for-word) a pathetic excuse for Airbnb to basically say to their prospective candidates, "YEAH, we didn't care to do our jobs or to be hospitable for two weeks, but it's all cool".

    Anyway.... So she asks me for another chance to speak on the phone. Another week goes by and I speak with her on the phone. She says the next step would be for me to speak over the phone with the director of the department. Another week goes by and the director failed to call me. I immediately emailed my recruiter. She tells me that the director has called my phone and has left a voice message. Of course that wasn't true - I never had a phone call and never had any message. He likely misdialed. I insist I have not received any phone calls and that I need to speak to him about the position immediately. My recruiter yet again gives me the cold shoulder.

    At this point, I am so annoyed with my recruiter's apathetic attitude and her lack of communication that I go out of my way to actually GUESS (correctly) the department director's Airbnb email address. I write the director that my recruiter basically is useless and that he can call me anytime at his convenience. Not more than 5 hours later the director calls me. He is thrilled to speak to me and is excited to meet me in person. The next step was to meet in person, but unfortunately, I had to go through my lame recruiter. So naturally, this process was drawn out for a week and a half before hearing from her.

    Another week goes by and I meet the director at Airbnb's HQ. The interview itself was actually very relaxed. It felt like we were chatting more than we were interviewing. So in that sense, Airbnb's interview (not the interviewing process, but specifically the interview) was quite enjoyable. The director is elated at my experience and at my personality and wants to push me through to the next step, which is to speak with six staff members to see if I fit into Airbnb's culture.

    Another week goes by.

    I reenter Airbnb's HQ and speak with six different staff members. They were all friendly and seemed genuinely interested in getting to know me. The interviews were relaxed. I was asked questions relating to my personality: What's your favorite movie? What super hero would you be if you could be one? What fundraiser would you love to start? If you could give a TED Talk, what subject would you preach? Why do you want to work for Airbnb? Given the nature of my title, no one person on staff seemed to know anything technical regarding the position. In that sense, I was only asked very vague questions related to the position: "Uh, what kind of experience do you have working with Mac platforms?"

    After 3 hours and six interviews, I unexpectedly find myself meeting with my doorknob of a recruiter. I had to swallow my pride and not confront her about how disrespectful she has been and how impossible it has been to work with her. She tells me the salary for the position and tells me she will call me the next day to tell me if I were going to be hired, or not. She promised me she would call - in either case, definitively the next day - with a final answer.

    Again, and for the third time, she failed to call me. A few days go by and I email her asking to speak with her. She emails me a week later. "Apologies! We are meeting with staff midweek to determine if you are a good fit."

    She somehow manages to drag out our lackluster communication another week before sending me a pathetic, "Thanks for your interest in the position, but unfortunately, you had slightly less experience that other candidates."

    What experience was I lacking? She couldn't tell me. Naturally.

    TL;DR
    Sorry for the rant, but ultimately, the interviews themselves were easy and relaxed, but due to unprofessional staff, my interview process was a constant, miserable battle for communication which remarkably enough was somehow dragged out for over 60 days.

    Interview Questions

    • If you could give a TED Talk, on any topic, what subject would you preach to Airbnb employees?   Answer Question
  11. Helpful (2)  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through an employee referral. The process took 5 weeksinterviewed at Airbnb (San Francisco, CA) in April 2015.

    Interview

    there were 6 interviews total. 2 technical, 2 cultural and 2 were functional - showing projects. there is a lot to be found about airbnb in general on the internet, so it's easy to be prepared for the cultural interview and understand what they are looking for. I must say i also enjoyed preparing for the technical aspect of the interview, reading about the coding practices at Airbnb, their technical choices, etc.
    it went as follows: functional, lunch, technical, functional, cultural, technical, cultural. I was a bit caught off guard by the last cultural interview because taking lunch into account I assumed I had done my 6 interviews.
    technical interviews weren't very difficult, recruiters were trying to help, like spotting typos vs watching you fail. I completed the interviews feeling I had solved the problems posed. One was handling some front end interaction in javascript, the other was more about objects, context, functions, etc.
    cultural interviews were conversational. I really feel i hit it off on the first one, for the second one I was a bit tired and I didn't start so strong but we had a good talk though.
    functional interviews were me showing projects. Those were personal projects I was happy with in terms of interest and execution.

    In the end i didn't get an offer and didn't know why. recruiter delayed in giving answer, and couldn't offer feedback.

    that was really disappointing, because I don't know where i failed or what i could have done differently.

    Interview Questions

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