Airbnb Interview Questions | Glassdoor

Airbnb Interview Questions

Interviews at Airbnb

912 Interview Reviews

Experience

Experience
46%
22%
32%

Getting an Interview

Getting an Interview
61%
17%
14%
4
2
1
1

Difficulty

3.1
Average

Difficulty

Hard
Average
Easy
  1.  

    Software Engineer (Backend) Interview

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

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. I interviewed at Airbnb (San Francisco, CA) in July 2016.

    Interview

    A phone interview which asked to solve a coding problem (coding, compile, come up with your own test, and run) within 40 minutes. The coding was not hard. But the testing phase was not clear. The interviewer didn't mention anything about how to process the input.

    The interview was mainly to find out if you can code quickly and cleanly (no bug). They didn't care about your industry experience and other stuffs on the resume. As long as you can code, you'll be fine. And they seemed to put a junior person on the interview who sometime gave wrong comment about the code. It could be part of the interview process - to see how you approach to vague/wrong description of the problem.

    Interview Questions

    • Not hard problem. Need to implement a java class with a few APIs to solve a practical problem.   2 Answers

  2. Helpful (42)  

    Data Scientist Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Declined Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview

    Interview

    I interviewed for a few top tech companies eventually choosing Linkedin, and Airbnb was a bit different from all the others. The main difference is that they *really* care a lot about you using their product.

    The interview has been described very well by their head of data science on quora. It is exactly like he says. Check it out if you got an interview there.
    Firstly, a relatively simple A/B test takehome challenge, then a phone call with the hiring manager, then 1 day on-site working on a data science challenge and finally another day onsite to check cultural fit.

    The interview is not too hard, I felt it was easier than facebook or linkedin. In order to pass the interview you need to:

    1) Be very fluent in R or Python. Both challenges (takehome and onsite) aren't super hard, but they don't give you much time. If you are not super familiar with R or Python, you won't have time to finish them.

    2) Get the collection of data science take-home challenges book and practice on it. The A/B test challenges there will help you for the takehome and the product-related ones will help you for the onsite.

    3) Use the product extensively before. To solve the onsite challenge, you must know the product well and how it works. Otherwise, it will be impossible to even understand well what the data represents.

    Interview Questions

    • One A/B test takehome challenge, one onsite data challenge and one day for cultural fit.   3 Answers
  3. Helpful (52)  

    Front End Engineer Interview

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

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 2 weeks. I interviewed at Airbnb (San Francisco, CA).

    Interview

    I went through three rounds of interviews, two phone and one on site. The support team behind the interviewing process was delightfully helpful, setting me up with everything I'd need to be prepared for the onsite interview set (weirdly) in San Francisco. I only parenthetically say "weirdly" because to me part of getting an understanding of a candidate is doing so in context, and Portland is not very similar to SF in some pretty important ways.

    My onsite interview consisted of a tour of the beautiful facility and 3 tech interviews along with 3 non tech interviews. Each segment was about 45 minutes in length.

    The non tech interviews were refreshing, as I like to talk to people in different focuses to get a better gauge of the company. All of the interviewers were very likable, but a few seemed somewhat uninterested in being there. As someone who's spent a lot of time in the hiring seat, this was a bit of a turnoff. I know interviews take a lot of time and energy, but that's not the candidate's fault.

    Even though none of the three interviewers were front end engineers (all infrastructure), two of the interviews focused on matters I would say are well centered around front end development. I sailed through those interviews with ease. They were pretty simple.

    The other was more of a comp sci focus, around a somewhat simple (in hindsight) problem. I have a problem with these questions though, as they don't gauge anything except whether a person has run into this specific algorithmic problem before and how well they remember the solution. If the company wants a computer that can spit out the ideal algo solution to a problem with seconds , there's already a pretty good one called Google. Aside from that, determining a proper algorithmic solution to a problem is a research and test cycle that should and does often take a generous amount of time to figure out, well past anything one could accomplish in 45 minutes.

    One other gripe I had is that the recruiters said I should be as comfortable as possible so I should bring my laptop and set it up with my ideal stack and ide config, but when I actually got in, all of the interviewers made me use codepen, which is glitchy at best and very clumsy to use.

    So even after sailing through the front end questions and being well liked from a personality basis, I was still rejected because of my failing the algorithm question. It stings of course, and I feel Airbnb made an unfortunate mistake, but honestly, if they really want a frontender who can prattle off algos with the drop of the hat, I guess that's what I'll learn next.


  4.  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 1 day. I interviewed at Airbnb in June 2016.

    Interview

    Phone interview with coding document. The interviewer was friendly. However, my biggest complaint is that he didn't tell me that Java's built in iterator for lists wasn't allowed in my implementation until about 20 minutes into the interview. Had I had this extra time from the start, I believe I could have written my test cases, touched up my code, and implemented the optional part.

    Interview Questions

    • Design an iterator class to iterate over a list of lists.   Answer Question

  5.  

    Software Developer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in San Francisco, CA
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 3 days. I interviewed at Airbnb (San Francisco, CA) in June 2016.

    Interview

    reached me out via email, easy phone call. then they gave me a home work and reviewed in a week. They got back to me with an negative answer but future posibilities. overall their approach was so kind. I would love to work there. I will get better and apply myself fo the future. as far as I know they have been choosen as best place to work in 2015

    Interview Questions


  6. Helpful (18)  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through an employee referral. The process took 4+ weeks. I interviewed at Airbnb (San Francisco, CA).

    Interview

    The interview process was fairly typical:

    - 20-30 minute call with a recruiter to discuss the role and next steps
    - 45 minute phone call with an engineer. For my interview, this wasn't the typical coding trivia. Instead, we went over a practical coding challenge that was relevant to the role.
    - Full day onsite, consisting of six interviews:
      1 coding exercise
      1 presentation of the solution to the coding exercise
      1 generalist coding interview
      1 past experience interview
      2 cross functional interviews (core values, behavioural type questions)

    At this point, the recruiter I was working with told me there would be one of three outcomes: an offer, a rejection, or more interviews.

    In my case, it turned out I hadn't quite convinced them, and I was asked to come back in for two more 45 minute technical interviews. These were similar in scope to the initial phone screen and the generalist coding problem.

    The office is incredible, and everyone I worked with was extremely outgoing and friendly. The questions were challenging but fair. Definitely the most relaxed and stress free I've ever felt during a job interview.

    Interview Questions

    Negotiation

    I didn't find negotiating to be necessary. Their offer was above and beyond what I had ever expected.


  7. Helpful (7)  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in San Francisco, CA
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Easy Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 2 weeks. I interviewed at Airbnb (San Francisco, CA) in May 2016.

    Interview

    The interview process was smooth enough. It was odd that I had three different recruiters talking to me at different times. I never knew who I would be speaking with at any given time. Even when I arrived, I was told to ask for a specific person. Instead of that person, a different recruiter came to meet me. However, everything was scheduled well and I was never left in limbo.

    The interview itself was fairly straight forward. The first interview was a discussion of software engineering and projects I've worked on in the past. The interviewer was nice and dug into things enough to find out if I really knew what I was talking about.

    The bad interview I had ended up ruining the entire process for me. I was interviewing for an app development position, but never actually talked to the app developers who were interviewing me. One person left me in a room by myself with vague instructions to create a search feature. After a little less than an hour and a half, I was told that time was up. By then I had created the search feature using the libraries they use and written in a way to show that I can create production-level code in an interview. It wasn't perfect, but given the time limit I did an exceptional job.

    I never spoke to or saw the person who left me in the room. Instead I spoke with two other developers who asked me a bunch of very simple questions about my approach. They never indicated anything wrong with my code or asked questions about anything specific.

    I was informed later that I did not get an offer because I did not complete the assigned task. From my perspective, I not only completed it, but I used it as an example of my knowledge of their stack and how easily I can work with it. Apparently my RecyclerView item didn't contain two views that they wanted to see. Those views were mentioned once, but never asked about when going over my approach to the task.

    I am not claiming to be the best app developer, but I do know what I am doing. If anyone had asked about those views, I would have very simply added them in an efficient way. My mistake was thinking that they were looking for a well-made search feature and not simple layout design.

    Interview Questions

    • Given an endpoint, create a search feature.   1 Answer
  8.  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through an employee referral. The process took 4+ weeks. I interviewed at Airbnb (San Francisco, CA) in May 2016.

    Interview

    Two rounds of phone interview, codes needs to be compiled and run against some fair test case, you need to get it run with none or at least minimal mistakes in given time.
    Onsite: Technical interview plus two rounds of culture fit interview, seven interviews in total. The people who interviewed me were extremely nice, and the coordinates also did a good job in showing me around the nice office building and an introduction of Airbnb's history.

    Interview Questions

    • - Technical questions is mid - difficult, do enough coding and make sure you feel comfortable coding infant of the interviewee, bring your own laptop if you prefer
      - Culture fit: Share one of your trips with us.   2 Answers

  9. Helpful (59)  

    Software Engineer Interview

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

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 2+ months. I interviewed at Airbnb (San Francisco, CA) in January 2016.

    Interview

    My on-site technical interview sessions are about 45 minutes each but the engineers’ attention span on coding sessions last about 35 minutes. So after eliminating the introduction, the explanation of the question, you should time yourself to have a complete code with correct results within 25-30 minutes. The thinking process does not count. Only code with correct output counts. They said very clear the code need to be correct.

    My second coding question is on a system integration coding problem. After googling the needed system calls for Ruby, I start coding with the top search result. On the first run, the system is blocked. Good practice told me to verify the connectivity and I spend 8 minutes to eliminate some important possibilities. I realize time is running fast. So I ask whether I can have more help. He said “I told you already but you are not listening”. When you put high pressure on the candidate, some subtle suggestion is not obvious and there are many other un-related messages. There are a few more remarks that I consider not professional or fair. At the end, he suggested me for a particular system call. Then the integration code works. Unfortunately, he also end the interview even though it was started 5 minutes late. After he left, I managed to finish the business code in 5 minutes and I emailed the code to the recruiter. But I knew it would not count.

    At first, I blame bad luck of finding the wrong Ruby API on the google search. But on the way home, I realized I should have more faith in google search than their home grown system component used for interviews. I replicate the reason why the API call is blocked in 5 minutes and duplicate their component. The first Ruby code does work with most common systems but not theirs because the way of how they want it to work. Their approach is not common for distributed and scalable system and therefore only popup later in my head.

    Their interview standard has reached a very un-healthy level. The second coding question have too many variables of going wrong in real life. With the time constraints, luck becomes a more dominate factor rather than a real life approach. There is a chance that the bar has raised too high that more top candidates are failing while more cheaters pass. The technical community is small. Sharing interview questions are far more common.

    I will not be a good candidate for them. Only the first interview contains real life industrial strength issues. For the rest of technical interviews, you should check out all those online site posting brain teasing programming question. I start wonder why we need to spend 4 years college. Experience will not pull you ahead of others. To hack those interviews, it will be easier of spending a few months intensively on those site instead.


  10. Helpful (10)  

    Front End Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through an employee referral. The process took 4+ weeks. I interviewed at Airbnb (San Francisco, CA) in April 2016.

    Interview

    Started off with a recruiter call and then a technical phone screen. On sites consisted of technical interviews and personality/fit interviews (including one over lunch). Everyone I talked to was really nice. In order to avoid bias, they don't read up anything about you prior to the interview so they can test your skills more objectively.

    The recruiter was really good at working with my schedule and planning around tight deadlines from other companies and my upcoming vacation.

    Overall, I thought the process went rather smoothly and relatively efficiently.

    Interview Questions


See What Airbnb Employees Are Saying

StarStarStarStarStar   Former Business Operations in London, England (UK)

Pros: “Great people, you'll be likely to make friends here. Culture, free food, relaxed atmosphere and quirky offices.”“Great people, you'll be likely to make friends here. Culture, free food, relaxed atmosphere and quirky offices.” – Full Review

Don't Miss Out On a Job You Love
Upload a resume to easily apply to jobs from anywhere. It's simple to set up.