Human exposure to fungi results in a wide range of health outcomes, from invasive disease or allergy to immune tolerance. Inhaled fungi contact airway epithelial cells as an early event, and this host:fungal interaction can shape the eventual immunological outcome. Emerging evidence points to exposure to fungal cell wall carbohydrates in the development of allergic airway disease. Herein, we describe determinants of fungal allergenicity, and review the responses of airway epithelial cells to fungal carbohydrates. A greater understanding of the recognition of and response to fungal carbohydrates by airway epithelial cells may lead to the development of targeted therapies that ameliorate allergic airway disease.