Unique and Tempting Ways to Stay for Free
Yes, housesit for someone in an exotic location. You can stay for free if you will only watch the house and perhaps water the plants. You actually are being “paid” to stay in a great location with the “free” place to stay. Some homeowners even let you use their car! A dog or cat might be thrown in for good luck.
You can travel to exotic places and do not have to worry about where to stay. You always wanted to stay in one place for more than a day. This is your chance to truly enjoy the location. Your services are always needed for more than a day. How difficult can it be? Take care of the house and live there for the time being. When the owners return, it is time for you to move on.
So many places to visit but only so much money to go around. How to see and do it all? There are so many decisions to make and so many choices you have. Perhaps you do not even know what decision to make.
- 1. Travel to exotic locations and do not worry about where you will stay.
- 2. Meet the “locals”.
- 3. Learn about and live in another part of the world.
- 4. Stay in a different location for more than a day or two.
- 5. Make acquaintances on all parts of the globe.
- 6. Your home away from home is a lot less expensive than a hotel room.
- 7. You experience non-tourist life in different countries or locales.
- 8. You can take your time and enjoy the location.
- 1. You have to stay for the amount of time scheduled. No changing your mind!
- 2. The accommodations may not be what you envisioned.
- 3. You must perform the duties you agreed to do.
- 4. Your vacation may not be during the “prime” time for the location. You may be too hot or too cold or too wet.
- 5. The sightseeing may be limited depending on where you are located.
- 6. You may not like the idiosyncrasies of living in a different location.
To get started check out the offerings from the relative websites. As a rule, there is no cost to the homeowner to find out who is willing to house sit. If you want to be the house or pet sitter, you usually have to join the website at a nominal annual fee. Then you can look at all of the offerings and decide if you want to choose one.
There are lots of sites that will allow you to be a housesitter. Three of our favorites are Trusted House Sitters, House Carers, and Home Exchange. There are others but these three fit the bill for us. Please be aware that just because you sign up to be a sitter does not mean that you will be presented with opportunities. References are important. Remember, someone is trusting you with their home and with their pets. Both are important to them. You know that you would be a great sitter but they do not know it. You may have to accept a few positions that are not in the best location until your profile shows that you are as dependable as you promise to be.
Trusted Housesitters is a site that will connect house and or pet sitters with homeowners. The program costs an annual fee of $119.00 whether you need a home sitter or pet sitter or whether you want to be that person.
The sitters and the homeowners are reviewed to be sure that the “assignment” is a good fit for both parties. After an assignment is reviewed, both parties get in touch with each other prior to the house or pet sitting job. It is a win-win for both parties. The homeowner need not worry about their home or their pets. The sitter is confident in the knowledge that the homeowner will need and respect his or her services.
This program is very popular so there is a lot to choose from. You are sure to find something that interests you. However, be forewarned, since it is so popular, there is a lot of competition for the best “jobs”. Until you build up references and experience, you may have to settle for something less than ideal. It takes time and patience.
House Carers is exactly what its title says. Their confidential matching system helps to ensure that the appropriate sitter is found for each homeowner. The homeowner can list their home for free but the house sitter pays is $55 a year.
House carers are particular about matching the right person with the right homeowner. Both parties need to feel confident with their chosen match. It is not a simple process and they stress the importance of making informed decisions.
Another great way to stay somewhere else is Home Exchange. Join the club and let someone else stay in your home. In exchange, you get to stay in their home. And it does not have to be at the same time. Choose where you want to go and give it a try. The home exchange program is a bit like AirBnB without having to pay for it. You and your “guest” communicate and you both decide if it is a doable situation. If so, make the arrangements thru home exchange and you are set to go on your vacation. You can choose the country and the time. Sometimes it is only for a long weekend at the beach and sometimes it may be in Paris for a week or two.
It is unnerving to allow someone you do not know to stay in your home but remember, they are also in the same situation. You may get to travel the globe without the hassle of where to stay or the cost of the room. You can stay in comfort in someone else’s home for a bit and save big! That dream vacation is on its way to becoming a reality.
A Final Thought
Do your research carefully. What is right for one person may not be right for you. One reason so many travelers are advocates of house sitting is that it enables the sitter to live rent-free in exchange for monitoring the house while the homeowner is away. The duties may vary and often consist of taking care of the home owner’s pets. For an animal lover, this is not a detriment but an added perk.
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