Accommodation, along with transport, is typically one of the most expensive aspects of travelling. Although you can book a night in a hostel for less than £25, it really isn’t ideal for everyone and you may have to say goodbye to a few home comforts. Many people volunteer on ranches, farms, and animal sanctuaries in return for meals and accommodation. But house sitting is an accommodation option often overlooked.
House sitting essentially involves the traveller living in and looking after a home while the owner is away, instead of booking into hotels or hostels. Many people look for house sitters to look after pets and the gardening so it’s a real bonus if you identify as an animal lover. The owners of the house are given the peace of mind knowing they’re home and pets are being cared for, whilst you can take the price of accommodation out of your travel budget. Not only that, you can save on food as your accommodation will include a kitchen for you to cook your very own meals.
There are a number of websites where you can find house sitting adverts including mindmyhouse.com and TrustedHouseitters.com that provide listings for a small fee which can vary depending on your membership plan.
10 years ago, a Canadian couple, Dalene and Peter Heck up and sold everything they owned to persue travel. They later launched a website, www.hecktictravels.com, which explains how they saved thousands in accommodation costs just by house-sitting their way across the world.
“The best part about the whole experience has been the ability to really dig in to a destination and get to understand the culture. We get to know people and visit places that regular tourists never would,” said Dalene Heck.
So if you’re looking for alternative accommodation that is within your budget range, and live a comfortable lifestyle, then house sitting could be perfect for you.