I noticed that some flights to certain locations are really expensive right now.
Is that influencing or limiting which sits that people are applying for?
And likewise for homeowners looking for sitters on short notice, maybe not getting as many replies as usual?
I’ve seen a lot posted recently with two weeks or less notice, but the high costs of airfare I’m assuming limits sitters who are already in the area, or able to drive to the destination.
I noticed that some flights to certain locations are really expensive right now.
Yes, high airfare prices matter to me and determine if I’ll apply. I have a pretty good idea of when it’s less expensive to fly from the US to Europe and look for sit opportunities according. I haven’t really tried for Australia and New Zealand because airfare is usually more than I’ve budgeted for.
Definitely rethinking my plans for another trip to the UK to sit as flights from Australia are now crazy expensive. Even the no frills airlines e.g. Scoot are expensive, actually more so than the bigger airlines. Might need to stay in Oz unless things change. Harder now to get back to back sits which I have always done, due to this five rule, so I can’t afford to fly and not have ongoing sits lined up.
Agree @ziggy I don’t think we will be back in the UK for a while when we return to Australia unless airfares drop considerably. Also the AUD:GBP exchange rate is a shocker meaning everything is costing us double. Even after 12 weeks in the UK I still get tricked by the prices as everything has the same number in the price here as in Australia but it’s in pounds! I often catch myself thinking $9 for a glass of wine is ok, hang on that’s £9, meaning it’s $17 for a glass of wine! £19 doesn’t sound too bad for a sausage roll, a panini & 2 flat whites, hang on, that’s about $36 for lunch!! We will be looking for more affordable places to travel for sits.
Yes, airfare makes a huge difference. I’ve had a couple of HO’s charges their plans on me due to this exact reason. This is why unless it’s local I don’t apply for last minute sits. Thankfully my upcoming sit in early March to Vermont I found an inexpensive air combining my journey there with a train. I definitely avoid traveling during peak/ high season for the same reason.
I definitely take airfare into account and the new 5 limit rule has factored into that as well. Whereas before, I would consider a pricier flight to a country with at least a decent amount of sits, knowing I could easily line up more than the initial one I accepted, which may have been on the shorter side. Now that I know I will likely not have the chance to apply for every sit listed in a location, I don’t really consider doing that anymore.
Not for us, we usually drive, unless overseas but flight costs are hendering us.
For me definitely. I can’t apply for sits in Japan and Thailand yet because the airfares are expensive. Hopefully it will get better next year…
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@KC1102 exactly my point also. If I can’t line up sits I really can’t afford to take the risk of an expensive flight for one sit. This new rule has far more downsides to it than I am sure TH are aware of or ever considered.
@Crookie totally agree. I recently did three months sitting in the UK and had to be very careful with money. Actually when I posted something on Tripadvisor about everything costing double for Aussies, I was scoffed and laughed at. Nobody could actually “get” that because of the exchange rate, we basically pay double for everything in the UK. Glad to hear you saying the same things, I don’t feel so crazy now lol
@KC1102 I’m with you mate!
OMgoodness- we committed to 9 months of EU, UK, EU holidays with 4 sits lined up so far - and if that is what is waiting for us in UK then I can see “bread and treacle” coming up cannot believe some of the airfares but luckily had some points
Definitely. We just ruled out a Stockholm sit and an Albania one because the flights negated the value in going. That said, we recently flew from a Brussels sit to Prague for £21 so the cheap flights are there sometimes.
@Verityandjulian groceries from UK supermarkets are roughly the same as Australia when you do the exchange rate conversion but mostly everything else is double, particularly dining out. We haven’t eaten a steak out in 3 months as we are not going to pay £25 each (roughly $45). We do a lot of eating at home - chicken & pork is reasonably priced for stirfries & casseroles. We order most of our groceries online through Ocado and get them home delivered to our sit addresses on the day we arrive orvthe next morning. They have a great range of groceries & alcohol & good communication. If you sign up when you get here you will probably get 3 months free delivery. We’ve been here 12 weeks and will sign up under our other email address to get another 3 months free.
Petrol is double the price at £1.50 per litre instead of $1.45 a litre when we left home. If you are going to travel alot by train like we are, make sure you buy a rail card to get 30% off your fares, it pays for itself very quickly. Trainline has been our best friend! The app is very user friendly. https://www.thetrainline.com/ if a train is delayed by 15 minutes or more (which happens regularly) you can claim compensation under the delay repay scheme & get some or all of your fare back. At the moment bus fares are capped at £2 until 31 March so we are using buses alot. Hire cars are still fairly expensive but are coming down in price.
Premier Inn hotels are good for cheap nights in between sits at around £45. They are the UK’s largest hotel chain & are everywhere. They are clean & comfortable.
Lastly, we bought a UK sim card from Lebara for £20 per month, no lock in contract. We did this before leaving Australia and had it posted to our first sit address. We get unlimited local and international calls and 30Gb mobile data per month which we haven’t gone close to using.
This post ended up a bit longer than I planned! Hope it is helpful.
Thanks for the Ocado tip! We’ll be back in Battersea in May doing a repeat sit and the supermarket is a bit far to carry home a week’s shop.
@Timshazz go on to Ocado’s website and put in the address to confirm they deliver there. They seem to deliver to most places.
@Crookie @ziggy absolutely agree. We earn in Aussie $ and the UK and Ireland hurt when were there for 3 months in May/Jun/Jul last year.
@Verityandjulian we have travelled extensively in the last 15 months - I have to say, there are definitely some countries that feel a bit cheaper: Spain, Italy, France coming to mind, especially fresh produce. We had to make an ‘executive decision’ to cut out Scandinavia from our tour, as it will just hurt the pockets too much, especially because we didn’t plan on being there for very long, and then you tend to dine out and stay in short-term accommodation more, unless you’re only going for a specific housesit. I was in Scandinavia many years ago (2006) and I was shocked! I somehow doubt it got cheaper, so not taking my chances
Thank you @botvot
We are committed and luckily have some sits to keep us going, we so far haven’t found a car hire we care to pay for tho and some give you about 80-90miles per day, unheard of for Australians unless we’re in the slow lane towing a van!
We’ll just have to take it all in the vein that we started in - we need a few good trips and some hefty ticking off of bucket list items while the #rustylimbs are still working.
Thanks Crookie, it’s very helpful and timely. We head off late March and have to do the 90 days EU, leave for 90 days (so some sightseeing snd 3 gorgeous sits ) then we can go back to EU to finish off, home just before Christmas.
I have screen shot your hints and will put them to good use thank you. We’re paying high 1.70’s for ulp at the moment and in Brisbane it’s 2.00 plus so creeping up there. I’ll shoot you a message if I you don’t mind if I think of anything?? In the meantime, happy house sitting it would be great to catch up if we’re close by each other
@Verityandjulian of course, just DM me