I have not yet set up an account. I am thinking of traveling to one international city for a month. I am confused how to arrange my sit and hosting. I am unclear what I need to do to schedule someone to sit for my two dogs while, at the same time, I sit for someone else’s pet in the selected city. I do not want to make a reservation for such travel and find out I cannot find anyone to sit for my dogs. Should I just make my international reservation and schedule my sitting service via THS for that city and hope for the best that I can find someone to sit for my pets? What should I do first, book a trip and arrange to sit for someone, or first commit for someone to watch my pets? Any advice?
I am both a homeowner and a housesitter. I will first line up my sit (apply, video call, confirmation, travel logistics confirmed, etc, etc). I then make whatever travel reservations are needed for me to get to the sit. I never book a trip before I have a confirmed sit. Then, I list my house, stating my start and finish times to coincide with when I need to leave for the sit and when I will return from the sit. Of course, the more lead time you have to arrange for your own sitters, the better. I have always had at least a few weeks after confirming my sit to find my own sitter and it has always worked out. Depending on where you live (how popular your area is for sitters), you could probably manage with a smaller period of time. I never list my house and “advertise” for sitters until I have a confirmed sit and know what days I’ll need a sitter. Hope that helps.
Thank you for your response sledgejoyce. What concerns me is what happens if after I have booked a sitting in a foreign country, booked travel reservations, booked accommodations and activities (I.e. language school), and then I am unable to find a sitter for my house. I do not want to lose $ on my travel plans, nor waste my annual THS membership fee. It seems like a lot to coordinate, especially the timing. Do you really think it would all work out? Have you taken long-term trips and used the service both as a sitter and owner? Thanks.
Why don’t you try it the other way around @hewey260? Choose some dates, find a great sitter, confirm it all and then make your travel plans with that in place. Especially if the sitter can flex a few days either side as you firm it all up. We’ve done something similar with a long Thai sit we’re doing next month (we’re a Brit Turk combo) currently sitting in Sri Lanka so plenty of flight/travel/transport/cost logistics in there…
Pick your dates and find a sitter for your place first, from what you have said it sounds like nothing can take place without you doing that. Then organise other things around it, but be aware you may end up having to pay for accommodation if the dates are slightly out, but it’s just what you need to do to make it happen.
Or alternatively, if you usually have parents or friends take care of your place, then ask them if they will sit if you get stuck finding someone, so that at least you have a back up plan.
Welcome @hewey260 .
Which is the city that you are planning to travel to ? - Some cities have a lot more listings and are therefore easier to find sits than others .
A sitter planning to come to the U.K. for example will find lots of sits listed - the London ones are highly sought and filled quickly. However looking in other cities like York, Bristol , Oxford, Brighton and Cambridge will give more chances of finding a sit ( and they have language schools too ) .
As you are new to the platform you may need to do a local sit to get started and to get a review . It’s more likely that a host from overseas will accept your application when they see that you have already done a sit and got a good review . If it’s a popular city other experienced sitters will also be applying. This isn’t to put you off, I am giving you a realistic view of what to expect from THS.
So maybe start by listing your home for a short stay and even if you don’t find a sitter and you have to use a friend or pay someone to look after your pets whilst you take a weekend / week to do a local sit yourself it will likely be worth it to get that first review as a sitter.
Totally agree! As a new sitter, it might not be easy to straight away get an international sit, especially if you are looking for 1 specific city and for a very specific period…
Don’t want to put you off either, just being realistic.
A homeowner signed up for both services, listed her petsit, confirmed my family as sitters, tried to find a petsit for her family, realized how hard it was to confirm a first petsit without reviews, cancelled our confirmed sit because she couldn’t afford to go to the desired destination without her family also getting a petsit confirmed on her end. Our confirmed petsit was sixteen days that she cancelled and it really put stress on our family as we had confirmed sits both before and after those original dates. If you are going to do this in the same order, please have a place to go so that you can honor the confirmed dates with your sitter in the event you are not able to get a petsit yourself at your desired destination. It is not always easy to get the first petsit without prior reviews
If this is your first time applying to be a sitter, make sure you would be ok financially to book an Airbnb or hotel in your chosen destination before confirming a sitter for your own home.
If and only if you aren’t selected to be a pet sitter, will you still take that trip?
If you don’t want to risk not finding a sitter for your own pet and home, you can start by giving us more details about your location; type of pets, etc. And where you intend to travel to and find a pet and home to sit. There are enough sitters and home owners with a lot of experience on the forum who can guide you on how to advertise your sit and how to get a sit, depending on the locations.
If you intend to sit in the uk for example; I would not not be too worried for you as there are a lot. Now if you are travelling to Italy or Paris, it will be harder to get a sit as there are less listings there.
Same for your location: if sitters need a car for example, and it is in the USA or uk, where there’s a lot of listings, it might be harder to attract sitters.
Again, with more details we will be able to help you!
@hewey260, yes, I have committed to a sit/trip and then found my sitters, thus using the service simultaneously as a sitter and a homeowner. I guess I wasn’t realizing that you are completely new to this, on both sides, so maybe it will be more difficult for you because you have no reviews as a sitter or feedback as a homeowner, and especially even more difficult if you’re trying to go international as a first sit. I committed to an international sit for 10 days in 2022 (after having been a sitter for the 3 years prior), then posted my listing and found sitters to be at my house while I was at the international sit. I’ve also done the same for sits within the US, but drove to those, so no flights were needed. If I had not found the right sitters, then I know I have alternatives, such as Rover, other dog sitting services, boarding (yikes, the thought of it makes me quiver, but in an emergency, I guess I would do it), etc. I do not think of it as a “waste of my annual THS membership fee” if I have to use one of those alternatives because I use the platform regularly throughout the year and I feel it is well worth the cost with the amount of use I get out of it. I don’t expect that THS will always provide the right sitter for me at the right time, so I would always have a backup. To me, the timing is all important, so I nail down my sit dates first and then post my listing for sitters.
Thank you, everyone for your suggestions!
I agree with this advice. Also, @hewey260, you can collect references from others and upload them to your profile. So, for instance, if you have cared for pets for family members or friends or anything like that, you can get a little review from them and include it in your profile, and that will help your profile.