I don’t hook or unhook anything. I live in the vehicle itself. I have a VW caddy, standard length, high top. It fits everything I need to be comfortable. Eventually, once prices stabilize, I’ll get a big boy and live a life of luxury, but for now I’m quite liking my little one.
We’re full-time nomads and usually only have a couple of days per year without a sit (3 days last year; but we do have a lot of overlaps). It can be helpful to find out which platforms besides THS work for your destination (not sure if I can give you any hints here). We have also done workaway (private people, animal sanctuaries, alternative communities) and camping. In total we’re on over a dozen platforms. If you’re interested in vegetarianism you can also check out vegvisits. Ogrido.com is another great platform (only Europe?). Couchsurfing might also be something to look into, but it’s not everyone’s cup of tea. There are also tons of Facebook groups out there, but I don’t use them much (mostly pet sitting and workaway). If you do this for long enough you’ll also make friends and most likely be invited to stay over. Some people even offered to us that we can use their secondary houses for periods between sits. Good luck!
I know exactly what you mean. I’ve a Wordpress blog but haven’t added to it since I had to return from Oz owing to the pandemic. It was originally free then I had to start paying, probably because I’ve got too many pics on it.
I am going to whole heartedly agree. I have only ever used one other pet sitting platform in my early days and though I am registered in other sites there is just not enough of me to go around.
There is so much out there that is available. The one thing that has worked the best for me is communication and establishing relationships. Not only with the people you sit with but with our peers, people like us right here in this forum and other social networks of sitters, travelers, nomads those that live unique creative lifestyles.
There is a lot to learn, about yourself and what options one has. I am learning every day and I have never felt more free and alive.
Enjoy the journey!
Thank you so much for all of what you said and the suggestions were great!
I stumbled across your post by accident and I’ve had a lot of fun reading about your adventures. Jen and me are considering the nomad life but we need a bit of bolstering to take the plunge. There are two vital questions that I would like to hear your take on: firstly, what do you do about a “permanent” address? Where does your post go, where do you give as your contact address? (Generic I mean, not specific!). And secondly - what do you do about healthcare when your nomading? I know that if you’re ill you can get seen as a temporary resident in any GP surgery but what happens if you have longer, on-going medical needs when you have to go for check-ups, hospital appointments etc?
If we could resolve these two issues, we might be tempted to hit the road. Any advice welcome.
Hi Pearl - It has now been 16 months since we have been of no fixed abode and we have really loved it - Our only regret is not doing it earlier but obviously circumstances have to be right.
My brother has kindly let me use his address to use as our mailing address. Truth be told we get very little mail via the postal system but anything that arrives he opens and lets me know if it needs any action .
The only issue I can see that has not yet happened is if we need to hire a car in the UK. In the past when I have done this I have been asked to provide utility bills as proof of address which we no longer have - we will have to find the solution to that bridge when we get to it.
For health, I am basically winging it for as long as I can. I am 60 this year but thankfully , so far, don’t have any on going medical needs that require attention. I am still registered with my doctor in Manchester so if I felt I needed to, our plan would be to look for sits ‘up north’ to enable me to do so. It was something we thought about lot before we set off but decided if we thought about it too long we would miss my opportunity to give this lifestyle a go -
We still have an income as my husband is working remotely, I have a small pension and we are letting our apartment . We have found this is more than enough for us as our expenditure has dropped dramatically since we gave up our permanent address. - We’re not big spenders
Strangely, the most difficult thing we experienced that was holding us back was being able to get rid of the stuff we didn’t use, didn’t need and didn’t want - even though there was no question in our minds that it was just ‘stuff’ - it was really hard letting it go!
I noticed your location - We are on a sit in East Grinstead for the month of March - If that is anywhere near you and you want to meet up for a coffee and chat one day let me know.
My advice, You will never know until you try - If it feels too drastic to give everything up, dip you toe in the water and do a few months to see if it works for you both - Go for it!
That’s helpful, thank you. I had figured some of the bare bones you mentioned like getting a mate to be our postal contact but the health thing might take a bit more work. If only I was a sprightly 30 year old again! Also we appreciate your offer of a local meet when you’re down in these here parts. We are dotting about on sits and hols in March so dates are a bit vague at the mo but I’ll contact you through your blog and we can take it from there. Thanks again for the insight.
@Pearl are you American? I am, and found issues with health coverage, taxes, etc. to be challenging when I was a FT digital nomad of a certain age.
Based on the language used, I’m guessing they’re a Brit. I’m curious what tax issues you had when you were nomading.
Hi @Pearl welcome to our community forum and I see you have some great feedback and helpful insights from @Colin and other members will have advice on living a nomadic lifestyle.
I can talk to this question from experience, we were nomadic of “no fixed abode” for 6 years, having sold our Canadian home to pursue a full time pet and housesitting lifestyle. Initially we had full international health cover through my husband’s US employer, one of the reasons we felt comfortable making the decision, however this retirement benefit ceased 2 years into our travels unfortunately, we took out additional cover.
While in the UK in 2018 (we are also UK citizens) my husband was diagnosed with a potentially life threatening condition (he rarely had a cold, life happens) his condition required two lots of surgery and long term treatment (he is still under supervision) we only managed to deal with all of this because at the time our son’s GP surgery was taking patients, not all surgeries are able to, we registered as living with our son, there was also an element of luck in this scenario, which we all need at times.
COVID was a hard stop to our housesitting travel lifestyle like it was for so many. We took stock and decided it might be prudent to once again have a base, somewhere to call home just in case … our choice and the right one for us. In our experience having adequate health care cover is essential probably more so now than ever before.
We still pet and housesit and we now have a lovely home for sitters to enjoy in rural Scotland
This conversation may also be of some help to you Health and Well being when location independent Sitters - #24 by ElsieDownie
Welcome again and enjoy connecting with our members from around the world and closer to home.
Angela and the Team
These are exactly the questions I’ve been wondering about. Thanks for posting.
As I am reading the posts I notice many couples travel year around. If you are one that has sold everything to do this, what do you do if you don’t find a pet sit for a gap or period between sits? do you find an air bnb?
My family has been traveling for the last 2+ years via motorhome. It’s in storage now and we are traveling by doing house/petsits. I started applying for sits this year and we are on our 4th sit right now. The gap weeks between sits I have cabins booked through ThousandTrails.com. This was an rv membership I bought 2 years ago but they also have cabins and it gives me 50% off. A few days here or there I have hotels booked for areas I want to sightsee in.
Hi @dhott415 - We are full-time sitters and yes, if necessary we will book an Airbnb to fill any gaps between sits.
This however is not often needed.
As a couple we can occasionally overlap sits to avoid too many gaps
We are booked now until the end of September.
From Jan 1st to Sept 30th is 273 days.
From those 273 days we have been on house sits for 265 days and in Airbnb accommodation for 8 days.
( Our total cost for accommodation Jan-Sept is £658)
This question has been asked before on the Forum. Here is one such thread:
We sold everything to travel year round in our campervan so we have our tiny home on wheels for periods in between sits!
Hi Colin, quick question. When you apply for new sits that overlap with another one, do you tell either HO’s? If you do, when do you tell them. In the initial application or when you do a phone/zoom call?
I’m solo on a 4-month summer cross-country (dual-country, actually) road trip in my (small) car. I no longer have permanent residence. I work from wherever I am.
I intentionally leave gaps between sits so I have some off-leash play time. Like a few days at a resort in Reno, backpacking/camping in Colorado, the redwoods of California, Olympic National Park and British Colombia. Life is good! I have 60-70% of my nights on this trip scheduled with sits.
I fill the travel days with AirBnB, hotels, state parks or campgrounds (I have my backpacking gear), friends/family. Whatever works and depends on how many miles and days in between sits. As one of my nomadic friends says, we aren’t homeless. We are many-homed.
Some HOs will accommodate a few extra nights before or after a sit if their home is large enough. I haven’t asked for that, but it’s been offered on about half my sits. I have one sit that has an attached AirBnB, and I booked it for one extra night two days before the sit. After I told the HO that I booked it, she offered it for free, but I didn’t want to feel I was taking advantage of her hospitality and didn’t mind paying for the one night. After all, she could have rented it to someone else on AirBnB, so it seemed fair to pay for it.
Hi @IHeartAnimals , If we know we will be overlapping we tell them in our application, If we didn’t know then but do know before the video call then we tell them during the call.
If we don’t know during the video call but it becomes necessary afterwards then we often don’t mention it until they return as we don’t want to stress them into thinking that we will be leaving their pets to go elsewhere, which, of course, we are not doing.
Of all those we have told, none has ever objected