Impossible to cover Christmas?

Hello all, I’m new to this service so a bit nervous about finding someone over the holiday!
I’ve read a few posts about the travel dates not being ideal if they fall on really busy dates (like Dec 31/Jan 1, which is when I’m back of course). How can I let sitters know upfront that I’m ok with them staying for a day or 2 extra if it suits them?
I’ve tried to make my posting as complete as possible with lots of pictures and info about where I live (which is a lovely location if I do say so myself!) but I’ve had no interest at all :cry: What are sitters looking for? What can I do to entice someone here?!?

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Hi. Can you link your listing to your profile, so we can see if there are any obvious points that could use improvement?
The things that draw me to a listing (and there will no doubt be sitters that don’t see it this way):

  • Post a pic of the pets early on, if not the first photo. If I fall in love with your pet, I’ll likely try to find a way to make that work out. A house photo as first pic may not have the same effect.

  • Show clear interior shots, which include where the sitter will be sleeping. I am very flexible on a lot of things, but need a comfortable and large bed. My chiropractor would be making a ton of money if I tried sleeping on a pull-out couch. :slight_smile:

  • Indicate how far your home is from a supermarket/train station/bus station etc. or if there is reliable taxi or uber/lyft service.

  • Indicate if there is smoking in the home. I’m a nonsmoker and couldn’t consider a smoking household, no matter how much I wanted to sit for a pet.

I know a lot of sitters have already confirmed their plans for the holidays, but I’m sure there are plenty of others that would be able to accept on shorter notice. It’s not too late.


Hi Harris2 - thanks for the advice! My listing is now linked in my profile.

I can’t make the dog pictures come first as the site puts all the house pics first… Maybe I need to get a good one of all of them in the living room :smiley:

It was tricky getting ‘good’ photos due to the overall size limits. It’s weird - it gives you a space to add descriptions for the photos but then the description doesn’t seem to who anywhere? I added details about my bed as I have a super lux mattress!!

Maybe I put TOO much detail in the home & location info? I thought more was better than not enough :woman_shrugging: I hadn’t thought about the smoking thing (as I don’t) - I’ll add that just now, thanks!

I again SUPER appreciate the advice! I’m hoping to use this service a lot as I’ve been so restricted in seeing my family in the past and this would be a great way to sort that!! I’ll keep my fingers crossed :slight_smile:


Hi. Your listing looks great. The main pic you have is beautiful. Although I loved the one of Alfie with a pig snout!
You’ve got lots of info in the posting, which I just love on any sit listing. Is there such a thing as too much info? :slight_smile: I love when homeowners talk about their pets’ personalities and behaviors too (and you did). It makes it more appealing.
The only thing you may want to reconsider is the mention of an indoor camera. They aren’t permitted, per THS rules (someone can likely chime in with a link to where that is discussed). I completely understand wanting to watch the pups while you are away, but I think a large number of sitters would feel that it is monitoring their presence too closely.

Your location sounds great; I’m sure there are plenty of people wanting to be in the Edinburgh and surrounding area. Fingers crossed for you. You’ll find the perfect sitter.

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HI @missjoy_3 Welcome to THS. :slight_smile: You offer a great description and lots of photos.
I’m a solo sitter that commonly looks for Christmas gigs (in the USA) so here are a few suggestions I’d offer:

Add type of sitters you are open to hosting: solo sitter, couples, family (with kids) or all of above. If open to families, list how many beds would be available.

If you have a photo from last Christmas that shows your decorations that you offered to put up… post it! A sitter could build up excitement to be in the decorated space.

Wifi - remote workers will want to know if your wifi can handle large data.

You mention list Flexible dates, but don’t describe exactly what that means. From your post, it looks like your travel dates are not set… It’s unclear that the sitter can arrive early or leave later than your dates if it helps with their travel costs. I’d recommend added this information.

Just some suggestions! :slight_smile:

I hope you get matched with the perfect sitter soon :slight_smile:

Oops - I was thinking of the camera for the sitter but can see how this could be misinterpreted! I’ve taken that off :face_with_open_eyes_and_hand_over_mouth: I’ve also moved the pics around and added a few more of the pups along with a bit about all of us in the first section.

Thanks again for the help - we are a friendly, happy bunch and am really keen to make any sitter feel at home while they’re at ours!

I might even become a sitter myself so we can travel without missing our pups too much! ** They should make a ‘house-swap’ section!! **

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The new pup pictures are great. Who doesn’t love dogs in sweaters? :slight_smile:

That’s how it starts… we were petowners first and then became sitters. Before long, you’ll be scouring the postings to see if someone has alpacas and deciding if you could build a trip out of that sit. It’s a slippery slope!!

Hi Sandra - thanks for those tips!

I’ll definitely update with what I can accommodate. I was trying to insinuate we could have a family in the house description by mentioning the sofa beds but think being more obvious may be better!

Reading through other descriptions, I thought it best to say I’m flexible but didn’t think to be explicit :thinking: I’ll be adding that as well!

What a great forum this is :smile: the advice is great - thanks so much!!

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@SitterSandy and @Harris2 have made some great suggestions. I’m also a solo sitter and have sat Christmas and Thanksgiving (US) holidays for the last few years. Ten+ days around Edinburgh would be a delight and I’d be an applicant, except I’m sitting Dec-Jan in Australia.
I also like Alfie as a pig!


:joy: Alfie is such a character, he managed that on his own!
The best part about this service is being able to show off my amazing pups - I love them so much, it’s kind of nice to know even more people get to meet them :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:
I do love the sound of alpacas though, maybe I should…:rofl:


One thing that may be putting off sitters is that Ollie can’t be left alone for more than 2 hours - but it is info a sitter would want to know before applying. How dog-friendly is Edinburgh in terms of allowing dogs in the major sites, pubs, restaurants, etc? Hope you find a great sitter for the pups this year.


Haha…you should try it. I just saw a sit with alpacas and donkeys (plus dogs and cats, I think). If it weren’t a bit off the beaten path for us, I’d consider it.

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Hmm, that might be an idea to add more info on where to go :thinking: or at least let people know there’s lots of places that allow dogs (especially since COVID restrictions lifted!) - thanks!