In this instance, I would just cancel.
Is this a THS sit ?
A THS HO cannot expect you to arrive days earlier or stay days later than agreed when the sit was confirmed. It’s not clear whether you actually want the extra days or not ( I didn’t completely understand your comment about paying for accommodation) but if you do not want / are unable to arrive earlier / stay longer you can reply.
“Thank you for letting me know about your change of plans and that you will be leaving xx days earlier . - please arrange for someone to care for your pets for that time as I will be arriving on xx (date) as agreed . I have previous commitments so I will not be able to arrive any earlier / stay longer . Very much looking forward to my stay and looking after xx( pets names )
The problem is the “at the last moment” part. A day earlier I might often be able to arrange without problems but I would not appreciate such a late change unless they made it optional or gave very good reasons.
When it is further in the future I don’t mind. I have an agreed sit this autumn but the exact dates are still a bit fuzzy. The HO will buy their tickets this weekend and the dates may get changed then. I had agreed to that when we confirmed the sit.
I agree that this is a difficult situation. We try to be very clear with the homeowners before accepting the sit. Assuming we are flying in and out, we gently remind them that we need to purchase our air tickets well in advance to get the best fares, and that our arrangements will be non-refundable so we need to make sure we arrange our arrival and departure to suit their needs. This makes it clear up front that we won’t be able to easily change arrival or departure dates.
If a homeowner asked us to make changes after confirming a sit, and we were willing and able to change our schedule, I would advise the homeowner that we would be happy to accommodate their needs if they are willing to cover the extra costs of $X. If they don’t agree to pay extra costs, we would either cancel the sit altogether or if we really still wanted to do the sit and we’re willing to absorb the extra costs, we would just suck it up.
If we are driving to the sit rather than flying, we are more relaxed but we still confirm specific arrival and departure times up front. We explain to homeowners that we want to make sure we are available to stay with their pets until they arrive home to make sure their pets aren’t left alone for an extended period if they experience travel delays.
@MichelleD just say “no”. It’s not reasonable that they expect you to change all your arrangements and absorb to extra costs.
As a host; this discussion is important. If we are leaving early in the day; it might be nice to have them come a day early.
I agree: but while we were able to do that with a 6 bedroom home - not everyone has the space to do that.
We just learned the hard way to get specific dates and flight information from the clients. On a recent sit, the client had confirmed the date and time of arriving home via text, but came home a full 24 hours earlier. Yikes! From now on I will ask for dates and flight numbers. Hopefully if they look the info up, they’ll get the date right.
It’s amazing to me how many people aren’t really sure about their departure & return dates/times. Now when talking about doing a sit, I ask that the host confirm fl their flight numbers so that I am not surprised by the last-minute “Oh so sorry, can you come a day early (or later)” or the surprise early return!
@petlover We really feel for you, as we were a bit too relaxed with a repeat sit and knew the return day and rough time, we were both not working that day and drove to the sit so it was fairly flexible. Then the same thing happened the owner’s flight was actually 24 hours early, we were both working remotely and scrambling to get packed up and tidy! It was a little stressful and we now make sure we ask for the flight details so we can look them up and the exact timings. I would have died if they returned without the final clean-through!
Yeah, I don’t understand how HO do this. I am appalled at seeing how many sitters experience this more than twice.
I never confirm or even have a video chat with anyone until I have booked my flights, I also let them know of this as soon as they apply.
But I do appreciate when a sitter decides to arrive a day early and leave a day after(because they’ve had wonky delays in the past before arriving to a sit or the HO’s flights been delayed/changed).
Our trip coming up this November, the times of my flights were changed recently where we are landing very late (midnight). I sent a message to our confirmed sitter about being welcomed to stay the night or we’d be happy to pay for hotel accommodations. We do have another apartment in the city but it’s closer to downtown area and farther away than our home but we are considering staying there. Hopefully he’s good with the options we’ve provided.
I’m sure as a HO you’d just want to get home, so I’d be grateful for the choice!