Worried sitter might not turn up prior to 2 week trip

I am new to TH -previously our cats have spent their holidays in cat hotels - but this year we are away on a long planned trip to Alaska- I am concerned that for all sorts of reasons, the sitter might not be able to arrive -health-transport strikes-change of plans-
we live in London UK and I get impression that this site is mainly US based - or am I wrong?

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Hi @julian42 and welcome. Is your sitter already booked and are they travelling in from abroad? If so all you can do is keep in touch with them prior to the sit to see how their plans are progressing (without harassing them of course). The majority of sits go ahead as planned but none of us can account for unexpected events such as strikes, cancelled flights, hospitalisation etc. THS suggest having a Plan B just in case.
If I book flights or ferries to get to a housesit I always send the confirmation to the homeowner as soon as it is booked to show our serious intent. I find it puts their minds at rest.
As far as I know they are still UK based but there is a strong focus on the USA in my opinion


Hi @julian42
I wanted to add to @Twitcher advice, and to remind you to also swap personal numbers and emails, so communication is then easy. I find WhatsApp a great way to keep in constant touch.


A good way to approach the subject is to ask about their travel plans with an offer to pick them up at the airport, train station or bus station. That way you are being helpful but also asking about the details of the plans. I’ve had home owners say “ let me know when you get your travel arrangements made and we can pick you up at the (fill in appropriate location)”.


Welcome @julian42 .

I think THS is actually based in U.K. - although it covers 130 countries .

There are 10,000 THS sitters based in U.K. to choose from if it puts your mind at rest . You can send direct invitations or include in your listing that you are looking for an applicant who is based in U.K.

In addition there are sitters from overseas who spend a few months in U.K. / Europe - moving from sit to sit to explore different parts of the country . So providing your sit is not the first one on their itinerary they will already be in U.K. before your sit.
This is something you can discuss with potential sitters .


Hi @julian42
You are wrong, THS was originally set up in the UK and head office is in Brighton. It does seem as if it is US based as, since the pandemic, there have been a lot more Americans join. However, as someone else mentions, there are many UK sitters and sits in the UK.

Post Edited.

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I assume that you had a videocall with the sitter and they seemed keen, organised, etc. Right? Have they sent you details about their flight? Whenever I get a sit abroad, I book my ticket and send the pet owners all the details straightaway. If she/he has not sent them yet, just ask politely. In any case, London is very popular. You will have many applicants if you need to advertise again


Hello @julian42 and a very warm welcome to the Community Forum :slightly_smiling_face::wave:t2:

As @Twitcher mentioned, none of us can account for unexpected events, this could easily happen with someone you book who lives locally to you, just as it could with sitters from abroad and a majority of sits go ahead as planned without any issues at all.

Also as @Therese mentioned, if you can swap personal numbers and emails to make communication easier and we always find WhatsApp is the best way to stay in touch both before, during and sometimes even after the sit.

As @Smiley said TrustedHousesitters was originally set up in the UK and the head office is in Brighton. You will notice there are a vast majority of sits both in the UK and the US but there are many sits available across the world in places such as Thailand, Fiji, and Barbados to name but a few!

For reference once you are a member and once your listing is completed you can also add your TrustedHousesitters profile on to your Forum profile by following the attached link, should you wish. This will then enable others to offer you helpful advice and feedback and will also give your listing extra exposure!

If you are unsure how to do this, or if you have any questions at all, do not hesitate to ask, we are all more than happy to help.

Also, remember you can use the spyglass symbol at the top of the page next to the TrustedHousesitters logo and search for any questions that you may have as they have most likely already been answered on here and of course if not then please just ask! :blush:

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In addition to all the above which I agree with, be sure to have a backup plan, just in case of emergencies.

Hi @julian42 and yes as @botvot mentioned, always have a backup plan just incase!

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Hi there, actually THS is UK based (in Brighton) and there are plenty of UK sitters on the platform. We have completed 60+ sits and managed to get to every one, one way or another! So i wouldnt worry too much, yes things can happen but the majority of sitters (like ourselves) are a determined bunch and we know how much ppl are relying on us.


Hi @julian42 I can understand your nervousness when you have a big (expensive) adventure planned. I suggest you touch base with your confirmed sitter/s to ask how they plan to arrive at your place and mention some tips if they are using public transport. If the train strikes and/or Border Force strikes are still occuring or bad weather is forecast you could mention that to them so they are forewarned to expect delays. We live in Australia and recently completed 11 sits in 4.5 months in the UK and had to contend with these things which did cause delays. Most of our lovely owners collected us from the train stations or drove over an hour to collect us from a previous sit when the strikes and/or weather cancelled all the trains. Maybe you can offer something similiar. Communication is key at this point!

Most sitters, like us, will move heavan and earth to get to your sit, even with unforeseen obstacles thrown in their way. Make sure you have their mobile phone number/s, WhatsApp number/s and email plus give them all of yours.

You could ask for their flight number and arrival details and offer to collect them from the airport if that’s a viable option. At least you can track their flight on https://www.flightradar24.com/ to check they landed in the UK as planned or if they are delayed. This might sound stalkerish but it’s a very common thing done in the sitting community. Sitters often track their home owners on the flight home to know they have landed safely when sitters need to leave the pets before the owner gets home.

No matter how good the plans are though, you need to have a plan B just in case things go awry that neither you nor your sitters can avoid. Maybe a neighbour, friend or family can step in at the last minute if your sitters are delayed. Again, communicate, communicate, communicate!

Good luck!


As a homeowner, I always ask sitters to arrive the day before so that is something to consider. For me, it brings peace of mind to have a time buffer in case any transport issues arise, especially since I am in Romania and my sitters arrive from other countries. Thankfully, I have the space to accomodate them for the night.
As a sitter, I have had homeowners ask the same of me and once they required me to find my own accommodation for a night - yes, it cost me to do so, but the sit was a longer one and in a phenomenal location and worth it to me.

There are loads of UK based sitters on here. Me for one. :blush:

We have completed 70+ sits in 10 countries and have never let anyone down nor have any hosts cancelled on us! I can absolutely understand your concern as a first time host but assuming you have chosen your sitters well you should be able to rely on them. As others have said if you are worried check in with them asap.
We always confirm travel plans as soon as we can. Then we check in every month or so before the sit and more frequently as it gets closer especially if we’re coming from overseas. So far its always worked out!
Lots of good advice from others. Staying connected and reconfirming travel plans etc is the best way to feel reassured.

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That’s great. I was wondering if it was an option. I’d be happy to have the sitter arrive a few days early if they’re coming from a long way or if it works better for their travel arrangements. We are new to this and always nervous about the sitter even when it’s someone local.


During my chat I always clarify when a HO would like me. If flying in I always say that upon accepting a sit I’ll book flights and send the HO a screenshot of my confirmed flight details.
That way the HO knows I’m committed and they have all my flight details. A few HO’s have said they liked this. I guess being a business owner I’ve always sent a copy of my confirmed flight details to clients etc that I’m meeting.


Hi @JimOnLimon

A warm welcome to the forum. Thank you for joining the discussion.

I would also like to suggest that after your video call with any prospect sitter and subsequent agreement/confirmation, that you do swap personal phone numbers/emails as this makes for easy contact running up to the sit. I usually connect immediately on whatsapp as it makes communication so quick and easy.