Want to Bag a Free Holiday? Housesit!

Hey Skint pals,

Hope you’re having a great summer, in spite of the soggy weather. Perhaps you’re heading abroad to escape the rain, or are holding out to see what the last-minute deals have to offer. What with the new baby Skint still boxfresh, my holiday will be a UK affair this year – a week on a farm which, handily enough, also happens to have its own pool and beauty salon. Every farm should really, don’t you think?

But I’m already longingly planning next year’s getaway to somewhere hot and I’ll definitely be checking out this find where people across Europe are looking for housesitters , the closest thing to a free holiday (apart from houseswapping) there could be. A registration fee of £19 is all that’s needed to gain access to people looking for housesitters in almost 50 countries. From villas on the beach to city penthouses, you can stay in any of them for free. Of course there’s a catch, but I think it’s a pretty teeny one – people often want housesitters to look after their pet whilst they’re away, so if you’re petrified of dogs or if cats make you sneeze your choices will be more limited but not zero. For those of us who aren’t allergic, I think looking after a cat in exchange for a free holiday is a great deal.

And here’s the bit I find most exciting: many of the housesits on offer are for fairly long periods, so if you’re able to work remotely from someone else’s place you could take an extended break for a good few weeks of the summer. Hmm, I’m already planning to flee the country next summer. . . 

how to get a free holiday

How hard can it be to look after a cat? You just take them to the beach with you, don’t you?

Of course the other best and cheapest way to bag a free holiday is good old houseswapping. I’ve considered it many times in the past and always chickened out – mainly cos I couldn’t face getting our place into pristine condition for visitors. But the lure of a totally free holiday might be enough to get me reaching for the Mr Muscle, especially as many of the homes available on house swapping websites come with pools, hot tubs and all kinds of goodies. Of the two options though, it’s housesitting that gets my vote – there aren’t the same risks to my own house, or the same amount of work, that might come with houseswapping and the idea of a long break really appeals to me. 

Do you have any other schemes on how to bag free or cheap holidays? What have you got up your sleeve that you’re willing to share? 



About Skint in the City

Skint in the City provides stylish, practical tips and advice on how to live the high life on a shoestring budget.

8 thoughts on “Want to Bag a Free Holiday? Housesit!

  1. Rachel Trigg

    Just wanted to let you know that i signed up for this website last month and have just been secured a house sit for 1 month in France – yippee! I’m lucky as i can work from anywhere so i’m moving over to enjoy the French way of life without any accommo costs. What i’ve loved is they send you a daily email alert of the latest house sits – i’ve enjoyed traveling vicariously each day from a beach house in Hawaii to a villa in Spain 😉 Worried i may never go home…. but then i won’t have to pay bills 😉

    • That’s amazing, Rachel! Isn’t house sitting such a great idea? You’re making me jealous – I’m going to search tonight for places to go! Have a fantastic time in France and let us know how it goes! x

  2. House-sitting – and that website – is a great idea! I will look into that for future vacations, or holidays, as you call them :)

    • Thanks!I can’t wait to do a house-sit – if you ever do it let me know how you go! Hope all well with you, Mr Everyday Dollar :)

  3. Susan

    House sitting is a great idea Ashley. Morvern had two lovely Australians staying in her flat for seven weeks when she went to work at the dolphin sanctuary. They looked after Sparkles and Joy really well, being cat lovers and her home was pristine when she came back.

    • Thanks Susan, that’s really good to know. Did she advertise on a housesitting website for them or already know the people who stayed at her flat? I’m really interested in the idea. Hope all well with you. x

  4. Great site-useful advice fr people in the U.S. as well-although I live in the south which is rife with farms. None of them have pools or beauty salons!

    • Ha, there aren’t many here that do either, Lauren!

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