Nothing, they say, widens your perspective of life the way travel does. When you travel you get to see new places, meet new people and make new friends. Travel introduces you to different cultures: how other people live their daily lives; worship and celebrate their festivals; work and enjoy themselves; and cope with their environment. But travel needs careful planning and can often be expensive. You have to deal with transportation costs as well as expenses for lodging, food and moving around. One way you can make travel more affordable is by house sitting.
Get rid of accommodation expenses; cut down on food bills
When you get a house sitting job, you automatically get rid of lodging expenses because you won't have to pay for hotel or motel bills. You'll get to live in a house free of charge in exchange for looking after it while the home owner is away. All you need to do is make sure that the house is safe and stays clean.
A house sitting assignment allows you to use the kitchen. You can shop for your food supplies and groceries at local markets and cook your own meals. It cuts down on restaurant bills and lets you eat in the comfort of a home.
You can earn some money while house sitting
Free lodging and cooking facilities aren't the only things you get with house sitting. If the home owner gives you additional tasks, you get paid for doing them. These can include things like forwarding mail, tending the garden, keeping the swimming pool clean, handling payment of utility bills and, at times, taking care of a pet.
With the money you earn from house sitting you can pay for tours of the area, shop for souvenirs and handicrafts, eat in special local restaurants and, generally, have a good time.
House sitting makes travel special
What makes house sitting really special is that it gives you the chance to turn your visit into a truly meaningful experience. When you house sit, you stay in a place for days, weeks or even months. This gives you plenty of time to really get into the swing of things.
You'll have the time to make good friends, get to know their families and participate in their social activities. You can get off the beaten track and discover interesting places not usually part of a regular tour. You can “go native”, find out where the best bargains are, learn to cook local food and be part of the scene. When you're house sitting in a different place, you're not just another tourist but an honest-to-goodness part of the community.
You can get a good house sitting assignment in almost any city around the world. When you've had your fill of one place, find another city for a house sitting job and broaden your horizon some more. Some people have found house sitting such a great way to see the world that they've turned it into a full-time job.
Contributed by Mel Hogan. Mel is an animal lover, blogger and travel writer who works from home. Someone else’s home that is - thanks to house sitting. He writes for the house sitting website MindaHome