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1st July
2010
written by LS Girl

Earn money on vacation without a smart phone, computer or electronic device. Learn how to get paid to go on vacation.

I’m sure there are other ways to get paid to go on vacation… I mean, I watch “Locked up Abroad”.  Luckily… you don’t need to stuff drugs down your pants (I’m being nice, that’s not where they get stuffed), or perform risky acts of violence or seemingly innocent illegal activities to get paid while on vacation.

About 5 years ago, my close friend was in a pickle.  Her career required her to be on call for 24 hours straight, and her husband worked the night shift.  You probably still don’t see the pickle, well here it is:  2 kids.  If your husband is at work, and you’re on call, you need someone “just in case”.  This was my gateway activity to getting paid to go on vacation.  I was:  “just in case”.

“Ummm… I’m in a pickle.”  That is how it started.  “Mr. Wonderful is at work, and I’m on call.  Would you consider sleeping over tonight?  Just in case I get called out.”  I did.  This led to multiple sleepovers.  Sometimes I woke up alone with the kids, sometimes she was still there.  Either way Mr. Wonderful arrived by 8am so I was able to go to work and carry on my normal routine.

After several sleepovers, and getting familiar with the house and it’s kids, pets, appliances, utilities and quirks, I became a sleepover/pickle expert.

Eventually, the hard work and long, late hours paid off for my friend, and she and Mr. Wonderful decided to take a vacation.  “Would you house-sit?”  This seemed like a no-brainer… I agreed.  I live in a very nice, but small downtown condo.  They live in a lovely home, with an olympic sized  swimming pool, gigantic TV… with MOVIE channels, a trampoline, lots of lovely decor, and at the time they had one awesome dog. They have two awesome dogs now.

We all learn from our mistakes; my first mistake was assuming that I knew everything about the house to survive there on my own.  I lasted about 3 minutes before I had to call the “just in case to the just in case” guy.  “Hi.  I’m not sure what just happened, but… the thing next to the place is making a noise like wherrrr wherrrrr wherrrr…”  He arrive moments later, and showed me the off switch.  GENIUS.

TIP:  Even if you think you know a home, be sure to schedule at least ONE “knowledge transfer” visit.. and, this is KEY:  Talk with all members of the family.  All of them.  Find out what they do, and how they do it.  Sometimes, now, I’m not naming names… but sometimes, a child might have a secret special pet in a box somewhere, and if the pet escaped, or didn’t receive food and water, might die or scare the crap out of you. Or both.

The week was fantastic.  I enjoyed the wide open space of the home, and its lovely decor.  I swam in the pool and drank cocktails on the deck.  I watched movies and maybe… I MIGHT have jumped on the trampoline.  I wasn’t too skilled with the hammock.  I’m sure the neighbors are still laughing as I leaned back and twirled around like a cartoon character and the hammock dumped me face down on the ground. It happens.

I took a couple of days off from work, and really enjoyed being there.  The upkeep was minimal with just one person, but even if you are a small family it can be fun to stay in a lovely home with lots of fun stuff.  This house sitting gig led to many additional opportunities.  It’s a nice way to get away, and earn a little cake.  Here is my advice:

Do the interviews.  Talk with the people who live there.

Write down steps, if you are being instructed how to turn something off/on, etc.  Don’t expect to remember.

Make sure you have a “just in case” person, and the number for the vet, if they have pets.

Wear a bathing suit in the pool.  I thought no one could see me… wrong!

Take a few days off during your house sitting gig, and enjoy!  Every day will seem like a vacation, because all of your daily responsibilities are gone, and even though you have new ones, they are more fun… and after you’re done you can go SWIMMING.

AIM HIGH.  Go big.  Big houses.  Big yards.  Big.  Big.  Big.

Talk about it.  When people ask what your hobbies are, or if you went on vacation, work it in to the conversation.  You’ll be AMAZED at how many people need a good house-sitter.

Here are some of my satisfied customers:


If you are interested in doing some house sitting… word of mouth is the BEST way to go.  I found this link, but most of the information on line is sketchy, at best.

http://www.housecarers.com/house_sitting_press_2.html

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