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We’re used to Low Cost Carriers offering you a significant volume of additional services. Want a checked bag? Click here! Want to sit together? Pay here! How about pet care whilst you’re away? Now easyJet wants to sort that for you too!
Why pet care?
easyJet says that based on their 2017 survey, 58% of respondents stated that lack of decent pet care prevented them travelling more often. Of those, 62% said the cost and concern for their pet’s welfare further stopped them from going away more.
As a dog owning traveller myself – this is a constant headache and I can totally relate to this. Friends and family can’t always be relied on to look after your pets and it is unfair to put upon them all the time. Professional kennels/catteries are expensive and there is also the added worry about whether your pets will be cared for properly and be happy whilst you are away.
I definitely find myself saying “I’d love to take advantage of that great last minute deal to X, but… THE DOGS”.
What’s the service?
easyJet has partnered with TrustedHousesitters to offer the ability to arrange a house and pet sitting service as part of the booking process.
The idea is that you sign up for the service, then connect with house/pet sitters who look after your home and pets in exchange for accommodation. No charge is made for the service. They provide you with a pet care service, allowing your pets to stay in a familiar environment, and you provide the accommodation. Some people have managed to make this a full time “occupation”, travelling around the world house sitting.
What’s the catch?
easyJet is being quite sneaky advertising this service as free. In order to access the service, you have to join TrustedHousesitters which costs £89 per year. However, even if you make use of this for just one trip away, you could easily save that much in kennel fees.
The other catch is you will essentially need to be comfortable with a stranger staying in your house. TrustedHousesitters carries out background checks and sitters are reviewed by previous “clients”. The site is essentially a matching site – the actual arrangements are made directly between yourself and the sitter. Insurance is also not covered – so you need to bear this in mind and make sure you have sufficient coverage.
This is a great example of the sharing economy. I’m sure if you have a beautiful house in a prime location – you will have no shortage of people wanting to look after your pets. If you’re in a more “average” location, then I’m a bit more sceptical of how easy it will be to find a match.
I am definitely tempted to give this a try – anyone else interested?