Saving on travel by house-sitting during vacation


Traveling is expensive these days, as flight and hotel prices have soared.

Here are some ways to save on where you rest your head.

Mississippi native Lillian Smith is making her travel dreams come true, by making her way around the world.

But she’s not paying for pricey hotels.

The freelance graphic designer is earning her keep as she goes, by checking off her house-sitting chore list.

“I could be just caring for a house, or I could also be caring for a house and pets and plants or any variation in between,” Smith said.

Smith often uses an app called Trusted House Sitters, and usually finds places she’d like to stay for free.

“I’ve saved over $11,000 in accommodation costs and that’s a very low estimate,” Smith said.

If you’re not into working on vacation, some hotels are now offering Summer Share programs, like here at Hotel Lilien outside New York City in the Catskill Mountains, an 18-room homey hotel with eclectic furnishings and a pool.

The Summer Share program is offered weekdays and weekend, granting perks like early check-in, savings on food and drinks and unlimited weeknight stays for $99.

“We wanted to build more of a community environment. What excited us about being two hours outside of the city is that we had the chance to see some of the same faces over and over again. The summer share program is really just like that, kind of on steroids,” Jason Marcus, co-owner, of the Hotel Lilien.

Many vacation rental homes are also more available and cheaper right now — additional getaway options as the summer sun starts to set.

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