Woman Travels the World By Exchanging Cat-Sitting for Free Accommodation


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Where would you go in the world if you didn't have to pay for accommodation? One writer from Australia named Madolline Gourley has found a clever traveling hack that allows her to exchange cat-sitting services for a place to stay. In doing so, Gourley has been able to hop across Australia and the U.S. by only paying for her airfare.

“I discovered house sitting a few years ago, and since then it's allowed me to stay in cities all over the United States and Australia for next to nothing. As a sitter, you house or pet sit for ‘free' in exchange for accommodation,” Gourley explains. The 31-year-old writer finds jobs via TrustedHouseSitters, where her years of experience with taking care of cats helps her beat the fierce competition. She has her own blog called One Cat At a Time, where she discusses her many destinations and answers people's questions about how they can get started, too. Gourley estimates that she's saved about $28,000 in accommodation fare so far.

“While house and cat sitting for strangers has saved me thousands of dollars on accommodation-related expenses, I still need money to pay for things like my airfares to and from sits. That means I spend the other, less exciting part of my life working a regular Monday to Friday job in Brisbane, Australia, putting money aside for my next adventure,” she says on her website. Gourley's most recent trip was a 75-day expedition across the U.S., from Seattle to Brooklyn. “I’ve looked after 15 cats and nine different homes in seven cities across the country. I started out in Seattle before making my way to Austin, New York City—where I got sits in Chelsea, South Park Slope and Prospect Heights—Salt Lake City, Denver, Chicago, and Portland,” she adds. Next on her list is an extensive trip to Canada.

You can learn more about Gourley's cat-sitting business by visiting her website.

A woman from Australia named Madolline Gourley found a way to fund traveling across Australia and the U.S. by exchanging cat-sitting services for accommodation.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by @madolline

She saved $28,000 in expenses by watching people's cats for about 30 minutes a day.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by @madolline

Madolline Gourley: WebsiteInstagram
h/t: [Upworthy]

All images via Madolline Gourley.

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Margherita Cole

Margherita Cole is a Contributing Writer at My Modern Met and illustrator based in Southern California. She holds a BA in Art History with a minor in Studio Art from Wofford College, and an MA in Illustration: Authorial Practice from Falmouth University in the UK. She wrote and illustrated an instructional art book about how to draw cartoons titled 'Cartooning Made Easy: Circle, Triangle, Square' that was published by Walter Foster in 2022.
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