A WOMAN who vowed never to holiday again after staying in a hostel with "no seat on the toilet" has since nabbed a free stay in a villa in Budapest.
Ellen Carter, 22, was studying for a degree in France when she decided to go travelling around Italy, Romania, Poland and Germany before a disastrous trip to Vienna, Austria.
She said: "I arrived in Vienna after midnight with two friends and we thought we were staying in a normal hostel but it was literally just a spare room in a random guy’s house."
There was no lock on the bedroom door and the room only had a mattress on the floor where Ellen and her friends slept.
She continued: "The room smelled like mildew, there was no running water in the bathroom and no seat on the toilet."
But the three friends didn't have the budget to move elsewhere, and the trip ruined Ellen's zest for travel.
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She added:"I decided I didn’t want to put myself in that position again – but with the cost of living increasing so rapidly I knew that meant I wouldn’t be travelling for the foreseeable future."
Despite her promise, when Ellen heard about Housesit Match, a global house and pet-sitting network, she secured herself and her boyfriend a 10-night stay in a 5-bedroom villa at no cost.
In exchange for her free accommodation, all Ellen had to do was walk the dog while she stayed at the Budapest mansion with a private garden and a swimming pool.
A 5-bedroom villa in Budapest can cost between £695 to over £1,000 per night.
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She said: "It was much nicer than staying in a hostel and wondering if we had to escape at two in the morning."
Another couple who are professional house and pet sitters in the UK save themselves £1,000 each month by living in other people's homes for free.
After Claire Goodall and Michael Ashfield ditched the traditional nine to five they travelled the world before returning to the UK and making the most of the free stays.
Another couple Austin Andrews and Jori Kerr have used pet sitting service to fulfil their dreams of travelling the world and have since visited Germany, Gibraltar, Grenada, and the US.
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