One of the things I commonly hear from sitters is that you'd like a way to network with people in your area so you have contacts to refer clients to when you aren't able to take on a booking request (hey, we all need a vacation every now and again, right?) Rover set up a Facebook group a while back to help facilitate this need; however, the problem with using Facebook for this purpose is that there was no way to localize requests (without creating several hundred city-specific groups).
As such, we here at Rover have been thinking long and hard about the best way to help serve this need. We created a new program called "Sitter-to-Sitter Referrals" that we're piloting in Seattle and Denver, and these "connect locally" discussion boards will be the gateway that drives this program forward.
Here's how it works: If you receive a booking request on Rover that you are unable to take, you can log onto this sitter community and post the request (make sure you post it in a city-specific forum so that others in your city see it). If another sitter is available and wants to take the booking, they can respond and send through their Rover profile link. You can then respond back to the owner and send through the available sitter's profile link. If the owner ends up booking with the sitter you refer, your search score will not be impacted, you provide great service to an owner, and a sitter with availability gets some business - it's a win-win-win!
For more information on how to effectively refer another sitter, please watch this short video.
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