I can't believe how many last minute phone calls I have gotten from people who need someone to care for their pets while they are out of town. One of the first things you should do when you decide you are going away either for a day or for a month, is what are you going to do about your pets. Are you going to take them with you? Great! If not, you need to make arrangements for boarding, or a pet sitter to take care of them.
Most professional pet sitters book up fairly early during holiday season so waiting to the last day before you leave may not get you the quality of care that you want and need. Also, you need to have a consultation with the pet sitter or visit the boarding facility before you can get the situation settled and it may take a few days to arrange that.
I know plans are sometime made on the spur of the moment and that sometimes situations come up that were not planned for and you have to get away. I try to leave some flexibility in my pet sitting schedule to accommodate those types of situations, espcially for my regular clients. But I can't stress enough how important it is to make the arrangements for your pet as far in advance as possible. It will give you great peace of mind and will be one less thing to worry about as you prepare for your trip.