The Best and the Worst Things About Travel Nursing

The Best and the Worst Things About Travel Nursing

The Best and the Worst Things About Travel Nursing

Just like any job, travel nursing has its pros and cons. Don’t get me wrong, travel nursing is an excellent job, but knowing the pros and cons will help you make the right decision. Do you plan to become a travel nurse? Has travel nursing been on your mind? Here are the pros and cons of travel nursing that you should know.

Worse Things About Travel Nursing

Before we get to the good part, we will first talk about the cons of travel nursing. It will give you an insight into why travel nursing isn’t ideal for all nurses. 

No paid time off 

Understand that not all travel nurse companies pay their nurses during their day off. It means you will not be paid if you want to go out of town to visit your friends or family during your time off or in between contracts. 

Does this also include your sick days off.? Sometimes, your living stipend can be deducted for the days you missed. This is something you need to be aware of. 

Taxes could be your nightmare.

As a travel nurse, you are constantly on the move. That said, you will be claiming your income in different places of work too. Filing multiple income tax returns can be daunting. It also needs to be clarified as different states may have other requirements for travel nurses. You could make mistakes along the way. And because of this, you might need to hire a professional to do your returns to avoid errors. So besides paying taxes, you will also pay someone to do it for you. That’s double expenses on your part. 

You’re always in new and unfamiliar places.

If you need help adjusting to a new environment, being a travel nurse can be a lot to take in. As a travel nurse, you will be assigned to unfamiliar places, and you have to learn the ropes once you get there. It means you will constantly need to learn the policies and procedures of the facilities you’re assigned to. You will also need to familiarize yourself with the area you’re temporarily living in. And if you find this uncomfortable, it will be a struggle for you.. 

Pay rates may vary.

Besides the possibility of not getting paid on your day off, you will also have to deal with varying pay rates. Understand that not all travel nursing companies pay their nurses the same rates. Some of them may offer lower pay, but you have benefits, while others may pay higher but offer no r benefits. Some states also offer higher wages for travel nurses, while others only pay a little. If you prefer earning fixed wages, there may be better opportunities than travel nursing. 

The “new guy” role

Since this job includes traveling to different places for work, there’s a stigma of being the “newbie” on the job. There’s nothing wrong with being the new guy on the job, but it can get tiring to constantly be treated as someone new or not really part of the unit. it also feels lonely when you’re alone in a new setting, and making friends can be challenging. Even if you’re a good person who wants to interact with people, it may still be difficult to fit in. So you have to take time to adjust to flying solo. 

Work assignments can sometimes suck

As the new guy on the team, you will sometimes get assigned the worst patient load.. Sure, you may not care too much because it’s part of the job, but sometimes, you don’t want to be the one that always gets the worst assignment. It may not always be the case, but you can’t avoid it. You’ll eventually get assigned to a set that no one wants. 

The work schedule is not always favorable.

Your job is to fill in as additional nursing staff to healthcare facilities that need help. It also means that you need to work their schedule. There will be times when you’re assigned hours you don’t like or on days you don’t want. It will affect your schedule and plans in many ways. Most of the time, you will be working the night shifts too. If this bothers you, it may be difficult to adjust to in the long run. 

Floating assignments

Your assignment as a travel nurse brings you to many places, but at the same time, it also gives you assignments you won’t like. One of these is being assigned as a float nurse. Although you’re supposed to be placed in a specific area, you will also be assigned as a float nurse due to staff shortage. 

As a float nurse, you’re sent to another unit to help as a staff besides the unit you were assigned to first. And their healthcare facilities have policies in which travel nurses are the first to float around units. That said, you will have to learn everything about the unit you float to and be the new nurse in a new place all over again. So, if you don’t want to do this kind of assignment, you may have to think twice about becoming a travel nurse. 

Licensing issues

Each state has a different licensing requirement for travel nurses. Some require their state license, while others are okay with your current one. But as you progress into your travel nurse career, you will need a couple of licenses in different states, and obtaining them can be challenging and costly. And if you choose to avoid getting multiple licenses, this can limit your contract choices. So, not only is it costly, but it’s also time-consuming to complete. 

A contract can be canceled at any time.

There will be times when your contract gets canceled before it even starts. It could be because the hospital you’re assigned to feels like they no longer need to fill in the travel nurse position. When this happens, you end up with no job. It’s even uncomfortable when you’re already in the location waiting for your shift to start, then all of a sudden, your contract gets canceled. What will you do then? This is one disadvantage of travel nursing that you need to be prepared for. You must have a backup plan in case this happens. 

Homesickness is an issue.

When you’re a new travel nurse, being homesick is normal. But if you still get homesick even after years of being a travel nurse, there may be a bigger issue. Accepting a contract in a location near your family and friends may ease this longing. However, your travel nurse assignments may only sometimes be near your home. If this is going to be an issue for you, you need to rethink your decision to become a travel nurse. 

Best Things About Travel Nursing

Travel nursing has some disadvantages, but it is also very rewarding. If you love nursing and traveling, this is your ideal job. So, what are the advantages of being a travel nurse? Here’s what you need to know. 

There’s job security.

Travel nurses will always have a job. There’s a need for nurses all over the country. Remember that we’re still dealing with the pandemic, and nurses must care for these complex patients. Hospitals always need nurses, and there will be vacancies to fill. The number of nurse retirees and nurses that left the profession because of the pandemic is countless. So, the need for staff nurses is always there. Travel nurses will never be out of jobs in the future, that’s for sure. 

Pay is Great

One of the best advantages of being a travel nurse is earning a six-figure salary.. In some cases, some hospitals can even increase the travel nurse’s pay if they need staff. It’s an excellent opportunity to grab. You can expect to get paid higher than the permanent employees at any hospital you’re hired in.. 

The chance to travel 

Travel nursing is an excellent option for you if you’re a nurse with a wanderlust. By the job title itself, you always have the chance to travel all over the country. Not only do you get to travel, but you can also live in different places where you’re assigned. If you love working and exploring various places, this is your dream job. 

No workplace politics

Drama at work is inevitable. It is a real problem when you stay in one job and work with the same people for years. Be a travel nurse to avoid getting tangled in workplace politics. All you have to do is show up for work, get paid, and leave. You don’t have to attend meetings, participate in clubs, or deal with the politics of your unit. Sounds like a dream to me. 

Meeting and making new friends.

You will always be the new nurse as a travel nurse, but you can always make friends. Traveling as a nurse is more fun when you meet new people and make friends. The experience becomes more memorable. Not only do you get to meet people, but you also make connections. And these connections can help your career in the future. Now that’s a win-win situation! 

It teaches you life skills.

When you become a travel nurse, you will find yourself in situations that are not normal. You also leave the comforts of your home and everything that you know. As a travel nurse, you set out into the unknown. You will have to use every survival and critical thinking skill you know to adapt to the changes and new environment. It also enhances your communication skills and builds your resilience. 

There’s flexibility

You may not get paid on your day off, but you have control over your working hours. It is one of the advantages of this job. Unlike permanent positions, travel nurses can apply for vacation and get certain days off in their schedules. You can plan as many activities as possible because you can choose which days you want to work and days to slack off. If this is your kind of thing, we recommend becoming a travel nurse today. 


Your travel expenses, uniforms, and nursing license expenses can be reimbursed by the company that hired you. So, besides your take-home salary, you also have additional payments through reimbursements. It’s like starting your career for free.

Your Takeaway

Being a travel nurse is a mixture of leisure and work. It may be challenging at first, but as your work pushes on, you will realize it’s not all bad. Travel nursing has many benefits if you like to be on the go and enjoy working as a nurse. It’s a practical job if you wish to remain untied to long-term positions. So, why not try it for a couple of months and see how it goes? You’ll never know what’s in store for you!

Time Off as a Travel Nurse: 6 Ways to Spend It

Time Off as a Travel Nurse: 6 Ways to Spend It

Time Off as a Travel Nurse: 6 Ways to Spend It

How do you spend time off as a travel nurse? Do you even enjoy your day-offs? If you are a nurse interested in working as a travel nurse, your days off are essential. Here’s how you can make sure that your day off counts well.

Your Time Off as s Travel Nurse

As a nurse, taking a time off is vital. You are not a robot. You are a human being with feelings and emotions. We understand that our jobs can be demanding but you don’t need to wait for burnout. You must take care of yourself so you can continue to help and care for others.

Working as a travel nurse has its perks and a day off is as good as a holiday. Taking time off is essential not only for your health but also for you to enjoy the area of your assignment!

If this is your first time working as a travel nurse, a day off is exciting. And to make your first day off count, these tips will help you make the most of it, check it out!

#1. Enjoy the Fresh Air

There’s nothing more exciting than getting out of a long shift, no matter how tired you are, it’s always exciting to leave work. And the moment you set foot outside the hospital and be greeted by the crisp air is refreshing! 

As a nurse, your job requires you to be inside the healthcare facility for long hours. So, on your time off, you must enjoy the sunlight. Take a walk, go for a run or simply explore your surroundings.

Familiarize yourself with the location. Know where to go and find places to check out if you are into outdoor activities. 

#2. Explore the Area

A travel nurse often relocates for work, and if you happen to be in a location that you haven’t been assigned before, go out and explore it. Getting to know your surroundings is the best way to feel like a local. 

Remember, it will be your home for the next few weeks! Knowing where to go is a must. It will make your work more enjoyable. Find places where you can do something fun. It might just become one of your favorite destinations to visit again one day. 

#3. Go out with friends

As a travel nurse, you spend most of your time with patients and doing nursing duties. On your day off, you can spend time with friends.

Exploring the city is a lot of fun when you have company. Socializing with other people is also good for your mental health. And as someone who travels a lot for work, it is an excellent way to spend your time off. 

#4. Make advance plans for the week

Of course, your time off is the perfect day to plan your week. Your first week of working may be a bit chaotic, but it will be easier for you to adjust as you get settled in. 

Take time to map out your days. Check if you have enough scrub suits for the week. Make sure you also have enough food to last. Planning your schedule will help minimize your stress. 

#5. Feed your mind

Just because you are on time off means must be lazy for the rest of the day. Well, you can do that too. But you can also feed your mind. SAnd by feeding your mind, I mean finding a way to expand it. 

Find time to read something on your day off. It could be nursing books to help increase your knowledge or watching educational videos to help you with work.

You can also take classes that suit your liking. If you like art, take art classes; photography classes can also ignite your passion for taking pictures. Anything is possible, as long as you have time, of course. 

Your time off is an excellent way to pursue a new hobby or expand what you already know. How you spend it is entirely up to you. 

#6. Relax!

Your time off is an excellent time to, you guessed it, relax, of course! Working as a nurse often deprives you of sleep let alone being a travel nurse. So, take time to catch up with rest and sleep as much as possible. 

A day off is a good time to unplug from the world too. Go off your social media, shut off your phone, rest your mind, avoid reading stressful news – generally, take a break from everything! 

Your Time Off as a Travel Nurse Matters

A day off is not enough to recover, but it is enough to give you the recharge you need. Travel nurses are always on the go, but take the time to rest when you have it. Learn how to slow down and take care of yourself. 

As you adjust to your travel nursing job, things will get easier. Spend time with yourself; remember, self-care is essential! Take care of yourself so you can continue to care for others. 


Travel Nursing: Housing, Travel, and Transportation

Travel Nursing: Housing, Travel, and Transportation

Travel Nursing: Housing, Travel, and Transportation

When you accept your travel nursing contract you are going to need to establish travel nursing housing, transportation, and travel. If you decide to go with the option of finding your own housing you are in for a project, but it will increase your income in the long run. You’re going to need to devote some time to figuring out where you want to live, how you’ll get there, and what you will be doing there. 


When looking to find a home for your travel nursing assignment there are many things to consider. 

  1. Proximity to the job. You are going to run into a lot of homes and condos that are available to rent or lease. The first question that arises is how long and far are you willing to drive. If you wish to stay closer to the facility you are going to limit yourself on what you can do for fun but that’s completely fine, sacrifices have to be made.
  2. Proximity to activities. If you accepted a travel nursing contract in a location you want to explore this might be a deciding factor for you. If you are ok to drive to work for 30min+ this will expand your housing options. Did you accept the contract because you also wanted to have a mini-vacation? Then you should be ok with driving to work for a greater period of time so that you can take full advantage of your time off, plus living further from your assignment expands your housing search. Live by the beach if you want to try water activities or stay near a major city to enjoy its museums and nightlife. 
  3. The cost. This will be the major factor in your decision on where to house. You need to do a cost-save analysis to make sure that the place you want to stay in also fits your budget. Your goal as a travel nurse is to not only enjoy it but also make some money. Make sure you are still able to save and enjoy your hobbies. Remember to see if utilities are also covered by tinder the rent or lease agreement. 
  4. Necessities. You also have to think about what are your necessities. What are the things you must have? For example when we took on a travel nursing contract we needed either a pool or a hot tub. Maybe you want to be near a specific park, stadium,  pier, or beach. 


It’s fairly accurate to say that since you are taking on a travel nursing contract you are either into traveling or you want to make some more money. For your travel nursing assignment, it is always beneficial to get an idea of what you want to do or visit. You may only be in that area for the length of the contract and you may never return. You want to make the best of your travels.

The quickest way to learn about a city is to look it up and find out its most popular places. From there you can meet locals and learn what they enjoy doing in that city. A great resource on what to do during your travels is to talk to your coworkers. They are going to know where everything is, the best places to get brunch, the trails with the highest points, where to see a waterfall, or even which parks are the best.

What we find helpful is devoting one day a week to an activity. You should also make a schedule for when to do activities as well as a list of activities you want to do.


Now you need to consider how you’re going to get to the place you will be living at. There are a few options for you. 

  1. You can drive your car. This is going to be the least costly method. You need to consider how long your drive will be and the amount of gas. You also need to consider if you want to add all the miles you will be putting in your car if you decide to travel far away. The other key point is that you will not be able to pack as many things because you won’t have the option of extra luggage during a flight. This is a great choice for someone that packs light and enjoys road trips.
  2. Ship your car and fly. This is a good idea when you don’t like being in a car for long periods of time. This is also going to cost a significant amount more than just driving. Shipping a car can cost over a thousand dollars depending on the season, we recommend looking at different transportation companies and comparing their rate. The plane ticket can also be expensive and we recommend shopping around for a good price. This is also the more comfortable route. When flying you’re also going to be able to bring luggage with you but remember that costs too, plus you can pack up your car before it gets shipped. 
  3. Fly and get a rental car. This is also a great method if you are traveling with a friend and can last in one car. You can fly to your destination and pick up a rental car which can cost about the same as shipping your car. You are a little limited on the things you can bring because you won’t be able to stuff your car before it gets shipped. This is the most convenient method but be sure to shop around for the best rental prices,

In Closing

As a traveling nurse, there are a lot of things to consider when it comes to travel nursing housing, travel, and transportation. Travel nursing takes a lot of preparation and planning. Make sure to devote a lot of time to research and communication so you are satisfied with your decisions.   

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