Pondering Travel Nursing? Well, here's a great article from a seasoned traveler, who also has experience on the recruiting side too, Rebecca Dickinson, L&D RN. Great insight for anyone looking at taking a traveling nurse assignment.
How do you determine where to go next in your travels?
Do you travel for Fun? Money? Family? Location?
Let's look at the advantages and specifics of each and break down how you and your recruiter can achieve what you’re expecting.
When looking for your next assignment think about the goals you are trying to meet. If it’s money be sure your recruiter knows the wage range you need to make for that assignment. Remember that at times a lower overall pay package in a lower cost of living area can actually generate more take home than a large wage in a major city. Widen your search out so that you have more options. For instance Northern California has high rates and high cost of living but if you venture a little north or south of area you can usually make just as good with the lower housing and bring home more. Some of these outer areas are also easier to get interviewed in as fewer submissions may be received. Be a bit flexible with your location in times when position needs are lower. Also take into consideration the area you are looking at. For example Rural hospitals in the South will rarely ever pay $2,500/ week for a nurse or tech unless it’s a crisis rate. Yes, you will see rates high on occasion but be prepared to think about the economic level of the area too. If your goal is to pay off debt then let your recruiter know so he/she can be sure to target jobs that meet the pay ranges you need. Recruiters don't want to waste your time (or theirs, for that matter) creating pay packages for places that do not fit your end needs. Seasons will also have an impact on rates as winter needs pay more in areas that have increased admits from Nov - April. These rates are great but they also fill very fast and you need to have a profile ready for submission at all times.
Do you travel for the adventure to see locations never visited before? Let your recruiter know what kind of adventures you enjoy. Fishing, sightseeing, mountains, museums, the list goes on forever. Your recruiter and fellow travel nurses are a great resource for off track locations that may be exactly what you are looking for.
Do you have family spread all across the US? Then travel nursing can be your ticket to family time. Pick and assignment close to where that favorite cousin or grandmother lives and spend 13 weeks instead of a weekend getting to know them. Or pick a great assignment location and fly family out to see it with you. There are so many reasons people choose travel nursing as a career and I have just touched upon a few. As a past traveler for over 18 years each of these reasons at one point or another were why I chose to travel; Family on each coast, bills to pay, and just a quest to see how others did it.
My career allowed me to be with family in good and bad times, gave me financial security, and let me meet friends I'll cherish forever.
MORE ABOUT REBECCA DICKINSON, L&D RN. Rebecca lives and breathes the travel industry. A Travel Nurse of over 20 years, she also works as an independent recruiter, in partnership with OneStaff Medical, leveraging her experience and insight to help other travelers make the most of their journeys. A true traveler, she's traveled by RV to assignments and soaks in the full experience of being "on the road." You too often hear the concern that recruiters can’t truly understand the world of a travel nurse. Well, Rebecca does and her two decades of experiences on that side of things is a testament of that. Home based out of Florida, she has traveled the country as a nurse, and is full of insightful experience that any traveling nurse could benefit from. We love her ability to understand both sides. That of “why any agency does what they do” and the processes that need to be taken, and the needs of a traveler out on the road. That insight into both sides of the industry makes her invaluable to both agencies and travelers. Got questions or would like to partner with Rebecca? Hit her up here. Tell her OneStaff sent ya ;)