TRAVELING WITH YOUR FAMILY
Is this the best option for you? A continuation...
Not many people take vacations without another person. Whether that be a significant other, family member, child, or friend. However, most who travel for work do this alone. This is no different for traveling healthcare professionals. This latest blog, is meant to help you think through all of the options, obstacles and hurdles, in addition to previous insight we shared on the same topic (here)
Typically, each assignment here at OneStaff is 13 weeks in length. It is completely understandable to think this is easier done with family at the assignment with you. However, there are some factors that can make traveling with family more difficult than comforting.
It is nice to have people close to you with you in a new place, this is why most people don’t take vacations alone. Someone is there to help you navigate, explore, and appreciate all the new environment has to offer. Though, with a travel assignment the majority of the new environment you’ll be exploring and navigating – is the facility you’re working in. Family cannot come to work with you, and unless they’d like to vacation without you in the new spot- they typically just stay in the hotel or air bnb while you’re working. And traveling with children old enough to be alone, but still restricted to your housing may cause issues for you while at work and can be unsafe.
Furthermore, finding housing while traveling can be a bit of a search sometimes. If you are finding housing in a specific area of the country that is pretty rural, it can be hard to find a one bed option let alone multiple beds/rooms. If you are going to a high trafficked and populated area, then housing may be easier to find for a family. It is also important to keep cost in mind. How much are you getting for your housing stipend based on GSA standards? That is designed to cover housing for a singular person. Bringing a family could bring up the cost of housing per week and not allow for traveling to be as lucrative as it otherwise would have been. With that, your per diem stipend may not be enough to cover meals and incidentals for a family as it would a singular party.
One great way travelers have found a way to travel with their families, and still allow for travel positions to be lucrative is to travel in an RV. Finding RV parks is definitely easier in those rural areas, and in areas right outside bigger cities if that’s where the assignment takes you. They are spacious enough for a family to comfortably live for 13 weeks, allow for adventure and fun while you’re at work, and on your days off the whole family can find things to do together! This option is best if there is another adult present while at the assignment. Safety hazards are just as prominent for children in an RV as a hotel, if not more. Financially, RV parks are typically less expensive per month than some hotels are per week. Off seasons for these parks (fall and winter) could cause prices to increase depending on the area and weather changes. This is something to think about when exploring this option.
Traveling with families does not always mean traveling with a significant other and/or children. Furry family members are just as important! Now, while traveling with a pet is a little simpler than traveling with other human beings, there are still some things to keep in mind. Pets need almost as much attention as small children. They need to be fed, feel affection, and be able to ‘do their business’ when they need to. If you’re working a 12 HR shift, are they going to be able to hold it in? Will they know to space out their food for that long? If you’re tired when you get back to your hotel, will you have the energy to be affectionate and play? Also, finding housing options that allow pets is a bit more difficult and/or more expensive. Unless you can provide paperwork at the front desk of a hotel stating you have a service animal, you will most likely be paying a pet fee. These fees will need to be covered under your credit card for incidentals. Parallel to that if you pay a pet deposit for housing in an air bnb and there is damage from the animal, you will not get that deposit back. Of course, service animals are a necessity and service or not, animals can usually be accommodated. Just be prepared and think about each detail of the position you’re accepting before bringing a dependent with you! The job comes first for travel assignments! Read more tips about traveling with your “furry children” (here)
One of the best options to avoid the lonely feeling of traveling alone, and all the intricacy issues that can arise- is to travel with another healthcare professional! Travel partners may be able to work in the same facility, it’s a comfortable, friendly face, they understand how shifts work and don’t need special attention, you can split housing costs, and if you happen to have the same day off – let the adventure begin! Both of you can make money while traveling together. Not to mention having a ‘jam out’ partner on road trips!
- We here at OneStaff completely understand why travelers would want to travel with family. If you feel this is the best option for you, we will do all we can to get that accommodated. However, it is important to plan ahead, listen to reason, and understand any issues that could arise and be avoided.
Let us know in the comments what you think about traveling with family! How have you made it work? What is something you learned after traveling with family? Who is your favorite travel buddy?