What is Travel Nursing?

What is Travel Nursing?

Nurse Nacole of #CarChronicles explains what it takes to become a travel nurse and gives us tips on how to on make sure your travel nursing agency is providing you with the appropriate benefits and salary.

What is Travel Nursing?

Nurse Nacole of #CarChronicles explains what it takes to become a travel nurse and gives us tips on how to on make sure your travel nursing agency is providing you with the appropriate benefits and salary.


    Hello guys. My name’s Nurse Nacole from the YouTube nursing series, #CarChronicles, and I partnered with Nursing.org to give you some insight and some advice when you’re doing travel nursing.

    The very first question is how flexible is travel nursing? Where and when can you travel?

    And in my experience as a travel nurse, you can go just about anywhere. Currently, I am doing kind of regional travel here in the Central Florida area, but I have applied to places to do work in Colorado, Seattle, and California. You can do travel nursing nationally in various states. You just have to find a staffing agency that works with your needs and the things that you require. It’s really that simple, but there are tons of assignments out there for ICU, med-surg, psyche, and OR nationally across the board so that you can find a job that matches, again, your needs.

    Question number two. What is the hard part of travel nursing?

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    And that is really you just missing your regular things that you did in your hometown and missing your family. You know, I love eating at certain places, and sometimes when I do my travel assignments the whole area is new to me. I don’t know where anything is, so that unfamiliarity of the atmosphere is a bit stressful. And on top of that, you’re missing your family. I miss my husband and my son when I go on travel assignments. We kind of FaceTime as much as we can, but again that closeness is still lacking.

    Question 3 is in my opinion, are travel nurses usually happy with their decisions?

    And in my experience that is 100% yes. When you pick a travel assignment you obviously determine the location. The pay is usually negotiated. Lodging and compensation, again, is something that’s negotiated. When travel nurses pick their assignments, they are in 100% control of the outcome of whether or not they go. I’ve never met a travel nurse who said he or she was forced to do something or they were at a location that they did not sign up for. Again, the condition and the terms are set by you.

    And that’s why I really like travel nursing, because you get a ton of say in what you’ll accept, where you’ll go and really, how the overall experience is going to be.

    The next question is how do you find a travel nursing job?

    And what I did was I googled the information. I googled travel nursing. Where I work now, a couple of nurses do travel nursing so I asked them and got some recommendations. Obviously, I would go with the recommendations first, because if you trust that person and they love the establishment, why not go straight there. But if you don’t have any recommendations, I would definitely check out Google. There are tons and tons of travel companies and establishments out there that offer really great benefits.

    And that’s another thing that people fail to ask about.
    When you’re doing a travel assignment, sometimes they offer health care. Sometimes there is a 401K and sick days. You have to ask that.

    The next question is, what should a person look for when they do inquire about a travel company as a nurse?

    And again, it comes back down to the benefits and the options.

    If you only want to work in California and this job only has assignments in Colorado, it’s not going to work. So definitely find out what locations this establishment usually works with. Some places only work in Florida. Some companies only do business in Texas. Find out that before you get too wrapped up in the process. And again, you have to ask about those benefits. Do you offer, you know, paid sick leave or a 401K or health insurance?

    Just because you’re a travel nurse does not mean that these companies do not offer these benefits, but you have to ask.

    The next question is what should you avoid when you’re looking for a travel company or an assignment?

    And my number one tip would be avoid places that are very big on information. If I’m applying to a company, I want to know how much I’m going to get paid. I don’t want to know ranges or roundabout answers. I want to know exactly. If you have all my information and I’ve completed all these competency exams and my backgrounds came back and I’m going to be ready to fly across the nation to go somewhere, why can’t you tell me how much I’m going to get paid. You also should know your pay rate and the taxes that you’re going to have to pay if any. When you go to these assignments, some places do the taxes up front, they do them on the back end. You know, when do you get paid? Do you get paid weekly? Do you get paid bi-weekly?

    These are tons of questions you’re going to have to iron out. And some places that are scams lead people on and that’s a no no. So again, when you’re looking for an agency or an assignment, make sure that they’re able to give you specifics before you uproot your life and go travel across the world.

    The final question is tips that have helped me as a traveler and when I work agency.

    And that would be to make sure that you have some type of orientation, meaning that when you start on these floors it’s already stressful enough because you don’t know where anything is. If you have to come an hour early to orient yourself to the floor, do that. Make sure you talk to the management about pass codes and getting an entry and clocking in and things like that.

    Try to iron all those things out before you clock in and you’re required to do something, because that is really going to be super stressful. And that’s sometimes a big deterrent to people who want to do agency — the stressfulness of that first day and that first orientation. So again, my number one tip would be to go an hour or two early, walk around the unit, try to get that layout, that orientation that you need to be successful overall.

    Well guys, that’s it. Be sure to read more about the travel nursing section on Nursing.org and stay tuned for more videos from me with Nursing.org.


  • Click here to read more about a career as a travel nurse.