The 8 Best Things About Being a Travel Nurse.
- No gossip or workplace politics.
- Making forever friends.
- More money.
- Getting paid to travel to new places.
- Gaining more resources and knowledge.
- As much time off as you want.
- Finding a permanent home.
It takes a special kind of person to be a travel nurse. Someone who loves traveling and adventure, exploring the unknown, and is capable of taking the initiative to work all on their own. Sure, I have student debt and that was a large portion of why I chose to be a travel nurse. However, I would have done this regardless of debt because of all the opportunities travel nursing presents.
Being able to work in a different hospital every thirteen weeks with all new faces, makes the negative workplace politics sort of non-existant. Three months isn’t long enough to get into the gossip that occurs at any place of work, which is refreshing. With that being said, you might learn a thing or two from these new faces that will carry with you the rest of your nursing career.
I am always surprised how quickly I attain a new friend, occasionally a new forever friend. A travel nurse can be as social as they want to be, but most often than not, you are going to meet someone you get along with. This is a blessing when traveling somewhere you originally knew no-one. Consider this your new local tour guide!
Working in different hospital networks allows you to be better equipped to using many different brands of equipment. If you work in the same department, most likely there will be similar if not the same protocols in place. The tools you use to obtain lab orders however may be something you are unfamiliar using. The more places you work, the more you will see, and the more knowledgable you will obtain to navigate through on your own.
The income you earn as a traveler can be double to triple what a staff nurse typically brings in. This makes the decision to become a travel nurse very appealing. Depending on where you are living, you may be able to save a quarter to half of the housing stipend also. For my generation, student debt can weight heavily on the new grad. I would recommend to any nurse looking to become debt free quickly, that travel nursing is the best way to do so.
During your time as a travel nurse, try and save as much money as possible. Whether it is paying off loans, saving to purchase a house, or just saving money in general; use your time as a travel nurse wisely and save, save, save!
Aside from earning more money, seeing new cities and landscapes has always been the biggest driver on what has led me to be a travel nurse. I love traveling. The fact that someone can get paid to travel for work makes it so worthwhile. Three months is a pretty good amount of time to explore an area. So enjoy!
As a nurse, you may only work three days a week, so make the most of your time off. Request specific dates off ahead of time in your contract. This is the one thing you have an advantage on compared to staff nurses. Don’t want to work a holiday? Get it in the contract! In between contracts use this opportunity to take vacations or explore more of an area. Just because you don’t have paid time off, doesn’t mean there isn’t plenty of actual time off. As a travel nurse, you actually can have as much time off as you want. Want to take a whole month off between contracts, go ahead!
Ultimately, you won't stay a travel nurses forever. So, by traveling, you may figure out where you want to stay, live, and make a life as a full time staff nurse. Keep in contact with the managers from places you enjoy working. You never know, you may come back to work there full time. If not, at least you know you have new friends and vacation spots to come back and visit!
There are so many amazing things about travel nursing. These are just some of what I love about it so far. I’m sure the longer you commit, the more reasons there are to love about it. Enjoy this unique life and be grateful for all the opportunities travel nursing provides.