What is a Travel Nurse?

A travel nurse is a nursing specialist who is hired to work in a specific location for a stated length of time. If you are training to become a nurse or you would like to transition to a new specialty area, you may want to consider a specialty area like traveling nursing that allows you the freedom to work throughout the nation in different healthcare settings. While a major benefit of working under a travel contract is that you can choose where you would like to work, this is not the only benefit. Here is what you need to know about travel nursing:

How Does Travel Nursing Work?

Travel nursing is a unique specialty in the field. Professionals who work in travel nursing will take different assignments through staffing firms that partner with different hospitals and healthcare settings. If you are interested in landing a job, you need to find a staffing company that has competitive pay rates, benefits, and a long list of different jobs located in different areas of the world. After prospective applicants have talked with a recruiter, they must fill out an application and submit the required reference form.

If the company is interested in doing business with you, you will be hired and asked to select a destination for your first assignment. Once you select that destination, you are expected to interview with the nursing manager by phone. As long as the manager signs off, you will then be offered the assignment and given all of the information you need to get to the facility and to settle into your new home.

What Are the Benefits of Working as a Travel Nurse?

Nursing is a fulfilling field as a whole, but travel nursing offers professionals unique benefits. Since the specialists go to a travel assignment because there is a high need, nurses who are under assignment typically make more than a general nurse who is working full-time at a single site. Not only do you receive a high salary, most staffing companies offer great medical benefits, bonuses, and an allowance for your housing and relocation costs. According to American Nurse Today, here are some of the other travel nursing benefits that you may have never considered:

  • The option to choose which area of the country you want to live in
  • A chance for clinical experience at top hospitals
  • Clinical support through the staffing company at any hour of the day
  • Tax-free travel reimbursement
  • Access to fully furnished housing as an alternative to a housing stipend
  • Opportunity to explore different areas of the world
  • Networking with new people

Why Are Travel Nursing Professionals in High Demand?

Travel nursing is an adventure. Not only can you explore, you can also make money doing what you love. All of this sounds so great that it is hard to believe that it is a career option. What you might not know is that there is a huge nursing shortage throughout the country and this is why demand for travel nurses is at an all-time high, according to USA Today. In these areas, it makes the most sense to hire experienced nurses to travel to the facility. Travel nursing is also the answer when nurses take long-term leaves.

Related Resource: Become an Emergency Room Nurse

Nursing assignments can last anywhere from a few weeks to a year at a time. To qualify for this type of role, you must be licensed and have at least one to two years of experience. Having special certifications can help you land the higher paying roles. Compare the travel companies and then start training to become a successful travel nurse.