As an experienced staff nurse, you may have worked with travelers in the past. In fact, you have possibly even considered answering the call yourself—imagining life as a travel nurse, moving to work in facilities in dire need of your skill set.
Even if you know current or former travel nurses, one thing may not be clear: Why do they choose to travel?
At Tailored Healthcare Staffing, our team has worked with countless travel nurses, all of whom have slightly different motivations for making this career move. Below we outline some of the most common reasons we see. Keep in mind that nurses often choose to travel because of a combination of these reasons.
Travel nursing is the pinnacle of work-life balance. Most travel assignments last 13 weeks; this gives you the option to schedule time off between assignments, explore new cities, and take extended vacations.
Are you a perpetual night-shifter who is curious what it’s like to work day shifts? Do you constantly work 12-hour shifts and wonder what 8-hour shifts would be like? If you’re interested in trying alternative shifts, travel nursing provides the flexibility to allow you to test out a new schedule. You can pursue options you may have been hesitant to commit to in your permanent job, and may discover that you love the change!
If you are known for daydreaming about your next vacation, travel nursing gives you the opportunity to wake up every morning with a new location to discover. With travel nursing, you can have your accommodations covered while exploring cities you’ve only dreamed about until now.
For those nurses missing friends and family in distant states, travel nursing provides the opportunity to spend time with them. Imagine spending three months in Tennessee with your sister who is expecting a baby, your son who got his dream job in Boston, or in the weeks leading up to your daughter getting married on the beach in Florida—travel nursing can help make this happen.
Travel nursing builds your CV in ways that a permanent job may not. It allows you to work closely with diverse nursing units and patient populations. Working for a variety of facilities provides a nurse with additional autonomy and skills. Since travel nursing means being able to jump in quickly and work well with others, it also shows that you have the ability to collaborate.
You have the freedom to tailor your travel nursing experience in multiple ways. Travel nurses choose what they are looking for in a career while avoiding unit politics and discord with management. Be sure to explain to your recruiter what is important to you and work with him or her to find a job that matches your goals.
Travel nurses typically earn a higher salary than permanent staff nurses. To learn more about how travel nurse pay works, click here.