Travel nurses are registered nurses who have the opportunity to travel the country while working. Whether you’re a new or seasoned traveler, there are several things you should know before starting the application process. Let’s review five things you should know before starting any travel nursing application.
Ask yourself: how is travel nursing going to affect your personal life?
Before you decide to become a travel nurse, ask yourself how it may affect your personal life. Traveling nurses are quick learners, flexible, and adaptable to change. While travel nursing is exciting, it can also come with stressors that can affect your health and personal life. Some stressors can include moving, getting to know a new city, or learning a new unit’s processes and procedures.
Make a list of the pros and potential cons of travel nursing and ask yourself if the pros outweigh the cons. As travel nursing jobs have varying assignment lengths, consider the length of your assignment as well.
Do your due diligence on travel nurse staffing recruiters and agencies
Before speaking to any travel nursing agency, do your due diligence. Research reputable travel nursing agencies and their reviews. Most of the time, their online reviews are accurate. You can find these reviews by doing a Google search, reviewing blogs, or joining a travel nurse group or chat.
Make a list of your top three agencies, and contact them. A recruiter will call you back and tell you about the perks of their agency and employment opportunities. At Health Carousel Travel Nursing, our recruiters will get to know your likes, dislikes, specialty, and preferences to help you find the right position. Prepare a list of questions to ask beforehand, which will include your:
Check out Health Carousel Travel Nursing’s job board where you can view employment opportunities. We give you the option to engage with a recruiter when you’re ready. In addition, our On Demand app offers an always-on, user-friendly, self-directed way to search for assignments and manage all your important documents. It empowers travel nurses to find and apply to travel nursing jobs on your own, or with the help of a recruiter, whenever you need it.
Decide on your preferred work location
Starting a travel nursing career can be fun and exciting, but do your research first. Part of your research should be deciding on your preferred work location. Your preferred work location can be in almost any location throughout the country, there just needs to be an opening in your specialty. Also, many locations have a few healthcare facilities or employers, so make sure to research these as well. If you have more than one specialty, consider completing nursing skills checklists with your agency. This will help your recruiter match your skills with your potential new employer.
Learn about pay packages and how they work
Travel nursing pay packages often have several details that you will need to understand. Besides hourly pay and overtime rates, you will also need to understand meal and housing per diems. Many compensation packages also offer travel reimbursement, completion bonuses, and guaranteed hours and pay. If you have any questions about your pay package, ask your recruiter and they can explain.
Understand Your Taxes
Before starting your travel nurse application with an agency, understand your taxes. Tax rules and write-offs are different for every state. While you may be working in one state, your home state may have different tax compliance requirements. If you aren’t familiar with tax requirements for your home state and want to maximize your tax benefits, speak to a professional tax accountant.
Before starting any travel nursing application, weigh the pros and cons. Ask yourself if the assignment is right for you and your travel nursing career. Try some of these tips and reach out to an HCTN recruiter today! We offer a variety of travel nursing jobs and are here to support you through every step of the process.
Amanda Marten NP-C, MSN has been a certified nurse practitioner for over three years. With eight years of nursing experience, she has worked in a variety of specialties including urgent care, travel nursing, post-surgical, and intensive care.
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