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Nursing is a plentiful, demanding, and almost endless field when it comes to options for career choices and professional experiences. Though plenty of nurses finds satisfying jobs right in their own backyards, others have an itch for adventure. If that is you, you may be interested in becoming a traveling nurse. There is a lot you need to know, but first off, you’ll need to determine what degrees or certifications are appropriate to have before applying.
In most cases and in most states, you will not need to have your bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) to apply for a traveling nursing job. Still, the Institute of Medicine is calling for 80% of the entire nursing workforce to be BSN-credentialed by the end of the decade. And in this same manner, more and more traveling nurse employers are opting for higher educated nurses who have obtained or are obtaining their BSN. Be sure to check out our ranking of the Top 50 Best Value Online RN to BSN programs.
Even without your BSN you will need to pass the NCLEX exam, be a Registered Nurse (RN) with an associate degree and at least one year of experience in your nursing specialty before traveling. This is especially important if you are specialized or plan to apply to work in the areas of ICU, the cath lab, or the OB. Keep in mind that licenses must match the states where you wish to work, but some states are part of the Nurse Licensure Compact (NLC). They are called compact states, and working within them means your license can travel with you from state to state, job to job.
Studies show that hospitals with BSN-educated nurses tend to produce a higher quality of care. When it comes to traveling nurses, employers must trust that their nurses can adjust to quick changes with a sometimes-steep learning curve, making the BSN educated applicants all the more desirable. Although traveling nurses don’t have the stress of attending all staff meetings or holding some of the more demanding positions in a practice, they still must be competent enough to self-manage their patients in a new and ever-changing environment.
You’ll want to remember, too, that pay rates typically increase for nurses who have a BSN. This is true whether you choose to travel or not. However, traveling nurses are paid a competitive salary in addition to a housing bonus. Your salary will be all the more competitive if you have your BSN title to add to your credentials.
What is a Travel Nurse and How Does it Work?
Travel nursing is a great way for nurses to gain new experiences while working in different hospitals and medical centers around the world. It is a great opportunity for nurses to explore different cultures, gain new skills, and develop their professional network.
Travel nursing offers a unique combination of flexibility and stability. Travel nurses are employed by medical staffing agencies who act as intermediaries between the nurse and the hospital or medical center they will be working in. This allows travel nurses to choose from a variety of jobs in different locations with varying salary packages.
Travel nursing can be an exciting and rewarding career choice for those who are looking for adventure, want to broaden their experience, or simply need some extra income. With that said, it’s important to understand the ins-and-outs of travel nursing before taking on this type of job so you can make sure it’s right for you.
Benefits of Being a Travel Nurse
Being a travel nurse is an exciting and rewarding job that offers many benefits. The financial benefits of being a travel nurse include higher wages, tax advantages, and the potential to save money. Additionally, the employee benefits of travel nursing are numerous and can include free housing, health insurance, flexible hours, and more.
Travel nurses also have the opportunity to experience different cultures and locations while on assignment. With so many advantages to being a travel nurse, there is no wonder why it has become one of the highest paid nursing jobs in the industry.
Challenges of Becoming a Travel Nurse
Becoming a travel nurse is an exciting career opportunity, but it also comes with challenges and risks. Travel nurses must be prepared to face the common challenges of working in a new environment, dealing with unfamiliar regulations and policies, and adapting to different cultures. Additionally, travel nurses must consider the potential risks of being a traveler in an unfamiliar place such as language barriers, lack of support from family and friends, and safety concerns. All these factors can make becoming a travel nurse both rewarding and daunting at the same time.
Tips for Succeeding as a Travel Nurse
Becoming a successful travel nurse is no easy feat. It requires dedication, hard work and the right mindset. However, with the right tips and strategies, you can make the transition into becoming an RN easier and smoother. We will look at how to become successful as a traveling healthcare professional by discussing ways to make the transition easier, how to stay organized while on assignment and how to network effectively in order to find new jobs.
Becoming a travel nurse can be an exciting and rewarding career move. It offers the opportunity to explore new places, meet new people, and gain valuable experience in different healthcare settings. But it can also be a daunting process to make the transition from permanent nursing job to travel nurse.
Finding Housing as a Travel Nurse
For one, you give up the stability of a home. Although many travel nurses maintain a home base they come back to – whether it’s an apartment with roommates, a house they own, or their parents’ home – it can be very difficult for many nurses to be on the move. The mobile life of travel nursing is difficult, if not impossible, with a spouse or children, which is why many travel nurses are single with pets.
Many travel nurses receive stipends for housing, but that still means you have to secure housing for each assignment. Some may choose an option like an extended stay hotel, but in the age of AirBnB, many are choosing short-term rentals. There are sites like Furnished Finder that specialize in furnished accommodations for travel nurses and other traveling professionals.
Still other travel nurses choose the van life route, living in a camper van or RV while they move about. For travel nurses looking for a long-term RV campground, there are several factors to consider. From amenities and services to the location and cost, finding the perfect spot can be a challenge. You don’t want a party campground, especially if you work the night shift.
Fortunately, with careful research and planning, you can find the ideal RV campground that meets all of your needs. With so many options available, it’s important to take into account all of your needs when selecting a long-term RV campground for travel nurses.
Staying Organized as a Travel Nurse
As a travel nurse, staying organized is one of the most important skills you need to have. There is so much to keep up with when working as a travel nurse. You have to:
find housing, and plan ahead so you have housing at your next assignment
- apply for your next assignment
- learn your new tasks
- get to know your new coworkers
- learn about the place where you’re living
Staying organized and on top of tasks while on assignment is essential for success. The best way to achieve this is by having an efficient system in place that can help manage paperwork, organize schedules & tasks, and provide reminders when needed. With a streamlined process, you can accomplish more in less time – freeing up energy to focus on the job at hand.
With the right tools and strategies, you can make sure that you are prepared for any situation while away from home.
What Should You Look For in an Employer?
If you are a healthcare professional looking for a job, it is important to select the right employer. Finding the best places to find traveling healthcare work and selecting the right medical staffing agency can make a huge difference in your career.
It is important to research potential employers thoroughly before making any commitments. It is essential to consider factors such as salaries, benefits, working conditions, job security, and career growth opportunities when looking for an employer.
The job search process can be overwhelming and it’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of a new opportunity. However, it is important to keep your eyes open for any red flags that could indicate an employer might not be the best fit for you. From questions about salary expectations to inappropriate behavior during an interview, these warning signs should never be ignored.
By doing your due diligence and researching potential employers thoroughly, you can ensure that you are making the right decision for your future. Travel nursing agencies do their best to place you somewhere you will be comfortable and do your best work.
Do Permanent Staff Resent Travel Nurses?
With the increasing demand for travel nurses, it is natural to wonder how permanent staff feel about them. Do they resent the fact that travel nurses are taking their jobs? Or do they appreciate the extra help and support that travel nurses can provide? In this article, we will explore the relationship between permanent staff and travel nurses and discuss how both parties can benefit from working together. We will also look at some of the potential issues that may arise when introducing travel nurses into a team.
It is possible to find some people who resent travel nurses for taking their job. Often these people will work in an area where travel nurses are not needed and will feel like they have a say in whether or not those jobs should exist. There’s no doubt, nursing shortages are serious, and the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) shows significant need.
However, employers of both travel nurses and permanent staff alike will acknowledge that more companies are turning towards temporary workers because the demand for them is so high. In fact, on average, one out of three positions advertised as permanent actually requires a temporary position (57% according to an American Nurses Association study). If you have your nursing license, you’re ready to be a travel nurse.
Some people may insist that providing good healthcare means being stable and really living in the community, and that travel nurses would be more of an interloper. This argument depends on what type of job you do. If you are a nurse in a crucial job such as the ICU, then they stability is definitely important. However, if you are an RN who is moving from one hospital to another, gathering more experience and higher pay, then traveling is a personal choice that has little impact on health outcomes.
Every healthcare setting is going to be different, and everyone professional experience is different. As a travel nurse, one benefit is knowing that if you find yourself in a toxic work environment, it’s temporary. You might have insufferable coworkers, but soon you’ll be on your way again!
Is Becoming a Travel Nurse Right for You?
If you are already considering earning your online RN to BSN soon, why not do it while you travel? There are plenty of traveling nursing jobs for RNs available and since you can affordably complete your RN to BSN completely online from anywhere in the nation, consider doing so while you get a little experience under your belt and see the country.
If you’re wondering how to become a travel nurse, there are recruiters everywhere looking for you. If you have an associate degree in nursing, passed the NCLEX-RN, got your RN license, have nursing experience, and are ready for full-time work in healthcare facilities, they’re ready and waiting!
Travel nursing positions include specializations like:
- staff nurses
- intensive care
- critical care
Your career path toward a travel nursing career is close. Travel nurse assignments offer perks like high travel nurse salary, reimbursement for housing, further nursing education, and more. Medical facilities are facing shortages never before seen.
Whatever you choose, remember that obtaining an online RN to BSN degree is easier now than ever before. Combine this goal with the excitement of traveling and a competitive salary and there will be no stopping the experiences your competitive career has to offer!
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Aya Andrews is a passionate educator and mother of two, with a diverse background that has shaped her approach to teaching and learning. Born in Metro Manila, she now calls San Diego home and is proud to be a Filipino-American. Aya earned her Masters degree in Education from San Diego State University, where she focused on developing innovative teaching methods to engage and inspire students.
Prior to her work in education, Aya spent several years as a continuing education consultant for KPMG, where she honed her skills in project management and client relations. She brings this same level of professionalism and expertise to her work as an educator, where she is committed to helping each of her students achieve their full potential.
In addition to her work as an educator, Aya is a devoted mother who is passionate about creating a nurturing and supportive home environment for her children. She is an active member of her community, volunteering her time and resources to support local schools and organizations. Aya is also an avid traveler, and loves to explore new cultures and cuisines with her family.
With a deep commitment to education and a passion for helping others succeed, Aya is a true inspiration to those around her. Her dedication to her craft, her community, and her family is a testament to her unwavering commitment to excellence in all aspects of her life.