US Colleges

How to Become a Travel Nurse

travel nurse

How to Become a Travel Nurse

There is already a big shortage of nurses in the United States, and the demand for nurses is increasing every day as the baby boomers are aging.  This need has given rise to a new profession of Travel Nursing.  Travel nursing industry is being developed with the intention to provide a solution to overcome the scarcity of nurses in the United States.

Travel nursing involves traveling as a part of the nurse’s job.  Nurses are expected to travel to some other location and work there for some specified period of time.  The existing dearth of nurses in the United States has increased the demand for travel nursing jobs.  Many travel nurse recruitment agencies and hospitals offer incentives like furnished housing, higher wages, bonuses and relocation assistance to hire qualified Licensed Practical Nurses (LPN), Licensed Vocational Nurses (LVN), Registered Nurses (RN) and other health care professionals.

Many health care professionals prefer to travel due to the benefits like professional growth, higher pay and also to try out some personal exploration.  Travelers usually select many recruitment agencies as a mediator between the traveler and hospitals or other potential employers.  As of last year, there are more than 340 Travel Nursing Companies in the U.S. which recruit qualified nurses for the travel nursing jobs.

Travel nurses generally work on short-term based contracts which span only for 4 to 13 weeks. Salary and other benefits vary widely from state to state.  In general, areas in the northern or western United States pay more compared to southern areas.  If the cost of living in any area is high then this can have impact on salary range.  If the travel nurse maintains a “tax home” while living and working away from that home then there may be tax benefit known as “Per Diem” or “Tax Advantage” pay.

Nurses often consider this traveling job as an opportunity to improve their financial status as well as to see the world.  Just imagine if you are a travel nurse then you have this privilege to select the – the health care facility, city where you want to work and even the shift you want to work in.  You also have the freedom to change shift after 13 or 26 weeks as per your convenience.  You decide each and every move of yours and carry on at your own speed which eventually leads you to the path of success in your nursing career.

As far as the nursing career is concerned, no other career in health care can offer you adventure and experience that travel nursing offers.  You will be able to work with the nation’s most prestigious facilities and also get to know new dimension of your own abilities.  You get this chance to live in unique and some of the most exciting destinations our country can offer and simultaneously earn handsome salary which is much more than offered in any permanent nursing jobs.

Travel nursing is one of the  new types of nursing job opportunities. To become a travel nurse one needs to have atleast one year of practical experience in one’s specialty and licensure in the state of employment.   Even though only one year of practical experience is mandatory to become travel nurse, it is highly recommended to have two or more years of practical experience before becoming a travel nurse.  To become a successful traveler one should have a flexible outlook and a good sense of financial planning, and most importantly how to negotiate with recruitment companies.