Alaska travel pay expectations

  1. Hi all,

    I am considering a travel assignment in Alaska. I have lived there before, in fact I graduated from nursing school in anchorage so I know what to expect as far as living there.

    My question is regarding travel pay for labor and delivery. Has anyone traveled there? What is an appropriate hourly rate without the housing stipend? This will be my third travel assignment and I am starting to feel like my agency is not paying me well. I also need to always fork out the fees for licensure, travel, endorsements...etc then wait two weeks for reimbursement. I'm trying to budget all that....and I'm also talking with two other agencies to compare.

    But the bottom line is I want to hear what a good hourly rate is for the anchorage area and for the bush. My recruiter told me of a job in Kodiak and one in Ketchikan. Neither place appeals to me so I'm holding out for closer to Anchorage. I didn't even bother asking her what the hourly rate is.

    I have also noticed with my agency that I am offered "X" for hourly pay but if I push back a little they will counter offer with a better "XY" hourly pay offer or reimbursement.. Is this normal? Or should I expect them to pay well with the first quote?

    Any help would be very appreciated.
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    About peeweedelivery

    Joined: Jan '04; Posts: 76; Likes: 16
    full time student/full time domestic engineer


  3. by   Truckee
    Your recruiter/agency will mostly/never give you the best quote first time through.

    Your recruiter is in the business of sales; I probably don't have to explain the business of sales to you. Secondly, this is not like the grocery store where prices are plainly marked on the shelves, this is car sales, where prices/wages are always negotiable.

    There are a few ways to look at pay:
    1) "what hourly wage would make you happy" If you come from Alabama and a regular hourly wage is $22/h and $25 would make you happy, ask for $25. If $30 would make you really happy ask for $30.

    2) "a little research" A simple web search for local wages in your given profession will get you in the ball park.

    3) "ask around" I would guess that some of your graduating class is still in the area, they would be a great start for information.

    As far as reimbursement for licences and things it is pretty typical for you to first pay then get reimbursed from your agency, they aren't going to pay for anything they don't need. If you tell your agency you want to get a California license and they pay for it then you don't take an assignment there, they are out $300.

    As far as pay. L and D pays pretty good. I am currently working in the ED in Bethel, AK as a TDY (temperary duty nurse) and getting $40/hr. It is pretty close to what full time pay is and I'm happy.