I have been reading many threads here and found many interesting and confusing things about travel nursing. (Background info: I am a med/surg nurse with 13yrs of experience and less than one year of tele experience.) I have always thought about traveling but so many things have kept me from trying it. Fear mostly. Now the main things are that I currently have a mortgage on a house (which is seeming like it's a good thing) and two I have a pet (50 lb good old fashioned mutt). Suddenly, the more I read, the more doable traveling seems. My thinking was to find a company, start in my state (Maryland) or very close and than if everything works out alright, I was planning on taking assignments in other areas such as Mesa, AZ and Louisville, KY. (I have family in both areas) And than go from there....
So onto my questions. So I would call multiple agencies and get a feel for the companies and offers. Now when I read some of the hourly rate they seem extremely low. I am assuming that housing, utilities, food and travel may be to this to compensate for the low pay? Also the whole this is taxable and that is tax free is a little confusing. What if I decide to start my first assignment in the state that I already live in. Would that be a wise thing to do? Will that make a difference in pay or benefits And what about health benefits? I read somewhere that could add up to hundreds of dollars a month. What exactly should I look for? The main things and also if anyone has any tid bits about the little things as well that a first timer wouldn't think about.
I know this is long. I just have so many questions and want to be clear.
Thanks to all who respond :-)