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Moving to Seattle - should I Travel first?

EmilyT,RN EmilyT,RN (New) New

Hey everyone,

I am a nurse on a med-card stepdown floor and just hit my 2 year mark, so I am still relatively green. My boyfriend and I are moving to Seattle and I am wondering if it is wise to try and take a travel job initially so that I have a quick position and can make some money while I apply at Swedish and UW Medical Center. Any advice on whether or not this is a good idea?

Also, if I choose to go this route, how soon before arriving in Seattle should I be applying to Travel Nursing agencies?


Personally, I think it is a bad idea. You won't be eligible for the tax advantages that most travelers depend on for a good check, you will be making less than the union staff nurses, and you will probably miss out of large relocation bonuses. If you are lucky to land in a dream assignment as a traveler, the standard non-compete may lock you out of going staff at the same facility for 6 to 12 months.

Fear of commitment? Then travel or per diem may be good instead of going staff.

In terms of competitive wages, that really wouldn't bother me since any wage is better than no wage at all. Im concerned it may take months to get in to UW Medical or Swedish and thus a travel job would offer something in the interim.

Any additional advice? I know the chances of landing a dream travel position are slim, especially with my level of experience. If I took a travel position but then did get hired at UW or Swedish, would it hurt me to push back my starting date until after I fulfilled my travel commitment?


It might hurt you, no way to know. I don't know what the market for staff nurses is there and you won't either until you call the hospitals. Why not make the call?

You might also consider working per diem for a local agency such as HRN or the Surgical Staff. Just check out the non competes so you won't be locked out of a perm job where you work per diem.

Ok! I will definitely call when I get closer to arriving in the area. I appreciate your advice!

If you really believe it will take months to get a staff job, call now. You might get a free round trip out there to interview.

I just applied for a pier diem position at Swedish and they called me the very next day. I am a current traveler there and they do not treat their travelers very well. I would take a staff position there instead. They had so many when I was looking through them last night.