Ok. Gonna jump in here.
What Argo and neda said is that you are a med surg nurse with a specific quantity and quality of work experience.
You have certain certifications. You don't have others. You have decent enough references but maybe not nurse manager references. You have never traveled before.
You want to travel to California. The bill rate for Sacramento med surg at a level 1 trauma center is different than the bill rate for med surg at a level none hospital 20 miles outside of Sacramento. Because the housing costs are different. The hospital's agreement with the travel company is different. The company itself is different than the 500 or so other travel companies that might get you in there.
As far as Argo saying he made between 1200 and 3000.
Argo is a highly specialized and vastly more experienced nurse than you are now. He has traveled for many years. So has ned.
Your compensation wont even come close to theirs. Not ever. Because you will always be less experienced than they are...they will always be ahead of you. If you plan on staying med surg.. your compensation is most likely the lowest in the industry...and your assignments the s#ittiest.
Is thus enough? How about I share my own info since you think ned and Argo are withholding because....well....because they're just these snooty highly paid greed monsters that just don't want to help you.
I am a highly specialized ED/trauma traveler with 5 years in. I have been to 8 states doing contracts in ca, or, ny, Wa, va, NC, vt, mn. I have cen, tncc, pals, acls, nihss, esi cert and a bajillion other things like ekg cert, phlebotomy cert, ultrasound iv/picc cert. I have 8 nurse manager references and a boatload of colleague references.
My pay in NC was TAKEHOME (and your stupid and I mean stupid assertion that anybody with 2 years of med surg and no travel experience could TAKE HOME $3000 is delusional) $1400 /week with my deductions jacked up and no insurance.
My TAKE HOME from one of the highest paying travel jobs in california... mid valley on sf bay contract hospital...$1900-2100 week depending on whether it was crisis or winter or summer rates.
Are you getting it yet?
You are not experienced. You have no real marketable specialty that is in demand (think OR, ER, ICU, cath lab, PACU).
What you want is what everyone wants. That idiot girl who posted her $19k paycheck for 2 weeks in your bank account.
That is delusional. She did something that is next to impossible...but you don't want to hear that. She was PRN. She worked the holiday and night shift differentials and worked an unsafe number of hours.
listen to me carefully.
TRAVEL NURSING DOES NOT WORK THE WAY PRN NURSING WORKS.
You are a hired gun for that facility and you do what they tell you when they tell you. You have no control over your overtime schedule if you even get any. You get NO SHIFT DIFFERENTIAL OR HOLIDAY PAY.
Are you getting it yet?
Last. You have zero idea of what any contract or company is going to pay you until you out sign up and negotiate. you think you have this vast experience and ability to command anything from them and they will dump you. You have hours to either accept or decline an offer...and you have no idea whether another one is on the heels of that one. You cannot be submitted to a hospital by multiple companies at the same time hoping to get better pay.
Are. You. Getting. It. Yet.
Then you have the nerve to ask, after literally accusing these very helpful advisors WHERE CAN I SNAG THAT HIGH PAYING JOB.
Here is a good piece of advice.
Go sign your bada$$ med surg self up with 5 travel companies and submit all of your vast years of experience with your stellar references and hundreds of certifications. Tell them that you will only work in the high paying areas of California and Washington. Tell them that you want $2100-3000 TAKE HOME (NOT GROSS). With insurance and taxes taken.
Come back and tell us how that went.