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Tell me about travel nursing!

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adpiRN has 3 years experience and specializes in L&D.

15,341 Profile Views; 389 Posts

I've come up with the brilliant plan that next winter I will do travel nursing somewhere warm! (Southeast, FL, Texas, CA....)

To the nurses who've had travel nursing experience - tell me about it!

Which are the best companies to use?

Can you select which city or region you want to go to?

How much control do you have over your schedule? (how many shifts do you have to work a week and are weekends usually required or does it depend?)

Is it fairly easy to get these positions or is it competitive? (I would have 3 years L&D experience).

How far ahead do you apply?

How does housing work?

Is the pay generally above what staff nurses make in the same area?

Thanks!

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K+MgSO4 has 12 years experience as a BSN and specializes in Surgical, quality,management.

1 Follower; 1,747 Posts; 22,657 Profile Views

Talk to a travel nursing agency. they will be able to tell you the answers to all of these questions. Agencies vary in what they offer so speak to a few.

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Snowbird17 has 6 years experience and specializes in STICU, MICU.

79 Posts; 4,172 Profile Views

Talk to several agencies. But don't trust anything until you see it in writing.

The companies depend on what you want from the experience. Some pay better, but may not be as supportive elsewhere. Ask travelers you work with. Also, some companies sub-contract. So the hospital will use one primary company and pay them X. A secondary company hires you and takes their cut of X. Find out if this is the case before you sign a contract!

You absolutely pick where you want to go, but that doesn't mean there will be a need there. You can hold out, or choose to go somewhere else. Once again, talk to multiple companies- some have contracts in places others don't. Don't give too much info. Otherwise, they will call you for the rest of your life! Just give them your experience and desire location and start date, then see if what they can offer.

Scheduling depends on the facility and your contract. I was always guaranteed shifts, but sometimes that meant floating to another unit or even another hospital. Weekends and holidays are required. But if you want specifics dates off, you can have that written into your contract. Contracts are fulltime, 36-40 hours in what shift increments the hospital wants.

I don't know about L and D positions.

You can apply with a desire to start immediately or as far a couple months out. It's all about needs. If the hospital needs someone to start immediately, they will not wait for you. Sometimes they know far in advance that they will have pending needs.

They can arrange housing (apt that you DO NOT share, and utilities) or you can take a tax free stipend. If you let them arrange housing, some will let you pick the place and take care of all the paperwork and lease. But make sure you request an apt with a washer and dryer in the unit. I learned that one the hard way!

The hourly rate in combination with housing is usually quite a bit more than staff pay. California pay really well because of the overtime laws.

Traveling is a fun gig. You meet new people and see new places! I loved it. I would still be traveling, but I met my husband on an assignment and settled down.

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adpiRN has 3 years experience and specializes in L&D.

389 Posts; 15,341 Profile Views

Thanks for the info! I would be traveling with my husband (who works from home) and we think it'd be a fun adventure before having children. (And a good way to spend the winter!)

We'd also be bringing our cats. I read that pets are ok in some traveler's housing with a pet deposit, but I'm sure it depends on the place.

Does anyone have experience with this?

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Snowbird17 has 6 years experience and specializes in STICU, MICU.

79 Posts; 4,172 Profile Views

I took my dog. The company just finds a place that is pet friendly and you pay the deposit. No big deal. Cats will be okay, but I found my dog to be a little limiting. If I want to any over night traveling to nearby sites, I had to board him. Not a huge deal, but somewhat of inconvience.

Where are you thinking of traveling? I really enjoyed Charleston, SC.

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adpiRN has 3 years experience and specializes in L&D.

389 Posts; 15,341 Profile Views

Charleston would be great! We love it there! Were you at MUSC?

We're thinking of eventually settling down in Aiken, SC so it might be good to travel in that area to get more familiar with it.

I'm also drawn to Austin TX and Arizona. North Carolina would work too.

I guess it would just depend on what's available when we want to go!

Which company did you use?

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tnbutterfly - Mary is a BSN, RN and specializes in Peds, Med-Surg, Disaster Nsg, Parish Nsg.

14 Followers; 139 Articles; 5,599 Posts; 202,195 Profile Views

Moved to Travel Nursing forum for more discussion.

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228 Posts; 5,480 Profile Views

I am currently in Clearwater, FL with my hubby and my dog. I make twice as much as I did at home on the floor, and have an all expense paid condo to go home to. I can't complain! It's an amazing experience - of course, they all aren't this good. My first assignment in Orlando was lacking the prestige of nice housing and I hated the floor I worked on. However, knowing I would bring home awesome pay and only had to be there 13 weeks helped.

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adpiRN has 3 years experience and specializes in L&D.

389 Posts; 15,341 Profile Views

Charleston would be great! We love it there! Were you at MUSC?

We're thinking of eventually settling down in Aiken, SC so it might be good to travel in that area to get more familiar with it.

I'm also drawn to Austin TX and Arizona. North Carolina would work too.

I guess it would just depend on what's available when we want to go!

Forgot about FL and New Orleans. Those would also be top choices for a winter-time placement!

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14 Posts; 1,297 Profile Views

I've been looking into Travel Nursing also but am a little intimidated. I can't commit fully until August so don't want to sign up for anything yet. Do they tell you what your hourly rate will be? Do they beat $36.00/hr?

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