Pay cut to travel?? - page 2

Just wondering how many of you had to take a pay cut to travel? I joined a Calif travel nurse FB group and have been looking at travel contracts. I'm a little surprised how poorly they pay. The... Read More

  1. by   NedRN
    Likely not. Just my area. Although there are a lot of forces holding down pay in Ohio. No nurse shortage, a near monopoly by Cleveland Clinic in the northern part of the state, and a lack of unions.

    $25 is what I was offered by the largest hospital in the largest local system for my 17 years of experience for the only open job I could find. I suppose that is OK pay considering you can buy a decent home in my area for $60,000.
  2. by   Argo
    Quote from ICUman
    I highly doubt the staff pay in Ohio maxes out at $25/hr.
    There are definitely rural parts of the US, mainly midwest and the south, that pay experienced nursing staff under $30/hr.

    They usually have staff that have been there forever and have no staffing needs or unions to enforce ratios/wages.

    As a person that would review resumes/applications and be hiring RNs, i would be shocked at how low some of the wage requests were from some people. I would actually tell them to let HR know that was a typo and ask for more, whatever a local reasonable rate was.
  3. by   ICUman
    Quote from NedRN
    Lots of synergy there as NE hospitals census drops in the wintertime.
    I'm also not so sure about this ^ as every hospital I have worked at in the wintertime the census is at the highest point of the year. Due to PNA, influenza, resp. illness etc.

    Quote from Argo
    There are definitely rural parts of the US, mainly midwest and the south, that pay experienced nursing staff under $30/hr.
    Yes I realize that...which is why I said Ohio. I'm positive some nurses out there are making $30+/hr. Areas of Alabama start new grad RN's @ $18/hr. Pitiful.

    Which is one reason why I will never take a staff position in a low paying area again. I learned my lesson in Utah. Now in a cheap COL area I make over $60/hr as staff. And I am trying to get a per diem position in the SF Bay to hit the triple digit per hour wage.
  4. by   NedRN
    Back in the day, we are talking about 40 years ago and before travel, acuity was a lot lower for inpatients. I don't disagree that even adults have more health issues in the wintertime, but picture where snowbirds are coming from. When the population may double in the wintertime in Florida, there is a greater need there.
  5. by   ICUman
    While Florida hospital census's may be high due to snowbirds, I think NE regional hospitals are also quite high census at that time of year.
    But I don't really care.
  6. by   Argo
    I haven't seen any union/ hospital pay scales that take prn into triple digits. 90s for sure and then add shift diff.... that would get you there but not the base rates. I have all the bay area hospital systems pay scales as of February this year
  7. by   NorCalKid
    Quote from Argo
    I haven't seen any union/ hospital pay scales that take prn into triple digits. 90s for sure and then add shift diff.... that would get you there but not the base rates. I have all the bay area hospital systems pay scales as of February this year
    I haven't heard of any either (though I don't know many of them). Even at $90 your breaking 1k a day working 12's...
  8. by   perfexion
    I meet a lot of nurses who claim they get paid more as staff nurses than travel nurses, but I don't believe them because they don't work in Northern California. Some nurses misunderstand travel nurse pay and THINK they will be short changed if they travel. For instance I met an older nurse a few years ago with about 40 years experience who showed me her paycheck, which was about $3200, and said, "Where would I go that I'd be making more than this? Travel nurse contracts pay about half that!" So I had to correct her and tell her that, yes, the average travel nurse contract pays somewhere between $1600 and $2400 PER WEEK! Her paycheck was biweekly. So yes, I only made a measily $1800 per check, but I get that check every week, so i essence, she would get paid slightly more to travel, with the added bonus of traveling the country. After that she asked for my recruiter's number and she's been traveling ever since. However, this whole conversation would've gone differently if that nurse was in Northern California. I believe they probably make more than $3600 every two weeks there!
  9. by   NedRN
    It also might be a different conversation when you consider staff nurses get benefits worth 30% plus of their paycheck. The difference is free cash versus total compensation. Consider PTO, sick pay, holiday pay, retirement good health insurance that most staff nurses enjoy. Staffers who actually utilize these benefits (and others) would lose by traveling. Traditionally, travel is a good way for younger and healthier nurses to whack off a chunk of school loans or get a fast downpayment for a house. Many older people in moderate or poor health (or the substantial benefits family and friends bring to a person) truly cannot afford to travel, even those in the Deep South.

    Staff and travel just have different math. And honestly, over a career, it doesn't make much difference, even in many poorly paid parts of the country. Yup, never meet travel nurses from Northern California (very difficult math), but a lot of them will never be able to afford a house.
  10. by   jive turkey
    Quote from NorCalKid
    Just wondering how many of you had to take a pay cut to travel? I joined a Calif travel nurse FB group and have been looking at travel contracts. I'm a little surprised how poorly they pay. The blended pay almost always less than per diem pay. Just wondering how many of you would take a pay cut to travel? Is the lifestyle really worth taking a pay cut?


    The tax stuff doesn't help me too much.
    Share your numbers if you don't mind. All of them. Not just pay but expenses, benefits, tax implications, if anybody is going to rent space in your primary residence while you're away etc. It'll be interesting to see if it is indeed a pay cut after doing all the math. Judging by your name I'm assuming you're from Northern California and if this means Bay area or not in the desert area I can see why things may appear as a pay cut for you.

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