Become a Travel Nurse

If you are a registered nurse hoping to increase your salary and travel the world becoming a traveling nurse may be for you. Read below for details on travel nurses and the specifics of travel nurse contracts. 

A travel nurse is a nurse who is hired for temporary amounts of time by hospitals who are understaffed, until the hospitals can find full time permanent staff. Travel nurses usually work for travel nurse agencies who coordinate with the hospitals in need of temporary travel nurses. Travel nurses can work with their agencies to find a job in their desired location for the desired amount of time. 

Each individual stay for a travel nurse can last anywhere from as little as one month to 9 months, or even over a year. Travel nurses are called to high-need areas where permanent nursing staff is experiencing burnout or overwhelm, which has been happening all over the country since the onset of the pandemic. Travel nurses are often compensated generously for their sacrifice of traveling around so frequently, making up to $5000 per week from their agency for their emergency services provided. 

Types of Travel Nurses 

Travel nursing became prominent in the 1970s when large quantities of people began to travel from colder climates to warmer climates, known as snowbirds, and there would be an understaffing crisis in the hospitals in warmer locations. Now travel nurses work as contractors for agencies who advocate for the nurses’ affordable housing or housing stipends, transportation payments, and competitive wages, as well as coordinating and acting as a liaison between the hospitals in need and the travel nurses they have hired in exchange for a portion of the travel nurses’ salaries. 

There are many different types of travel nurses in demand by different hospitals. The important thing for travel nurses to know is that they will likely have to adapt quickly to a chaotic environment since they are stepping in to fulfill and assist in an understaffed environment. 

  • Surgical / Telemetry Nurses These nurses must take quick action and be always on their toes during intensive procedures. Telemetry nurses additionally assist in helping prepare patients for surgery or intensive procedures as well as assisting the doctor during a procedure. They need to know how to act fast in case of a crisis in high-stakes procedures. 
  • Emergency Room Nurses (RN) emergency room nurses help with intake of patients and diagnostic procedures, as well as emergency procedures for patients who have suffered life threatening ailments or accidents. 
  • Certified nursing assistants (CNAs) are in high demand across the country. Many hospitals and health care facilities are looking for CNA's to fill positions on a travel basis. Travel cna job assignments can be a great way to see different parts of the country while also getting paid for your work. There are many websites that list travel cna jobs as well as other types of cna nurse positions. CNA's provide basic patient care under the supervision of a registered nurse (RN). They may help with activities of daily living such as bathing and eating, take vital signs, and provide emotional support to patients and their families. CNA's typically work in hospitals, nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and home health care settings. With a little research, you can find travel cna jobs in any of these settings.
  • Womb Health RN This type of RN assists in pre-birth, birthing, post-birth care for newborns and new parents, as well as reproductive healthcare for people with uterus. This type of nursing will be in high demand in the coming years and hospitals will need patient, sensible, and strong nurses for this department of care. 
  • Intensive Care CCRN Intensive care nurses help patients with life threatening ailments and need to know how to help patients in extremely difficult circumstances, requiring them to be always extremely responsible and attentive. 
  • Operating Room Nurses Operating room nurses must take care of unconscious patients and always ensure the cleanliness of the operating room. Operating room nurses need to be able to maintain a calm demeanor in a variety of crisis and high stakes circumstances to ensure the patient survives risky procedures. 
  • Cardiovascular Operating Room Nurses (CVOR) CVOR Nurses are like operating room nurses, but they work specifically to assist cardiovascular procedures which are some of the most high-risk procedures. 
  • Long Term Acute Care Nurses Long Term Acute Care nurses take care of the elderly or terminally ill in hospice and must have a great deal of emotional strength in trying times. 
  • Psychiatric Mental Health Nurses Psychiatric nurses must have a lot of patience and empathy when it comes to dealing with psychiatric patients who may not always be aware of the reality surrounding them and can have a lot to deal with. 

Websites to Find Travel Nurse Contracts 

Travel nurses can find contracts for various lengths of time, but contracts tend to be anywhere between 4 and 16 weeks long. Payment for travel nurses can be over $6000 per week depending on experience and nursing type. Here is a list of websites qualified nurses can find travel nurse contracts today. 

  • Nomads Nomad supports nurses in finding travel contracts by providing tools and information about different job opportunities in various locations. With Nomad you create an account listing your experience in nursing and your degree and certification level, and Nomad helps assign you to a job in your desired location while helping you negotiate your payment and stipends. 
  • Liquid Agents Liquid Agents is an agency that helps travel nurses find employment at hospitals in need. Nurses wishing to become travel nurses can apply at Liquid Agents website to become a contract traveling nurse with their agency. Liquid Agents has a smartphone app to help make searching for your dream job easier than ever. 
  • Host Healthcare Host Healthcare offers contract opportunities to nurses and therapy practitioners hoping to become travel nurses or traveling therapy professionals. Host Healthcare website helps with housing once their contracted nurse or therapy professional secures an assignment through their agency and allows contracted workers to search for jobs in their desired destination. Nurses and therapy professionals can sign up on their website to become a contracted team member for Host Healthcare. 
  • Vivian Health Vivian Health is a contracting agency who hires professional nurses to assign travel nursing contracts. You can create a profile on Vivian’s website or app for free if you are a registered nurse. Nurses can explore contract opportunities by looking at specs that include shift hours, location, and salary. 
  • Aya Healthcare Aya Healthcare is a travel nurse contractor company that helps nurses find travel nurse assignment contracts in the destinations of their choice. Nurses can search for assignment availability on the Aya Healthcare website in a search engine that allows you to search by the type of nursing job you are looking for as well as your desired destination. You can sign up with Aya Healthcare to become a contracted professional with their team if you are a registered nurse.