How to Choose Where to Go on Your Next Nursing Travel Assignment

by Howard Gerber on November 17, 2016

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travel nursing locationsOne of the great things about working as a travel nurse is the next adventure is just around the corner. Although it can vary, most assignments last 13 weeks. After that, it’s time to decide where to go next.

For some nurses, it’s an easy decision. They have a list of must-visit areas and do their best to land their next perfect assignment in a desired location. For others, they want to work in a certain medical center, and that’s all that matters.

But with all the great locations and many things to consider, how do you decide where to go on your next assignment?

Consider Your Priorities

Spend time thinking about what matters most to you. Is the location the most critical factor in whether you take an assignment? Maybe you care more about the type of facility you work in. Prioritizing what you want most in a travel assignment will help lead you to the right job.

Location Matters

You know the saying when you buy a house; location, location, location. The same thing may be true for deciding where to go on your next travel job.

Do you love the outdoors and want somewhere with great hiking and scenery? Are you more of a city person and want to go somewhere with great cultural activities and nightlife? Do you want to travel to a city you have never been? Is it more important to be a few hours’ drive from home?

For many healthcare travelers, location is one of the most important considerations. In fact, it may have been the primary reason you wanted to work as a travel nurse. The only problem is with so many great places in the United States it may be difficult to narrow down where to go!

Try making a list of your top 5 or 10 cities and based on the availability of jobs, it will be easier to pick one or the other. Remember, there is so much opportunity in this industry, so you’ll have plenty of chances to visit all the areas on your wish list!

Show Me the Money

There is no doubt that salary is a big factor when deciding which travel nursing assignment to take. But be sure to look at the big picture. In addition to your base pay, consider the shift differential if you’ll be working the night shift or weekends. Also, the cost of living varies in each state and city, so make sure you take that into account.

Details Matter

There may be instances where you have a few assignments that sound great or maybe you’re on the fence about a particular job or location. It’s helpful to weigh everything involved. In addition to salary, location, and facility, look at the details. Consider the benefits package you’re offered. What’s your housing situation? Review any clauses in your contract and consider everything before you make a decision.

Trust Your Gut

It’s also essential to trust your gut. While an assignment to Miami may sound amazing, if other aspects of the job don’t sit right, listen to your instincts. Don’t ever feel pressured to accept an assignment if it does not feel right.

Also, remember certain aspects may be negotiable. If the housing offered is not acceptable, ask if other arrangements can be made. You might have to compromise, but you never know until you ask.


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