Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Making a Decision About Travel Nursing

By Aaron Moore, MSN, RN, travel nurse expert

Q:  I really want to try travel nursing, but I can’t get up the nerve to go. Any advice?

A: There are so many reasons why you should try travel nursing.  I know it’s tough to venture out on your own--and some personality types may find it harder than others--but if you think you might want to leave the nest and see the world, here are some tips to help you make the decision.

First, do your own research.  I always feel more comfortable about a decision once I have really looked into it.  Reading information online is a great first step; then look around and talk to friends in the profession.  I’ll bet you can find a travel nurse in your facility that would be open to chat with you and answer questions.  In fact, I’ve never met a traveler who didn’t love to brag about his or her job.  (Which is why I love to answer your questions; I love travel nursing and take every chance I get to talk about it.)

Next, talk to the people closest to you.  “I don’t want to move away from family and friends,” is the most common reason I hear for not traveling.  The fear of being alone is an honest feeling that almost everyone has to some degree.  I have met some travelers who returned home after their first assignment because they realized that it wasn’t for them.  At least they tried―and now they know.

But I have met many more travelers who took the chance and realized what an awesome opportunity travel nursing is.  Don’t forget that your friends and family can come visit you in some of these great destinations, too, or you can plan extended side trips in between assignments to spend time with them.

Lastly, talk to a recruiter.  Recruiters are the experts and can steer you in the right direction, and answer any questions you have that the websites and other sources can’t answer.  Be cautious in how many recruiters you call, though, because they are likely to keep calling back.

Overall―and I mean it from my heart when I say this―you can’t go wrong with travel nursing.  One of my favorite chats I ever had with my recruiter was, “I can do anything for three months.”  When you think about it, it’s not that long of a time.  And if you’ve read any of my previous blogs you already know that time will fly by as you acclimate to your new home, explore your new city, and meet new people.

So make another resolution in 2013 to really consider the possibility of travel nursing.  There are many jobs open right now in all different parts of the country, in all different lines of nursing.  I know this because I get calls weekly from recruiters trying to lure me back.  Heck, I might just take them up on it one of these days.


Still can’t decide if a travel career is right for you? Check out “Why Nurses Travel” for insights from other RNs or talk to a recruiter with one of our staffing partners  to ask specific answers.


Sammy said...

I love nursing, but being stuck in one hospital can really become a burn out. There are some positive aspects to traveling. I feel you don't get caught up as much in the politics of one particular hospital.

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