What Does It Take to Become a Travel Nurse?

February 5, 2018

What Does It Take to Become a Travel Nurse? 

Many people assume that working as a registered nurse is not compatible with travel, but the two are not mutually exclusive. You can earn your MSN in nursing administration from Bradley University and travel the world. If this sounds appealing, here’s what you need to do.   

What is a Travel Nurse? 

A travel nurse is a trained nurse, but rather than working in the same post for years, they are flexible and take up posts wherever a need for qualified personnel arises. Hospitals and other medical facilities often experience staff shortages. Major disease outbreaks, seasonal population increases, or a lack of suitable candidates for job openings all contribute to travel nursing assignments becoming available.  

If a hospital needs a pediatric nurse, an OBY/GYN nurse, or a nurse practitioner with a masters in nursing they will look to hire a travel nurse to fill the skills gap. This is where you come in. The position won’t be permanent, although it may become so if the person you are covering for doesn’t return to their job, so you are free to move on to a new job when your assistance is no longer required.  

Working as a travel nurse offers plenty of scope for travel within the United States and its territories. You can even travel the world if you like! 

Qualifications Needed 

You will need to be an RN with an ASN degree as a minimum. You will also need a minimum of one year’s experience working in your chosen speciality, in a hospital setting. Beyond that, any extra qualifications you have will make it easier to find work as a travel nurse. For example, if administration is your forte, a masters in nursing administration will enhance your resume. You can study online for your nursing degree and then take an RN to MSN conversion course.  

If you decide to travel the world as a travel nurse, language skills are essential, as you will be expected to speak the local language in any medical facility where you work.  

The Benefits of a Career as a Travel Nurse 

As a travel nurse, you will never be out of work. The US population is ageing and qualified nurses are in short supply as older nurses retire. There are always nursing positions vacant, so you should have your pick of where you fancy going. 

Travel nurses are paid a premium. As long as you are working more than 50-miles from your actual home, any money you earn will be tax-free. However, this is dependent on you owning a home, so if in doubt, talk to an accountant.  

Most travel nurses love the flexibility of their job. It’s impossible to get bored when you are rarely in one city for more than three months. Working as a travel nurse lets you see the country and be paid to do so. What’s not to like about that? It’s the perfect job for anyone who doesn’t have family responsibilities and who has itchy feet.  

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