Author Topic: Travel Nursing!  (Read 2002 times)

KelStache

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Travel Nursing!
« on: January 10, 2017, 11:15:02 AM »
Hi everyone!

My partner is a nurse and we're hoping to start doing some travel nursing once we have a baby and I'm a full-time parent (~2 years).  We're from Canada and would be interest in seeing different areas of our country, as well as checking out some places in the U.S.

We've done quite a bit of research already, but I'd love to hear some experiences, tips, stories, or whatever from people who have done travel nursing, or knows someone who has.

Thank you in advance!

katscratch

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Re: Travel Nursing!
« Reply #1 on: January 10, 2017, 04:27:50 PM »
Traits that make a great traveler, in my experience:

At a point career-wise that they are comfortable with no orientation period (in my area it's 2 days - 1 week on average)

Can financially plan for self-insuring for healthcare, etc (AFLAC is the most common among our travelers - I'm sure it depends on your agency what options are best)

Able to adapt to new situations easily without feeling frustration (self explanatory)

Enjoys working in stressful morale situations and is a natural team-builder (a lot of contracts are in areas that are really hurting for staff and local staff can be resentful)

Has never had that "OMG I HATE BEING NEW AND FEELING LIKE A DUMMY" feeling (the reason I won't be a traveler, haha)

Able to "read" the crowd and adapt to the "local" workplace culture (this is probably regional but it's pretty important in my area to not alienate physicians and therefore ruin networking opportunities)

Loves to explore new cities (you've got this nailed!)



I think, from your post, that your partner sounds like he or she has the right motivation!  Our docs often will say things like, "Well you can tell that one's here just for the money" because about half our travelers are obviously super passionate about learning new things and keeping their skills up by taking new contracts, and the other half are pretty checked out or set in their ways and aren't interested in being taught by us lowly locals ;)


The stories from my friends who travel are amazing.  It's a great way to see the country(ies) because you're totally immersed in the culture for the length of your contract, instead of 'visiting' for 3 months or whatnot.  My friends that love it the most are super outgoing and love challenges, so they take contracts in hospitals that are dying for help (but not on strike, that's just their preference) and are pretty much heroes ;)

KelStache

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Re: Travel Nursing!
« Reply #2 on: January 10, 2017, 08:00:17 PM »
Traits that make a great traveler, in my experience:

At a point career-wise that they are comfortable with no orientation period (in my area it's 2 days - 1 week on average)

Can financially plan for self-insuring for healthcare, etc (AFLAC is the most common among our travelers - I'm sure it depends on your agency what options are best)

Able to adapt to new situations easily without feeling frustration (self explanatory)

Enjoys working in stressful morale situations and is a natural team-builder (a lot of contracts are in areas that are really hurting for staff and local staff can be resentful)

Has never had that "OMG I HATE BEING NEW AND FEELING LIKE A DUMMY" feeling (the reason I won't be a traveler, haha)

Able to "read" the crowd and adapt to the "local" workplace culture (this is probably regional but it's pretty important in my area to not alienate physicians and therefore ruin networking opportunities)

Loves to explore new cities (you've got this nailed!)



I think, from your post, that your partner sounds like he or she has the right motivation!  Our docs often will say things like, "Well you can tell that one's here just for the money" because about half our travelers are obviously super passionate about learning new things and keeping their skills up by taking new contracts, and the other half are pretty checked out or set in their ways and aren't interested in being taught by us lowly locals ;)


The stories from my friends who travel are amazing.  It's a great way to see the country(ies) because you're totally immersed in the culture for the length of your contract, instead of 'visiting' for 3 months or whatnot.  My friends that love it the most are super outgoing and love challenges, so they take contracts in hospitals that are dying for help (but not on strike, that's just their preference) and are pretty much heroes ;)

Thank you so much for this response! Your description sounds a lot like my partner, but I think it'll be a good idea to talk about all of those points together :)

We've heard that travellers should feel very confident/comfortable in their field which is one of the reasons we'll be waiting a few more years (even though we want to start now haha). It's such a neat career opportunity!

kamille

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Re: Travel Nursing!
« Reply #3 on: January 10, 2017, 10:26:19 PM »
Following because I am very interested in trying out travel nursing as well and have been spending the last few days doing some research to make it happen. I have fortunately run into many travelers at my own hospital and have received some good info. Private message me if you have any specific questions I might be able to answer. I appreciate katscratch's response, especially the feeling like being new and not knowing anyone. I plan on not making any drastic changes with my current life arrangements until I try it a couple times and see if it is something that will work for me.

KelStache

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Re: Travel Nursing!
« Reply #4 on: January 11, 2017, 10:46:25 AM »
Following because I am very interested in trying out travel nursing as well and have been spending the last few days doing some research to make it happen. I have fortunately run into many travelers at my own hospital and have received some good info. Private message me if you have any specific questions I might be able to answer. I appreciate katscratch's response, especially the feeling like being new and not knowing anyone. I plan on not making any drastic changes with my current life arrangements until I try it a couple times and see if it is something that will work for me.

Not making any drastic changes before trying it out is probably the best way to go :) I think we will probably just be travelling a few contracts per year, and maintain our home base (hopefully renting it out when we're away).

If we come up with any specific questions I'll definitely message you. I see you're in Neonatal ICU, my partner is currently in General Systems ICU and really loves it.

MrsPete

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Re: Travel Nursing!
« Reply #5 on: January 11, 2017, 07:12:56 PM »
I know someone who works in traveling nursing ... but she doesn't actually travel.  She works here in various hospitals in our area (several big hospitals are nearby), and she gets paid bigger money than would a person who stays in the same job all the time.  She loves it.  She works for a month or two while someone's on maternity leave, for example, or she works while they're trying to hire someone full time. 

Yes, as someone said above, she's always the new girl on the floor, never stays long enough to develop friendships -- and she's fine with that.  She can also say, "Nope, can't work this week -- my kids are home for spring break" without any consequences.  Yes, she's an experienced nurse -- the nurse who graduated next May isn't going to be chosen; that person still needs to develop skills before trying for this job. 

I don't know if she receives any benefits.  We've never about that. 

Another interesting nursing job that I find interesting:  Flight nurse.  Every time you see a helicopter take off from a hospital, that helicopter contains exactly one nurse.  That person is responsible for the care of a critical patient who's being jostled around during the flight, and he or she must do it with no backup at all and in a cramped work area.  This nurse is experienced, specially certified and highly paid.  He or she also sits around doing nothing but wait ... until it's time