This is a crosspost from my youtube channel where I briefly talk about the five questions people frequently ask me in regards to travel nursing.
1. What is a travel nurse?
A travel nurse is like a contractor or a substitute teacher where you’re only there for a short period of time. You do all the functions of a nurse, but you move from hospital to hospital throughout your assignments.
Read more: Travel Nursing: What’s That About?
2. How long is an assignment?
Length of assignments varies depending on your contract and the needs of the facility. However, the standard length is typically 13 weeks or 3 months. Of course, it can be shorter or longer, and many times you have the option to extend.
3. Do you have a choice as to where they send you?
Yes, of course. You are in complete control of where you work. Recruiters can suggest openings that they have available, but you absolutely have the final say. It’s not like the military where you get stationed somewhere. You work alongside your recruiter to help form your wishlist and you choose from any availability they have.
4. How does housing work?
There are two options here.
- The first is to accept the company housing where they’ll most likely put you up in an extended stay or leased apartment that they have available. This will come out of your paycheck and will offer you less flexibility to move in and move out dates, but it’s a lot less stressful than finding a place on your own.
- Your other option is to take the housing stipends and put that towards your rent. You can find short-term rentals on Craigslist, Facebook Housing Groups, Airbnb, FurnishedFinder, VRBO, or at local apartment complexes. You’ll usually come out ahead financially when you take this option. As a rule of thumb, try not to spend more than one week’s salary on housing.
Read more: Finding Housing as a Travel Nurse
5. What do I do for taxes?
I use a CPA that specializes in traveling healthcare providers. They send me a pdf to fill out prior to our phone conference. When I’m done filling it out, I set up my appointment. We have our phone call, which takes an hour or so. Then they do the rest and will send me some stuff to sign when they’re all done. I’ve used them since I started traveling. I’d definitely suggest checking them out at TravelTax.com. They have a ton of resources; just try your best not to get overwhelmed!