Travel nursing is a growing segment for nursing careers and can be lucrative while opening up the possibility of discovering new places, but not without all the hurdles that working away from home can bring, whether in another U.S. state or even outside the country.
So being prepared is important, and having tools and resources can make the difference in having a successful travel nursing gig. With that, here are 50 tools and resources for travel nurses that cover a range of categories which you might not even have considered.
Jobs and Contracts
Travel nursing job sites are plentiful online. Here’s a selection from some of the different types.
- Flight Nurse Medical Escort — Find work as a medical escort for patients who need critical care nurses on flights.
- VA Travel Nurse Corps – Veterans Health Administration — The U.S. Dept of Veterans Affairs (VA) site has information on their Travel Nurse Corps (TNC) program of temporary short-term assignments at VA Medical Centers in the United States.
- Nurse Recruiter | RN and Travel Nursing Jobs — Nurse Recruiter offers a Rapid Apply form, which with your consent sends out your travel nursing credentials to healthcare employers that they match you, bring opportunities to you.
- Travel Nursing, RN Jobs, and Nursing Forums at Ultimate Nurse — Find travel nursing jobs or join the forums at Ultimate Nurse.
- Travel Nursing Jobs at NursesRx — NursesRx has travel nursing jobs, news, and even up to a $750 referral fee if the nurse you refer gets hired. They have a similar travel nursing jobs site at American Mobile.
- Dialysis at Sea — Find travel nursing work with a sea cruise company that offers destination packages to dialysis patients.
News, Tips, Blogs and Forums
Don’t go into a travel nursing gig without researching the opportunities, or preparing for some of the hurdles. These blogs, sites and forums should get you started with articles, references and discussions.
- Medscape — Medscape publishes medical news and health alerts from multiple countries, as well information on various nursing specialties.
- Travel Nursing Blogs — Travel Nursing Blogs is a collection of blogs, ratings, jobs, tools and resources, including a Cost of Living calculator.
- The Gypsy Nurse — The Gypsy Nurse is a travel nursing resource site and blog that includes destination reports about different hospitals.
- Home – BluePipes Blog — While not exclusively about travel nursing, the BluePipes blog does have a significant number of articles on the topic, while the main site has skills checklists, cloud resume storage, universal documentation, document management, networking with colleagues and other features.
Unless your travel nursing recruiter has you taken care of, you will likely need to find short-term accomodations while on assignment. If you would like to avoid hotels in favor of something more like a home, the following sites give you ample options, depending on your preferences and budget.
- Airbnb | Vacation Rentals, Homes, Apartments and Rooms for Rent — Airbnb is one of the disruptors of the short-term housing rental market, ideal for travel nurses who need to list or rent a place to stay while on assignment.
- Find Apartments for Rent and Rentals – Get Your Walk Score — Walk Score covers rentals for the U.S., Canada and Australia, as well walk score rankings for 3,000 large cities and 10,000+ neigbhorhoods, to help you choose an area to stay in while on assignment.
- VRBO – Vacation Rentals By Owner — While you might be working not vacationing, vacation rental units are sometimes suitable for a work gig — and possibly tax deductible — and VRBO gives you rental listings by owners.
- Apartments & Holiday Rentals – Wimdu.com — Wimdu is another rental booking site, with rates that claim to be better than hotels, and with numerous amenity options.
- HotPads – Find Houses and Apartments for Rent with Map-based Search — Hotpads helps you find places for rent (or sale) on an easy to use map of the area you search.
- CHBO – Corporate Housing, Furnished Housing & Real Estate Rentals — If you’ve incorporated yourself as a travel nursing business, you may have justification for corporate housing rental, which CHBO emphasizes on their site.
Maps, Moving and Transportation
Whether your travel nursing assignment is in a different state in the United States or in another country, many of the following tools, apps and resources while help you plan your short-term move and/or how to get around when you get to your destination.
- Google Maps — Whether you use the Web site or one of the mobile apps, Google Maps can help you plan your trip, as well as get you acquainted in a new location.
- City-Data.com – Stats about all US cities — City-Data claims to have profiles of all American cities, plus forums, info about real estate, cost of living, crime rates, weather, restaurants, house prices and much more, as well as a forum for discussion.
- City Town Info — Find info on over 20,000 communities in the United States, including population, schools, hospitals, colleges and more, on City Town Info.
- Sperling’s Best Places to Live — Sperling’s Best Places has information about different parts of the U.S., including climate, crime, cost of living, real estate and more.
- Protect Your Move — Information from the U.S. Dept of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) to protect your move, avoid scams and more.
- Uber — Uber is a handful of companies disrupting transportation, getting you to and from your destination in the U.S., all from the convenience of a mobile app.
- Lyft – A ride whenever you need one — Like Uber, Lyft lets you book a ride with a mobile app, whether to or from the airport, or just to get around in a new location. Here is how to redeem a Lyft code to get a better price, save it in bookmarks.
- Relay Rides — Relay Rides is similar in nature to Uber and Lyft except that they offer short-term rentals on cars sourced from their community, rather than single rides.
- Moving.com – Moving Companies — If your travel nursing gig is long-term, Moving.com helps you find a mover, truck rental or storage space.
- Move | Apartment Rentals — Find or list apartments for rent, get moving quotes, and more from Move.com.
- Trip | Cheap Flights, Hotels and Trips — Trip.com helps you find flights, hotels, rental cars, cheap flight deals, trip guides and more.
Social Media, Communication and Languages
Being in a new place can get pretty lonely until you have time to make acquaintances. If you’re going to another country where English is not the native tongue, it’s even lonelier. Take advantage of social networks, chat apps, meetup apps, and language learning apps to stay social.
- Facebook — Keep in touch with family, friends, and colleagues, or join a Facebook Group related to the Nursing profession. Mobile app available.
- Skype — Skype is not just an useful text/audio/video chat tool for keeping in touch with friends and loved ones at home while you’re on assignment, but some healthcare organizations are even conducting interviews via Skype. Mobile app available.
- WhatsApp — If you don’t want to pay ridiculous text messaging fees to your cellular carrier while on assignment, check out the text chat mobile apps from WhatsApp (bought up by Facebook), which makes texting a low-cost affair (free for the first year).
- Meetup – Find your people — Meetup.com lists a broad range of meetup events in many cities, covering many different interests, or you can list your own — so you don’t have to be alone in a new location. Mobile app available.
- Duolingo — Duolingo turns language learning into games with point rewards — gamification — to make it fun and easy, in case you get a travel nursing gig outside of the U.S. in a non-English-speaking country. Mobile app available.
- iTunes University — If the other language learning resources in this list are not enough, many free language lessons are available in Apple iTunes (desktop, Web site, or mobile apps), under the iTunes University feature. Mobile app available for Apple iOS platform only.
Finance and Taxes
Financial planning for work as a travel nurse should come before, during and after an assignment. Here are a collection of resources for saving on fuel costs, calculating taxes, and making sure you are aware of eligible deductions for the period you are away from home.
- GasBuddy.com — GasBuddy lists gasoline prices in various American states and in Canada. Mobile apps available.
- Triple AAA — You don’t have to have to be an AAA member to to use the free resources, which include the Daily Fuel Gauge report, where you’ll find a fuel cost calculator and more.
- Paycheck Calculators — Paycheck City has various calculators (salary, 401(k), etc) and articles on taxes and related matters.
- Expensify – Expense records that don’t suck — Expensify offers free online expense reports, ideal if you’re contracting. Mobile app available.
- IRS – Internal Revenue Service — At IRS.gov, find tax info for travelers, including allowable deductions and more.
- TravelTax — Most people hate doing taxes, and it gets even more complicated when you’re a travel nurse and work in different states or even countries, so a knowledgeable international tax consultant like TravelTax helps.
General Nursing Resources
Here are some general nursing resources of interest to travel nurses.
- U.S. Postal Service — Set up your change of address online, set start date, extend forwarding — and never worry about your mail getting to you when you’re away on assignment.
- Craigslist — Craigslist is a general resource that has localized versions in many countries, where you can source goods and services by location, as necessary — which is handy when you’re working in a brand new location.
- Scrubs Lifestyle Nursing Magazine — Scrubs is general nursing career resources magazine and site with occasional articles on traveling nursing, such as 5 tips for picking the right travel nurse recruiter.
- Travel Nursing Central — Travel Nursing Central is a wealth of resources, including various checklists, tools, housing and other info, tax advice and recruiter rankings for travel nurses.
- NCSBN – National Council of State Boards of Nursing — The NCSBN site is a resource for nurses who need to check their qualification to work in a certain state, as well as to find information about exams and licensure, updates on news and events and more.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention — The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) regularly publish updates about travelers’ health, alerts and more.
- United States Department of Health and Human Services | HHS.gov — U.S. Dept of Health and Human Services posts not just health news from around the country but also info on jobs, contracts, grants and more.