Why Become a Travel Nurse?

Travel nursing offers a unique and exciting career path for registered nurses. It allows professionals to use their skills in various locations and settings, experience new cultures, and meet diverse people. In addition to these enriching experiences, travel nursing often comes with competitive compensation, comprehensive benefits, and opportunities for continued professional growth. This career path can be especially attractive for those who value flexibility and variety in their work.

Online Nursing Programs That Might Interest You

Learn about start dates, transferring credits, availability of financial aid, and more by contacting the universities below.

Reasons to Become a Travel Nurse:

  • Adventure and Exploration: Travel nursing allows you to work in different parts of the country or even internationally, experiencing new places and cultures.
  • Professional Growth: Exposure to different healthcare systems and patient populations can broaden your skills and knowledge.
  • Competitive Compensation: Travel nurses often earn higher salaries compared to their stationary counterparts.
  • Comprehensive Benefits: Many travel nurse agencies offer benefits like housing stipends, travel reimbursement, health insurance, and retirement plans.
  • Variety in Work: Working in various locations and settings can keep your career dynamic and exciting.
  • Flexibility: Travel nursing contracts typically last for a few months, allowing you to choose when and where you want to work.
  • Networking Opportunities: Working in different hospitals or healthcare facilities provides opportunities to make connections in the nursing field across the country.

What Is a Travel Nurse?

A travel nurse is a registered nurse who takes short-term assignments in locations where there is a high need for nurses. These assignments can be anywhere in the country or even internationally and typically last 13-26 weeks, though they can be shorter or longer. The role of a travel nurse is similar to that of a regular RN – providing patient care, administering medications, and working collaboratively with a healthcare team.

Key Points about Travel Nurses:

  • Location Variety: Travel nurses work across different locations, filling gaps in areas with nursing shortages.
  • Short-Term Assignments: Assignments typically last for a few months, providing a variety in the work environment.
  • Patient Care: Just like regular RNs, travel nurses provide care to patients, including administering medications and monitoring health conditions.
  • High Demand: Travel nurses often work in areas where there is a high need for nursing staff, such as in remote locations or during a health crisis.
  • Agency Employment: Most travel nurses work for travel nursing agencies that coordinate their assignments, accommodation, and benefits.
  • Competitive Pay: Travel nurses often receive higher pay rates than regular staff nurses due to the high demand and temporary nature of their work.
  • Personal and Professional Growth: The diverse experiences of travel nursing can contribute to both personal and professional growth.

Qualifications and Job Duties

To become a travel nurse, you must first become a registered nurse (RN). This involves earning a nursing degree (either an Associate Degree in Nursing or Bachelor of Science in Nursing), passing the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN), and obtaining a state nursing license. Specific travel nursing requirements may vary by agency, but typically include at least one year of experience in a specialized field.

Travel nurses perform similar duties to those of staff nurses but in a more temporary and variable context. They need to adapt quickly to new environments and teams, and be flexible and capable in their nursing practice.

Job DutyDescription
Patient AssessmentConduct patient evaluations, monitor vital signs, and report findings to doctors or other healthcare professionals.
Care Plan ImplementationImplement care plans for patients based on their specific health conditions and needs.
Medication AdministrationAdminister medications as prescribed by doctors and monitor patients for any side effects.
Patient EducationProvide education to patients and their families about their health conditions and care plans.
Team CollaborationCollaborate with a team of healthcare professionals to provide patient care.
Record KeepingMaintain accurate and timely patient records, including treatment plans, medical histories, and medications.
Procedural AssistanceAssist doctors with procedures and treatments, such as wound care, IV placement, or physical examinations.
Emergency ResponseRespond to emergencies and provide critical care as needed.
AdaptabilityQuickly adapt to new settings, teams, and patient populations.
CommunicationCommunicate effectively with patients, families, and healthcare teams.

The ability to adapt quickly and provide high-quality care in unfamiliar settings is crucial for travel nurses. They must stay updated on the latest nursing practices and maintain their certifications. Membership in professional organizations, such as the American Nurses Association or American Travel Health Nurses Association, can provide resources and opportunities for networking and professional development.

How to Become a Travel Nurse

Becoming a travel nurse involves several steps, starting from your basic nursing education to gaining experience in your field of choice.

Steps to Become a Travel Nurse:

  1. Earn a Nursing Degree: You must first earn a nursing degree, either an Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) or Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN).
  2. Pass the NCLEX-RN: After completing your nursing program, you’ll need to pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to become a licensed registered nurse.
  3. Gain Experience: Most travel nursing agencies require at least one year of experience in a specialized field. This helps ensure that you have the necessary skills to perform your duties efficiently.
  4. Choose a Specialization: While not always required, having a specialization can make you more competitive as a travel nurse. Common specializations include critical care, emergency room, labor and delivery, and operating room nursing.
  5. Apply to Travel Nursing Agencies: Travel nursing agencies will help match you with assignments that fit your skills and preferences. They also handle your housing and benefits.
  6. Accept an Assignment: Once matched with an assignment, you’ll review the details and, if it’s a good fit, accept the assignment.
  7. Travel and Work: You’ll then travel to your assignment location and start working.

After completing each assignment, you can choose to take another assignment, take some time off, or even accept a permanent position. Remember to keep your skills and certifications up-to-date and maintain good relationships with your travel nursing agency and the facilities where you work. For professional support and resources, consider joining organizations like the American Travel Health Nurses Association or the Emergency Nurses Association.

Typical Classes and Ways to Prepare to Become a Travel Nurse

Travel nursing is a rewarding but challenging career that requires a broad base of knowledge and skills. As part of your nursing education, you’ll take classes in various fields related to nursing and health care.

Typical Classes for Travel Nurses:

  • Anatomy and Physiology: Understanding the human body and its functions is fundamental for providing quality patient care.
  • Nursing Fundamentals: This course introduces students to the basic concepts and skills in nursing.
  • Pharmacology: Nurses need to understand how medications work, how they interact, and how to administer them safely.
  • Pathophysiology: This class teaches how diseases affect the body, helping nurses to understand the symptoms and treatments for various conditions.
  • Medical Surgical Nursing: This course covers a broad range of health problems and the nursing care for those conditions.
  • Pediatric Nursing: If you’re interested in working with children, this course will cover their specific health care needs.
  • Community Health Nursing: This class addresses the health care needs of communities and populations, which is particularly relevant for travel nurses who often work in diverse communities.

You can explore specific nursing programs, such as the Bachelor of Science in Nursing program at Johns Hopkins School of Nursing, for more detailed course descriptions.

5 Ways You Can Prepare to Become a Travel Nurse

  • Gain Experience in a Specialized Area: Specializing in an area of nursing, such as critical care or pediatrics, can make you more competitive as a travel nurse.
  • Cultivate Adaptability: As a travel nurse, you’ll need to quickly adapt to new environments and teams. Developing this skill can be as simple as seeking new experiences or learning to handle change effectively.
  • Develop Strong Communication Skills: Travel nurses work with a variety of people, from different health care teams to diverse patient populations, so strong communication skills are essential.
  • Understand the Role of a Travel Nurse: Research the role, responsibilities, and lifestyle of a travel nurse to ensure it’s a good fit for you.
  • Stay Current: Keep up-to-date with the latest nursing practices, techniques, and research.

Entering the field of travel nursing requires preparation and dedication. However, the personal and professional rewards it offers can be unparalleled. Staying connected with professional organizations, such as the American Nurses Association or American Travel Health Nurses Association, can provide additional resources and support as you embark on this exciting career path.

Benefits of Being a Travel Nurse

Travel nursing is an exciting and rewarding career for many nurses who choose this path. Not only does it provide the chance to explore new places, but it also offers numerous professional and personal benefits.

Key Benefits of Being a Travel Nurse:

  1. Travel Opportunities: Travel nursing offers the chance to work in various locations across the country or even internationally. This provides a unique opportunity to explore new places and cultures.
  2. Competitive Compensation: Travel nurses often receive competitive pay rates, including housing stipends, travel allowances, and bonuses.
  3. Flexible Schedules: Travel nursing assignments typically last 13 weeks, but the duration can vary. This flexibility allows travel nurses to take time off between assignments if they choose.
  4. Professional Development: Working in different healthcare settings provides diverse experiences and learning opportunities. This can help travel nurses broaden their skills and knowledge.
  5. Network Expansion: Travel nurses meet and work with healthcare professionals from all over, expanding their professional network.
  6. Housing Benefits: Travel nursing agencies often provide furnished housing or housing stipends, making relocation easier.
  7. Adventure: Being a travel nurse is a way to merge your love for nursing and adventure. You get to meet new people, experience different work environments, and explore new cities.

Travel nursing can be a perfect fit for those who seek diversity and adventure in their nursing career. It offers a chance to grow professionally and personally while offering a unique work-life balance. The American Travel Health Nurses Association is a great resource for travel nurses, offering networking opportunities, continuing education, and more.

Online Nursing Programs That Might Interest You

Learn about start dates, transferring credits, availability of financial aid, and more by contacting the universities below.

Typical Places a Travel Nurse Works

Travel nurses have the opportunity to work in various healthcare settings across the country and even globally. Here are some common places travel nurses work:

  1. Hospitals: Large teaching hospitals to small, rural hospitals, travel nurses can work in various hospital settings depending on their preferences and skills.
  2. Clinics: Travel nurses may work in outpatient clinics providing care to patients in the community.
  3. Rehabilitation Centers: Travel nurses often assist patients recovering from surgeries, injuries, or illnesses in rehabilitation centers.
  4. Nursing Homes: Travel nurses may work in long-term care facilities or nursing homes, providing care to elderly patients.
  5. Home Health Agencies: Some travel nurses work in home health, providing nursing care to patients in their own homes.
  6. Schools: Travel nurses can work as school nurses, providing health services to students and staff.
  7. Correctional Facilities: Some travel nurses choose to work in correctional facilities, providing healthcare to inmates.
  8. Urgent Care Centers: Urgent care centers often hire travel nurses to help with the fast-paced nature of these facilities.
  9. Research Facilities: Travel nurses can work in research facilities, contributing to medical advancements.
  10. Cruise Ships: Some travel nurses work on cruise ships, providing medical care to passengers and crew.

The variety of settings allows travel nurses to choose assignments that align with their interests, skills, and career goals. It’s important to consider the patient population, facility size, and location when choosing assignments. The American Nurses Association provides resources that can help travel nurses navigate different working environments.

Salary and Job Outlook

The earning potential for travel nurses is often higher than that of staff nurses due to the urgent need and temporary nature of the assignments.

Here are some key points about the salary and job outlook for travel nurses:

  1. Competitive Compensation: Travel nurses typically earn a competitive salary. However, the actual amount can vary significantly depending on the nurse’s specialization, level of experience, location of the assignment, and the urgency of the job opening.
  2. Additional Perks: Besides the base salary, travel nurses often receive non-taxable stipends for housing and living expenses, which can substantially increase their overall compensation.
  3. Job Security: The demand for travel nurses tends to remain steady, providing job security for those in the profession.
  4. Job Outlook: The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts a faster-than-average growth rate for registered nursing positions, including travel nurses, due to an aging population and a higher demand for healthcare services.
  5. Negotiable Salary: Since travel nurses often fill urgent job openings, they are sometimes in a position to negotiate their pay rate and other contract terms.

It’s recommended to work with a reputable travel nursing agency that offers transparency about pay rates and benefits. These agencies can also assist with the negotiation process.

Frequently Asked Questions About Travel Nursing

  1. What qualifications do I need to become a travel nurse?
  • You need to be a registered nurse with at least one year of experience in your specialty. Some travel nursing agencies may require additional experience or certifications.
  1. How long are travel nursing assignments?
  • Most travel nursing assignments last 13 weeks, but they can range from 8 weeks to 26 weeks depending on the contract.
  1. Can I choose where I want to work as a travel nurse?
  • Yes, you can typically choose the location of your assignment. However, availability depends on the current job openings and your specialty.
  1. Are housing and travel expenses covered?
  • Many travel nursing agencies provide a housing stipend and reimburse travel expenses, but this can vary by contract.
  1. Is travel nursing right for me?
  • Travel nursing is ideal for those who are flexible, enjoy traveling, and are comfortable adapting to new environments and working conditions.

Check the National Council of State Boards of Nursing for more information on nursing practice and licensure.

Resources and Further Reading

  1. American Travel Health Nurses Association
  2. National Council of State Boards of Nursing
  3. American Nurses Association
  4. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics – Registered Nurses


  1. “Travel Nurse’s Bible (A Guide to Everything on Travel Nursing)” by David Morrison
  2. “Highway Hypodermics: Travel Nursing 2020” by Epstein LaRue

Explore additional nursing careers with this link.

FAQ to Become a Travel Nurse

What Travel Nurses Do?

Obtain vital signs, administer medications, perform assessments, delegate tasks to LPNs and aides, assist with activities of daily living (ADLs), work with a multidisciplinary team to care for their patients, carry out orders as prescribed by providers.

Where Do Travel Nurses Work?

Generally in the hospital setting, in a variety of specialties, from Med/Surg, to Emergency Care, to Intensive Care.

What Are the Employment Projections for Travel Nurses?

The nursing profession is expected to grow at a rate of 16% between 2014 and 2024; due to the nursing shortage, the travel nursing job outlook is even greater. The United States Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts a 19% growth by the year 2022.

How Much Do Travel Nurses Earn?

The travel nurse salary is highly variable. The salary is based on prior nursing experience, the location of the assignment, and the length of the assignment that is taken.  For this reason, there is no “average” travel nurse salary – but it is typically higher than the average RN salary, which is about $68,000.

How Long Does it Take to Become a Travel Nurse?

Most travel agencies require that their RNs to have been practicing at least a year.

What Are the Requirements to Become a Travel Nurse?

Agencies will require an RN degree – most will have a minimum requirement of an associate degree. All will require RN licensure prior to signing a contract.  For travel nurses who are working in advanced specialties, such as OB, ICU, and the OR, additional years of experience may be required.

Online Nursing Programs That Might Interest You

Learn about start dates, transferring credits, availability of financial aid, and more by contacting the universities below.

8 Ways to Make More Money as A Travel Nurse

  • Per Diem Work and Pick Up Extra Shifts: Most assignments are booked for a set number of weeks. Let the healthcare facility and agency know that you are happy to pick up extra shifts or extend your weeks to earn more money.
  • Maintain Nursing Licenses in Multiple States: Travel nurses must have licensure in every state they practice, but they can obtain a multistate license via the Nurse Licensure Compact (NLC). You have more states you can accept assignments from when you get a multistate license,
  • Become More Specialized: Specialty areas such as Surgical nursing or Intensive Care Nursing require additional certifications. However, nurses with acute-care experience can make up to $110,000 or more.
  • Take up High Demand Assignments: Travel nurses willing and able to respond to an urgent natural disaster assignment can make very lucrative pay.
  • Work in COVID Crises Areas: If a travel nurse is willing to put herself in harm’s way at a facility with a crisis COVID situation, they can earn higher rates.
  • Refer a Traveler: Some Agencies or healthcare facilities may pay a referral fee if a travel nurse refers another travel nurse for an assignment.
  • Rapid Response and “Crisis” Assignments: Travel nurses ready to go within hours to a facility with an immediate critical need or crisis can earn a higher hourly salary.
  • Agency Bonus: Some agencies will offer a signing bonus for travel nurses who sign on for critical or hard-to-place assignments.

9 Highest-Paying Travel Nurse Specialties

Nurses who pursue these in-demand specialized certifications benefit from employment possibilities with more responsibility and autonomy, higher levels of compensation, and opportunities for career advancement. Specialties that require additional training or certifications tend to pay more. 

Job TitleHourly WageMonthly PayAnnual Salary
ICU Travel Nurse$59$10,187$122,242
CATH Lab Travel Nurse$57$9,935$119,226
Traveling Contract$55$9,530$114,358
NICU Travel Nurse$55$9,528$114,338
International NICU Travel Nurse$55$9,509$114,109
Virtual NICU Travel Nurse$55$9,506$114,067
Teen NICU Travel Nurse$55$9,493$113,922
Operating Room Travel Nurse$55$9,467$113,610
Emergency Room Travel Nurse$53$9,242$110,906
Source: Zip Recruiter

10 Best States for Travel Nursing Opportunities

One of the incredible benefits of becoming a travel nurse is that you can usually choose where you want to work. You may want to select a popular destination that is popular with tourists so you can enjoy your days off. For those new to nursing, you may want to choose a destination that will allow you to work at some of the best healthcare facilities. A travel nurse with a family may be more interested in great places to raise a family. No matter what you are seeking, here are some of the best states for travel nurses.

  • California: Sunny California attracts many travel nurses due to its beaches, attractions, and cultural activities. The Golden State boasts a high hourly wage of $43 for travel nurses. There are over 1400 travel nurse jobs currently available in California.
  • Florida: The Sunshine State attracts travel nurses due to its year-round climate, beaches, and abundance of things to do. Retirees flock to Florida year-round, so the state pays a high hourly wage of $43 for travel nurses and boasts a decent cost of living and no income tax. There are over 1200 travel nurse jobs currently available in Florida.
  • Texas: As the largest state in the U.S., The Lone Star state attracts travel nurses interested in the great outdoors. While Texas pays one of the lower hourly wages at $39, it has a low cost of living and no income tax, making it easy to save a lot of money. Texas has a critical need for travel nurses, with over 2,000 travel nurse jobs available.
  • Georgia: Georgia is a fantastic blend of history and modern, deep rural south and cosmopolitan city, mountains, and beaches. The Peach State offers the peacefulness of  the Blue Ridge mountains and excitement of Atlanta, the gateway to the south., and August, home of the Master’s Golf Tournament. Georgia pays a high hourly wage for travel nurses at $46 and has a moderate cost of living. There are 712 travel nurse jobs available.
  • Arizona: The sunny Arizona desert attracts travel nurses and retirees fascinated with native cultures due to its deep Hispanic and Indian heritage roots. Cultural architecture, art, and cuisine are celebrated in the Grand Canyon State. Arizona offers a high hourly wage of $47 and provides the opportunity to work at some of the country’s most respected medical centers. There are currently 326 travel nurse job openings.
  • North Carolina: North Carolina of the great outdoors and thriving cities boasting high growth, robust business growth, and world-class healthcare. In U.S. News & World Report’s listing of 150 Best Places to Live in the U.S., North Carolina had eight cities included. While the Tar Heel state has one of the lowest hourly wage rates at $36, it has a moderate cost of living and natural amenities. There are 878 travel nurse jobs available.
  • Virginia: Virginia was one of the original 13 colonies close to our nation’s capital. Virginia boasts some of the most scenic landscapes in the U.S., with beautiful mountain ranges, beaches, and green space. With 65 state and national parks, Virginia is a nature and outdoor sports lover’s dream. Old Dominion offers a high travel nurse hourly wage at $46.  There are 630 travel nurse jobs available.
  • Illinois: Illinois offers travel nurses everything from quaint midwestern towns in central and southern Illinois to the thriving metropolis of Chicago. Relax in the Garden of the Gods or the Anderson Japanese Gardens or revel in the symphony, art galleries, and theatres. Illinois boasts nine renowned hospitals at which to advance your skills. Travel nurses’ hourly wage is at the lower end of the spectrum at $39; however, the benefits of professional advancement are huge.  There are 665 travel nurse jobs available.
  • Hawaii: Landing a travel nurse assignment in the Aloha State is very competitive because of its tropical island climate, beauty, and culture. Hawaii is one of the highest hourly wage states at $48. However, living is expensive. There are 11 current travel nurse openings.
  • Alabama: Alabama has much to offer travel nurses interested in a great place to settle with family. Small towns provide southern charm and hospitality, and larger cities offer rich culture and various healthcare facilities to advance your career. In the Heart of Dixie, you can enjoy the beaches along the Gulf of Mexico, numerous state parks, and some of the most important Civil Rights sites and monuments in the nation. In U.S. News & World Report’s listing of 150 Best Places to Live in the U.S., Alabama had five  cities included. Alabama pays a decent hourly wage of $45 and has a low cost of living. There are 141 travel nurse jobs currently available.

What is the Job Outlook for Travel Nurses?

Job prospects for nursing is expected to boom – according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, between the years of 2012 and 2022, nursing is expected to grow by 19 percent – “faster than the average for all occupations.”

And because the job market is increasing exponentially, the need for travel nursing continues to grow.  Travel nurses help fill in the “gaps” when there are not enough nurses in a facility, when there is an increase in patient needs – or for other reasons.

The Aureus Medical Group note that “…many baby boomers are expected to enter retirement age during this time period, which means that there will be a greater demand to care for an aging population. Some of the most pressing medical conditions in the U.S. affect this exact demographic, including dementia, diabetes, obesity and arthritis.”  As such, there is a higher need for nurses – and travel nurses.

Highest- and Lowest-Paying States for Travel Nurses

There are many factors to consider when calculating salary.  As such, it is difficult to calculate the annual income of a traveling nurse.

For example, if you choose a traveling assignment in Maine, you may earn a different hourly rate than you would make if you were to choose a traveling assignment in California.  You may also earn a different housing stipend in each location, depending on the cost of living.  What about overtime?  It will depend on the facility – one facility may pay you overtime over forty hours of work, while another may pay you overtime over eight hours of work.

StateHourly WageMonthly PayAnnual Salary
New Hampshire$55$9,561$114,733
New Jersey$47$8,143$97,718
New Mexico$43$7,448$89,378
New York$57$9,845$118,144
North Carolina$36$6,190$74,277
North Dakota$45$7,812$93,746
Rhode Island$46$7,933$95,202
South Carolina$42$7,264$87,173
South Dakota$44$7,583$91,000
West Virginia$49$8,554$102,648
Source: https://www.ziprecruiter.com/Salaries/What-Is-the-Average-Travel-Nurse-Salary-by-State

Top 10 Cities to Become a Travel Nurse

Many people believe that higher pay rates are found near large metropolitan areas in the U.S. However, there can be many reasons healthcare employers would pay a high hourly wage. Some areas of the country have a severe nursing shortage.  Many rural, isolated, or less desirable destinations have difficulty finding skilled nurses and pay accordingly. 

CityHourly WageMonthly PayAnnual Salary
San Jose, CA$58$10,029$120,349
Oakland, CA$57$9,915$118,976
Tanaina, AK$57$9,873$118,477
Wasilla, AK$57$9,873$118,477
Summersville, WV$57$9,856$118,269
Hayward, CA$56$9,707$116,480
Jackson, WY$56$9,696$116,355
Norwalk, CT$56$9,670$116,043
Seattle, WA$56$9,639$115,669
Vallejo, CA$56$9,637$115,648
Source: BLS

San Jose, CA, is the capital of Silicon Valley, and the largest city in Northern California. It has a diverse population of over 1 million people. San Jose offers a variety of cultural and performing arts, and outdoor activities. Unemployment is low, and the is a great need for specialized skills. A very affluent city, San Jose has the third-largest GDP globally. San Jose’s cost of living is 49% higher than the national average due to the highly inflated housing market. Most people live outside the downtown area in the suburbs. The city ranks the worst in the nation for traffic.

Oakland, CA, is a key West Coast port city and is the third-largest city in the San Francisco Bay area. Oakland has an ethnically diverse population of roughly 450,000. Oakland is a significant haven for artists, designers, musicians, and others involved in the arts. Oakland is renowned for its restaurants and ethnic cuisines and boasts some of the best bars and nightclubs in the nation. Oakland boasts two redwood parks and several outdoor activities, despite its urban nature. The city’s living costs are below that of most other California cities; however, housing prices are three times as high as the U.S. average. In deep East and West Oakland, crime rates are higher than in other dense urban areas, nationally and statewide.

Tanaina, AK is a part of the Anchorage, Alaska metro statistical area with a diverse population of 10,249. 50% of the population is primarily families with a median age of 32 years old. The median family income is $71,629, and 7.5% live below the poverty line. Most residents own their homes in a rural community with parks, restaurants, and good schools. Anchorage is the largest city in Alaska, so employment opportunities for Tanaina residents are plentiful. The cost of living is high and is 19.6% higher than the national average. However, Alaska has no state income tax. Adjusting to life in Alaska can be challenging as Alaska is geographically isolated from the rest of the U.S., and the summers consist of 24 hours of daylight. Snow, the outdoors, and the wildlife are a constant.

Wasilla, AK is the fourth largest city in Alaska, located at the northern point of Cook Inlet, and is part of the Anchorage, Alaska metro statistical area. Wasilla is Sarah Palin’s hometown and was the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race headquarters for many years. It has a diverse population of 9,054. 43.5% of the people are families, and the median age is thirty. The median family income is $53,792, with 9.6% living below the poverty line. About 35% of Wasilla residents commute to Anchorage. Many of the remaining residents are commercial fishermen or suppliers of wood, steel, or concrete products. Wasilla is a growing community and a good blend of big city conveniences with small-town feeling. Housing expenses are 13% higher than the national average, and the cost of living is 26% higher than the national average. Wasilla has one of the higher crime rates in America due to high levels of theft, vandalism, and drug crimes.

Summersville, WV is a small town located in the mountains of Nicholas County, West Virginia, with a population of 3,572. In 2016, flooding almost destroyed the town. The Middle School was damaged, and education had to be relocated to a modular trailer while they built a new school. In 2020, the new Middle school, High School, and Career and Technical Center opened. The median income in Summersville is $43,314, and 12.7% of the population lives below the poverty line. The median age is 49, and the city’s population has declined over the past five years. Primarily a rural community, the cost of living and crime rate are low. Few opportunities for employment exist outside of the Summersville Lake & Dam, the Carnifex Ferry Battlefield State Park, or the Summersville Arena and Conference Center. Outdoor activities are plentiful, but the town has few restaurants and no nightlife.

Hayward, CA, is a small city in the East Bay region of San Francisco’s Bay area. Hayward’s population of 114,186 is highly diverse and dominated by families. Hayward’s is a historic area once dominated by Hunt’s food canneries and salt production. However, Hunt’s moved production to the Sacramento Valley in the 1980s, and salt production ceased. Now employment is primarily industrial support to Silicon Valley companies, and the unemployment rate is higher than the national average.  Hayward has a cost of living 65.4% higher than the national average. Dining, shopping, and free community events are the primary entertainment in Hayward. Hayward has a high crime rate compared to other communities of like size at 36 per one thousand people.

Jackson, WY is a small town with a population of 10,760 and is the county seat of Teton County. Affectionately referred to by tourists as “Jackson Hole,” it is a popular tourist destination due to the proximity to Yellowstone National Park, Grand Teton National Park, and three ski resorts. The median income for a family is $59,605, and 6.4% live below the poverty line. Most jobs are seasonal, and you may have to travel for worship or education. If you enjoy the outdoors and an active lifestyle, Jackson is excellent. The sost of living is fair, and taxes are low. Shopping, restaurants, music, and the arts are plentiful in Jackson, but the town is quiet. After the sun goes down. Jackson has a shortage of housing, and housing costs are high. Winters are long and cold, and summers are hot and crowded with tourists.

Norwalk, CT, is the sixth most populated city in Connecticut, with 91,184 people. Situated between New York’s metro area and Bridgeport, Norwalk lies along the northern shore of Long Island Sound. The median income is $76,161, and 8.4% of the population lives below the poverty line. Norwalk is mainly a working-class city. However, young professionals have been moving to Norwalk for the public schools and higher education system, which are above average. Although South Norwalk has some bad areas, the city has a low crime rate, and it is a good place to raise a family. However, the cost of living is high, and so are the taxes.

Seattle, WA, has 4 million people, and is the largest city in the Pacific Northwest region. Settle is a desirable place to settle down, buy a house, and raise a family. Seattle is an outdoor paradise surrounded by ocean, rivers, forest, lakes, and fields. As large metropolitan area, it offers thriving entertainment, food venues, and cultural arts.  Compared to other cities on the west coast with a high cost of living, Seattle allows travel nurses to keep more of their earnings.

Vallejo, CA is a small, diverse, waterfront city of 126,090 people in the North Bay region of the San Francisco Bay area. Vallejo is an affordable place to live for young families. The cost of living is below that of other cities in California, and many small businesses flourish in this city. The public school system gets low marks, but charter schools are available for those that can afford them.  Several years ago, the town went bankrupt, and the city sank into disrepair. Over the years, artists and remote workers from Silicon Valley moved in and cleaned up the town. There are still pockets of unsafe areas, but it is a decent place to live overall.

5 Top Travel Nursing Agencies

Triage Staffing

Triage has been listed on Inc. magazine’s list of 5000 Fastest-Growing Private Companies in America for the past six years. They have also been named in the Top 5 Best Travel Nurse Agencies for two years. Headquartered in Omaha, NE, Triage looks for the best ways to simplify life and the job hunting process for their travel nurses. Their culture is a team culture of respect, integrity, and reliability.

Gifted Healthcare

Headquartered in Dallas, TX, Gifted healthcare is a nurse-owned company. They carefully choose their nurses to ensure it is the best match for the client and provide the best career for their nurses. They place travel nurses in hospitals across the U.S.

Travel Nurse Across America Healthcare

TNAA Healthcare is headquartered in North Little Rock, AR. TNAA has been a top ten company every year since 2018. Their approach is to pair a travel nurse with a comprehensive customer support team that includes experienced recruiters and experts in housing, payroll, clinical care, and quality assurance. Travel nurses are matched with jobs across the nation’s top facilities.

Cariant Health Partners

For over 20 years, Cariant Health Partners has made the travel nurse a priority. Founded in Omaha, NE, by a nurse and a physical therapist, they provide personalized attention and communication, fast response, and custom contracts. Cariant seeks a long-term relationship with the travel nurses they employ.

Trusted Health

Trusted health does not use commissioned recruiters like most agencies. You create a personalized profile on their website, and they match you to their clients. Headquartered in San Francisco, CA, they work with first-time travel nurses to seasoned travel nurses throughout the 50 states.

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Become A Travel Nurse

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