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Travel Nurse

Travel nurses are mobile nurses who travel domestically to work temporary short-term nursing positions within their field of medicine. Nurses are recruited by hospitals and travel nurse staffing agencies that offer payment, benefits and other incentives for their relocation. A travel nurse is called upon to fulfill clinical requirements, which last a minimum of one year within his or her specialty and licensure. Some travel nurses spend two or more years on a mission in order to better acquaint themselves with their new home, work responsibilities and varied assignments.

Travel nurses are licensed registered nurses (RNs) with an associate or bachelor’s degree in nursing or nursing diploma. In addition to a nursing education, students must take and pass the NCLEX-RN licensing exam in order to become a licensed registered nurse. Once these steps have been met, nurses will be ready to start travel assignments. However, nurses will have more mobility if their home state has joined the Nurse Licensure Compact (NLCA), which allows nurses to work in any compact state with their home state license. In addition, nurses must be in good standing with their home and compact state, as well as have adequate experience as a registered nurse.

According to PayScale, travel nurses are typically paid in hourly wages, with an average of $30 to $40 per hour. In addition, travel nurses often receive benefits, such as relocation costs, housing and insurance benefits that help them transition to another state. Travel nurses are often employed to balance the nursing shortage occurring in America by offering their expertise and knowledge to fellow nurses across the country.