We go to nursing school and have a dream of one day travel nursing. The high pay, the flexible work schedule, traveling around the world, it can be incredibly appealing. Once we pass our nclex it finally seems like that goal is in reach, but is travel nursing really for everyone?
1. The pros and cons of staff nursing
2. The pros and cons of travel nursing
3. How to decide on a goal if you start travel nursing
There are pros and cons to both types of nursing and its dependent upon which state you live in. Most travel nurses have about 1-2 years’ experience before they start traveling, but check with the hospital and the company you’ll work with.
So, what are the pros and cons of staff nursing?
Must be staff if changing specialties
Better hours (if you chose specialties like outpatient or procedural nursing)
Less flexibility (may get PTO denied) Understaffed and may have to do mandatory OT
What are the pros and cons of travel nursing?
Higher paying jobs
Less mandatory activities on top of 3x12s
Unlimited time off (can work time off into your contract) Traveling to new cities
Unstable pay (contracts may be canceled) Some companies don’t offer health insurance Moving every 3 months
Learning new hospitals/ environments
Getting 2 orientation shifts, then on the floor by yourself
When deciding to take a staff job or travel contract, set a goal.
Many nurses travel with the goal of making more money in order to save or to travel more often. Whatever you decide your goal is, make sure you know your goal you chose a travel contract. Just a friendly tip, sometimes the highest paying jobs, may not be the best!
Ultimately, they both have pros and cons, you just have to decide what you want your nursing career to look like! The beauty of nursing is that we ALWAYS have options!
Take home points:
1. There are pros and cons to staff nursing and travel nursing
2. Travel nursing can be great for adventure and making money 3. YOU get to decide what your nursing career gets to look like!