Nurses pursuing travel nursing opportunities can earn a competitive salary and many other benefits. These include free housing, per diem allowances, and travel reimbursements. They also receive sign-on, completion, and retention bonuses. Travel nurses often have complex tax situations that may require the help of a professional tax adviser. They need to maintain well-organized files of contracts, receipts, and mileage logs.
As a travel nurse, you’ll have a lucrative earning potential. Many nurses choose to travel for the opportunity to earn high salaries while working shorter contracts, and these salaries are often much more generous than permanent staff positions.
In addition to lucrative base pay, many travel nursing agencies also offer benefits packages that can enhance your overall travel nurse salary and paycheck. These perks include housing stipends, travel reimbursements, and other tax-free allowances. When evaluating offers, consider all aspects of the contract to get a complete picture of your earnings.
Before entering into negotiations, determine the most important components of your travel nursing salary, such as the housing stipend or the tax-free travel reimbursement. Understanding your priorities will help you effectively communicate your needs to recruiters and negotiate a favorable contract.
In addition, if you’re confident in your ability to negotiate, you can increase your chances of receiving a desirable travel nursing pay package and assignment conditions. For example, you may secure a higher housing stipend or more hours by asserting your professional industry knowledge.
One of the top perks of travel nursing is the high pay rates, with some reaching six figures in a single year. These rates are usually double or more than traditional staff nurse rates, making this a highly lucrative career choice.
Travel nurses take temporary contracts — typically 13-week blocks — to fill temporary staffing shortages at healthcare facilities. This allows them to explore new locations while experiencing different medical practices and working with diverse healthcare professionals.
When negotiating your salary, consider which components of your paycheck are most important to you, such as the housing stipend or travel reimbursement, and focus on those areas when talking with your recruiter. It’s also important to track spending habits and ensure your budget stays aligned with the amounts you’re reimbursed.
Ask your travel nurse agency for a breakdown of the bill rate, which includes profit margins, payroll costs, insurance, and company overhead. This transparency will empower you to negotiate a higher salary with your agency.
Travel nurses are paid a competitive wage in high-demand locations. A travel nurse agency will typically provide pay rates for specific positions and a cost-of-living allowance to consider the lifestyle expenses associated with working in that location. These additional perks allow living comfortably while exploring new locations and building your nursing experience, skills, and resume.
Plus, travel nursing companies often offer their nurses incentives, rewards, and other gifts to motivate them during assignments. If you are a person who is financially savvy and tracks spending, you can save some of your travel nursing salary for the next appointment. Talk to a travel nurse recruiter today to learn more about the perks of this exciting career.
As a travel nurse, you are immersed in new communities and situations. It’s a great way to build your skills and resume while gaining professional growth and personal satisfaction.
Often, travel nurses receive reimbursements for housing and food expenses. These stipends can increase the average travel nurse’s salary by quite a bit and are partially tax deductible. Be sure to talk with your agency recruiter and a tax professional about your situation to ensure you receive the benefits you deserve.
Tucker combines his high income with smart spending habits to create a solid financial foundation that allows him to enjoy the benefits of travel nursing without blowing up his budget.
He has used his earnings to help his mother, invest in real estate, and give back to his community. He even set aside some funds to pay down his student loans and continue working toward his dream of buying a home.
The highest travel nurse salaries are in specialty areas requiring special training or specialized equipment. Nurses with specialty credentials such as cardio catheterization or oncology are often offered higher wages because they have a more in-demand skill set.
The type of assignment you choose can also significantly impact your earnings. For instance, nurses who take long overnight shifts in trauma centers earn more than those who work shorter daytime shifts in doctors’ offices.
Some agencies offer additional bonuses to entice nurses to accept assignments that may be in high demand or difficult to fill. These incentives can include sign-on, completion and retention bonuses, and free housing during your project.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, many hospitals struggled to maintain staffing levels because of a lack of qualified candidates and funding issues. This prompted some travel nursing agencies to offer twice their regular salaries for nurses willing to accept temporary assignments in hospitals with the greatest staffing needs.