Travel nurses receive high pay for their time, travel costs, and often living stipends to boot. But, where should you consider working if you want to work as a travel nurse? Here are the seven best cities for travel nurses. We’ll discuss why they made it on the list and the unique benefits of each.
New York City, New York
New York City rivals the pay rates paid in northern California and has equally dizzying rents. If you can crash in someone’s apartment or get a housing allowance so you don’t spend most of your rent to sleep somewhere other than on the streets, NYC is a great place for travel nurses to work. You can view all of the tourist attractions, enjoy museums and theaters on your nights off.
Nurses in San Francisco regularly earn $125,000 a year when salaried. Travel nurses earn even more because they are on contract. The only caveat here is the high rent in the area, but if your employer provides rent or you can find affordable accommodations in a city known for costing $3,000 for a one-bedroom apartment, it’s affordable.
Los Angeles, California
While San Francisco and northern California are among the top spots for nurses in search of a high paycheck, southern Californian cities like L.A. are almost as good for pay but a little more affordable in terms of living expenses. That again doesn’t matter if you have a good contract. Another benefit of finding work in the area is that you may be able to gain experience in world-class hospitals like Cedars-Sinai or UCLA Medical Center for your resume.
Colorado offers a much better pay rate than average and the recreational opportunities are amazing year-round. Cities like Aspen in the winter are winter sports meccas and you’d be staying there to handle the influx of sports enthusiasts.
Another benefit is that this is a compact state. That means it is part of the enhanced nursing licensing compact and if you have a license in another compact state, you won’t have to earn additional licenses or credentials in that state. And those who complete online doctoral nursing programs there will be recognized by other compact states.
Colorado has actually been at the forefront of recognizing and supporting nurse practitioners, opening a nurse-run clinic around 2011. Colorado is one of the Western states that don’t require graduates of online doctoral nursing programs to work under the supervision of a doctor, so you’re free to work almost anywhere and in any type of facility.
If you’re willing to work in a large city, Boston is a fantastic choice. Boston is actually one of the best paid cities in the US for travel nurses, with many earning over a six figure salary annually. Boston is also a city that serves a large population, and as you might expect, it is home to some of the best and most sophisticated medical equipment in the country. This makes it an excellent option for those who want to work in a top notch facility.
Dallas in Texas is continually crying out for nurses, with travel nurses also being in high demand. According to statistics, over 1500 travel nurse positions became available in the city between March 2013 and February 2014. Due to the demand, the salary of registered nurses is also high. Phoenix, Seattle and Denver are in a similar situation to Dallas, and could be more suitable to those who would rather live further north.
Florida has an older than average population that sees an even greater influx during the winter from Snowbirds, retirees who spend summers up North. Demand for travel nurses is highest in the winter but can be high in the summer, too, for tourist areas. This is an excellent place to consider working if you want to spend your days off on the beach or visiting Disney theme parks.
All these destinations have something to offer to travel nurses and they are also great places to visit. So, if you’re looking for a great city to live and work in, consider one of these five options.