How to Become a Travel Nurse

Are you looking for a position where you get to travel the country, work alongside medical professionals, and make a difference in the lives of patients? If so, a role as a travel nurse might be exactly what you’re looking for.

In this guide, we’ll explore everything you need to know about becoming a travel nurse, including what the role entails, the requirements for becoming a travel nurse, and more.

What is a Travel Nurse?

A travel nurse is a registered nurse (RN) who moves around the country to fill short-term employment gaps in various medical facilities. Travel nurses largely have the same roles and responsibilities as traditional RNs; however, travel nurses need to deliver the same high-quality care while regularly adjusting to new facilities and care areas.

How Does Travel Nursing Work?

When an RN opts for a travel nursing role, they fill a contract at a medical facility that has a short-term opening. Most travel nurse contracts are 13 weeks long, but they can be either longer or shorter. This means travel nurses typically move to new hospitals or other medical facilities roughly every three months. Travel nursing can take qualified RNs all over the country, as they fill openings as needed. Here at Sunbelt Staffing, we work with you to find travel nursing roles across the country and will also assist in relocation and housing assistance as you adjust to your new locations.

What Does a Travel Nurse Do?

As mentioned, once in a role, the responsibilities of travel nurses are largely the same as traditional RNs. The responsibilities include:

  • Evaluating and overseeing patients’ well-being
  • Dispensing medications
  • Delivering prescribed treatments
  • Educating patients on improving their health

Travel Nurse Requirements

Since travel nurses are traditional nurses who fill employment gaps across the country on a contract basis, the requirements for becoming a travel nurse are the same as becoming a nurse. This includes completing a nursing program with an associate or bachelor’s degree in nursing. While obtaining a bachelor’s degree typically takes longer than an associate degree, RNs with bachelor’s degrees often earn a higher salary, especially early on in their career. Travel nurses must also obtain a state license and pass the NCLEX-RN certification exam.

How Long Does it Take to Become a Travel Nurse?

The amount of time it takes to become a travel nurse depends on the degree. RNs who get a bachelor’s degree in nursing typically take four years of school while those who pursue an associate degree usually receive their degree within two years. The amount of time it takes to obtain all local licensing and certifications must also be factored in.

If you think a role in which you get to travel the country and provide assistance to patients and support doctors is one you might enjoy, explore our travel nursing job opportunities.

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