Go Off the Beaten Path on Your Next Travel Nurse Assignment
So you’re thinking about travel nursing. Or maybe you’re already a travel nurse and you’re looking for your next assignment. Sure, you’ve heard about—and possibly already experienced—great travel nurse jobs in Alaska, California, Florida, or Texas. But don’t forget, there are 50 states, and many, many cities to experience and explore. Maybe it’s time to practice your top notch clinical skills in some places you might not have originally considered, such as Wisconsin, New Mexico, Massachusetts, West Virginia, and Idaho.
Before we dive into the enticing details about each of these states, now is a good time to consider a key factor of being a travel RN: cost of living. Depending on the city you choose, your cost of living can be dramatically different, and it’s good to remember that a bit more expendable income could make a huge difference in your experience.
Let’s get going.
Wisconsin (with pay rates ranging from $40-$62/hr)
Are you a fan of hiking scenic trails? Shopping for fresh farm fare? Cheese? For hiking, you’ll want to check out all the stunning natural attractions, like Manitou Falls in Pattison State Park, the Cave in the Mounds in Blue Mounds, and the quartzite bluffs of Devil’s Lake State Park. Then there are the cities. Madison has five sparkling lakes, great farmers markets, and lots of live music. Lakeside Milwaukee is fun and eclectic with a lively brewery scene, museums, and theatres. Green Bay may be most famous for the Green Bay Packers, but with its historic sights, museums, and performing arts scene, it has loads of small town charm paired with big city excitement. Oh, and did we mention cheese? Get yourself to a facility in Wisconsin and on your time off check out these cheese tours.
New Mexico (with pay rates ranging from $37-$54/hr)
Do you crave a better understanding of Native American culture? Would you love to see the colors of the desert? Vibrant Native American pueblos, cliff dwellings, and White Sands? These are places you simply can’t experience anywhere else. Albuquerque has all of the amenities of any large American city, only with great southwestern food, living history museums, and year-round festivals. Santa Fe is home to the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum and it’s at the foot of two national forests and a national preserve. The hiking is incredible, with pastel mountain views, and during your off time, you can even go skiing in nearby Taos.
Massachusetts (with pay rates ranging from $40-$67/hr)
Are you excited about the wicked good historic scene in Boston? Do you like the idea of walking the cobblestone streets and picturing Paul Revere’s midnight ride? How about getting away for the weekend to the coastal and island towns of Martha’s Vineyard, Nantucket, or Cape Cod? Experiencing fine farm-to-table fare and fall foliage in the Berkshires? It’s hard to believe that all of this can happen in just one state. When you aren’t taking care of patients at your new facility, you can even go back in time at Plimouth Plantation in Plymouth, or explore the sights of Salem.
West Virginia (with pay rates ranging from $40-$46/hr)
Are you looking for a place offering wild outdoor adventures, like white water rafting? Would you like to experience a coal mine in Beckley? Or maybe after a particularly hard week at the facility, you can reward yourself with a soak in a mineral spring at the Salt Cave and Spa or stargaze at off-the-beaten-trail Spruce Knob. Or, check out any of these 32 Best Mountain Adventures to add some adventure to your travel nurse experience. In addition to the walkable historic streets of Charleston and close proximity to Washington, DC, there are several small towns with vibrant scenes of their own you’ll enjoy exploring.
Idaho (with pay rates ranging from $36-$55/hr)
Of course you’re already thinking about patients – but in Idaho you can also think about potatoes. During your time off you can head to Boise and hit one of the farmers markets, have a local craft brew and a traditional dinner at The Basque Market. Head north to the lakeside playground of Coeur d’Alene, then up to beautiful Sandpoint on Lake Pend Oreille, surrounded by the Selkirk and Cabinet mountains. There are many ski resorts, and, yes, you can learn all about potatoes at the Idaho Potato Museum.
There are so many beautiful places to experience and explore, so go ahead and broaden your horizons a bit more as you embark on your next travel nursing assignment. Even the most unexpected places have so much to offer. And remember: the cost of living in some of these states may make it more possible for you to be more adventurous during your time off from the facility. Check out the Advantage RN job finder and learn about our opportunities in these states. Then, get ready to start your adventure!