As a gypsy travel nurse, you’re always on the go, which means having what you need when you need it is essential no matter where you are.
Unfortunately, the items you stow away in both your carry-on bag and your suitcase may vary depending on a variety of factors such as length of trip, destination, the traveling assignment, and so on. Because of this, it may feel exhausting to move from one duffle bag to the next, frantically packing for all the different traveling plans that lie ahead.
Luckily, there are a couple of universal packing tips all gypsy travel nurses can follow as they move from one trip to another. Read on to find out!
Here are four packing tips for the gypsy travel nurse:
1. Prioritize the Staple Pieces
Depending on the duration of your trip, the weather, and the travel assignment you’re on, the items you bring with you may vary. That said, it’s important to spend some time figuring out what staple piece items you’ll need and want with you. Of course, your scrubs are a must, but what other materials might also be a good idea to bring?
Try and think about what you’ll be doing outside of work. What activities might you do? What places might you go to? What restaurants and stores are nearby? Understanding this will help you figure out what is most necessary for your trip and what is not. Thereby allowing you to pack smarter, not harder.
As a pro tip, be sure to review the accessible laundry units nearby, as this will give you a better idea of how much clothing you’ll genuinely need throughout this time. If there is a washer and dryer nearby, limit the number of scrubs you bring with you and instead block out some time throughout your trip to tend to your dirty laundry. If there isn’t any in-unit laundry available, it may be in your best interest to purchase a space-saving storage bag to house your clothing so that you can vacuum seal it and make more space in your travel bag.
2. Simplify Your Beauty Routines with Fewer Products
When you’re constantly moving from one place to another, less is more when it comes to your beauty routine packing. Remember to only carry along the essentials related to your haircare, skincare, and makeup regimen. To ensure you’re packing lightly while also getting the most out of the products you bring with you, consider the following:
- Haircare: if you’ve ever struggled with frizzy hair in humid summers or a dry scalp in cold winters, you know that your hair is vulnerable to changes in the environment. Like your skin, your hair requires a constant need for upkeep, but that doesn’t necessarily take ten products to do so. In fact, a few products, such as a travel-sized shampoo, conditioner, detangler, heat protectant, and/or hair gel can oftentimes be more than enough to take care of your luxurious locks.
- Skincare: Your skin is inherently sensitive to different environments. Whether it’s more sunlight, warmer temperatures, or higher levels of humidity, it’s important to properly protect your skin while traveling. That said, focus on simplifying your beauty routine with skincare products equipped to treat your skin no matter where you are. This should include the basics: a makeup remover, cleanser, treatment, and moisturizer.
- Makeup: Throughout the duration of your trip, you’ll most likely be having to wake up in the wee hours of the morning and spend most of your day at the hospital you’re assigned to. With that in mind, it’s unlikely that you’ll have enough time each morning to put on a full face. For this reason, try to stick to just a few makeup products such as tinted moisturizer, concealer, blush, and mascara as these items will serve to support your look, as well as your luggage.
No matter what products you take with you on your next trip, don’t forget to adhere to the “liquids rule” required by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). As a reminder, any liquids stored in a carry-on bag should be in a container that’s 3.4 ounces or smaller. Any liquid item that falls outside of this should be stowed away in your checked baggage.
3. Always Pack a Portable Charger
Between extensive traveling, unconventional placements of outlets in hotels and apartments, to long shifts at the hospital, there is no telling when you’ll have time to charge your electronic devices. That’s why packing a portable charger with you is always a good idea. Although extension cords and power strips are also a practical solution for these issues, they’re quite bulky and inconvenient compared to a portable charger. Plus, when you’re constantly working long shifts, it’s unlikely that you’ll always have an outlet to plug in an extension cord or power strip, meaning the portable charger is your best bet.
Portable chargers are small and have a high battery charge capacity depending on the type of charger you get. So having one on hand will save you a lot of time and energy trying to navigate in an area that’s unfamiliar to you and stay connected with family, friends, and colleagues. To figure out the best option for you, check out this article to learn about the best portable chargers and power banks of 2021.
4. Utilize Travel Nurse Packing Apps
Even though the packing list you follow will be unique to you, your preferences, and the travel assignment you’re on, there is no reason to burden yourself with all the heavy lifting that comes before traveling. Believe it or not, there are actually apps out there that can assist you in packing and preparing for your upcoming trip, making it easier than ever to be well-equipped for the adventures that lie ahead.
Regardless of whether you’re an Android or IOS user, an app like PackPoint is just one of many apps out there that can benefit you while packing. Aside from automatically checking the weather of the location you are headed to, this app allows you to customize and build your packing list and even share it with other fellow travelers. This means that other gypsy nurses like yourself can access your personalized list and assist you along the way.
We hope you found these gypsy travel nurse packing tips helpful. Do you have any packing tips you would like to share with your fellow travel nurses? Comment them below.
Are you looking for your next travel nurse assignment? Click here to view our job board. Need housing for your assignment? Click here to view our housing page.