New Travelers: Top Tips for New Travelers

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By Uniti Med

October 5, 2022



Top Tips for New Travelers

Uniti Med provided this article.

Picture it: you’re about to start your journey as a travel healthcare professional. Congratulations! What an exciting time in your life! For many first-time travelers, however, it can also be challenging, stressful, and overwhelming. How do you navigate this new step in your career? What can you do to ease the process? Here are some of our top tips for new travelers.  

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Don’t be afraid to travel far from home  

Leaving your friends, family, and your current hospital or facility can be scary, especially if you have never left your home state. While moving away from everything you have ever known can be a challenge, it can also be equally rewarding. Working in a new facility can introduce you to new ways of doing your job and seeing things from a different point of view. You can also make friends from all over the country and go to places you never thought you’d go. Who knows, you may find your new home away from home! Remember, if you don’t like being far away, you can request your next assignment to be closer to home.  

Be flexible  

You might not always get your first choice for your assignment. Take a breath. It’s OK! Each assignment is temporary, and if you don’t like the place you’re in now, try something new next time. Additionally, any travel experience will open doors to more jobs along the way. Hospitals love to see a wide variety of assignments from their travelers. Open yourself to new experiences and locations. 

Mackenzie, a travel RN, says this: “Go into each assignment with an open mind and friendly face. You can make it through just about anything for 13 weeks, knowing there is an end in sight!”  

Be brave  

As we said, starting a travel career can be scary. Even with fear and uncertainties, remember to be brave. Bite the bullet. Take the leap. Freefall into the unknown. Say yes instead of no. You will never know until you try!  

Victoria, a travel CNA, suggests “stop fearing what could go wrong and start welcoming what can go right!” Tracy, an RN, said this: “For me, it wasn’t as scary as I thought it would be. Turned out really well!”  

Take it from these travelers; don’t let the fear of the unknown stop you from trying something new! 

Get out there!  

Once you make it to your first assignment, you might be a little lonely. You are in a new place with people you just met and are in unfamiliar territory. Get out there, make friends, and see what your new town has to offer. Remember, there are likely to be other travelers at your facility who have been where you are now. Reach out to them as well as the perm-staff. The more you put yourself out there, the more you will learn and grow as a professional and as an individual. 

A former traveler, Mikaela Cook, says to “go to all the local places!” There will be many restaurants, bars, breweries, coffee shops, and stores that you won’t have in your hometown. Make a point to check these places out before you make your move to your next assignment. 

You are not alone  

Starting anything new can be hard to get used to. Just remember that your recruiter and travel agency are always there for you. If you have questions, need assistance, or just want someone to talk to, they are only a phone call away. Traveling alone doesn’t mean you ARE alone. Don’t hesitate to reach out to your recruiter with anything; that’s what they’re there for!  

Starting a career in travel healthcare can be a culture shock. No hospital does it the same way, and walking into an unfamiliar place away from everyone you’ve ever known can be a lot to handle. When we have asked travel nurses what their advice would be for first-time travelers, many say that they wish they had started sooner. It’s never too late, but don’t sit on the sidelines forever. Make the move and start your journey!  

Our job board is a great place to search for your next travel nurse assignment. We have you covered with our housing page if housing is an issue. You can search for what you are looking for.

If you are a new travel nurse or looking into becoming a travel nurse:

Travel Nurse Guide: Step-by-Step (now offered in a PDF Downloadable version!)

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