Travel Nurse Salary: What to Know · The Gypsy Nurse

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By AMN Healthcare

October 27, 2022



Travel Nurse Salary: What You Need To Know

AMN Healthcare provided this article.

When healthcare facilities need experienced nurses to fill nurse-to-patient ratios, they rely on travel nurses to fill in the void and get the job done. Travel nurses accept short-term assignments – typically thirteen weeks, to ensure high-quality patient care regardless of whether the healthcare facility has staffing shortages. Due to the flexible nature of the job and the experience the nurse brings to the table, travel nurses are typically paid more than permanent staff nurses.

Average Travel Nurse Salary

As of September 2022, the average travel nurse’s salary is $1,998 per week. (Indeed) There is potential for nurses to earn even more based on their location and specialty.

travel nurse salary

Highest Paying Travel Nursing Specialties

Speaking of specialties, the higher the demand for a nurse specialty, the higher the salary. The top five specialties for travel nurses include:

Cardiovascular Intensive Care Unit (CVICU) is the most sought-after nurse specialty because CVICU nurses are responsible for caring for patients after heart transplants and open-heart surgeries. CVICU nurses can generally earn $2,223 to $4,406 per week.

Labor and Delivery (L&D) nurses are also in high demand. These nurses are invaluable and work in the maternity wards. An L&D travel nurse generally earns anywhere from $2,342 to $6,231 per week.

Emergency Room (ER) nurses treat patients in critical condition and suffering from trauma or a condition requiring emergency attention. ER nurses can earn up to $1,900 to $4,284 per week.

Progressive Care Unit (PCU) is a high-demand nurse specialty. PCU nurses quickly think on their feet as they monitor patients’ vital signs. PCU nurses can earn up to $1,914 to $4,333 a week.

Telemetry (TELE) travel nurses monitor patients’ vital signs and assist doctors with various procedures. TELE travel nurses perform the same duties as nurses in permanent positions but earn $1,967 to $4,191 per week, depending on the assignment.

Highest Paying Travel Nurses Locations

The highest-paying travel nurse locations are typically always in California and New York; other cities outside of California and New York with high-paying contracts include; Orlando, FL., and Atlanta, GA. The highest-paying cities in the U.S. for travel nurses are New York, New York; San Diego, California; Denver, Colorado; Atlanta, Georgia; Orlando, Florida; Omaha, Nebraska; and Fort Myers, Florida. (Indeed)

As of September 2022, the states with the highest demand for travel nurses are California, New York, and Pennsylvania.

Traveling Nurse Competition and Benefits

Travel nurses are always in demand, but the competition is chasing the highest salary. Fortunately, salary can be supplemented with benefits. Some agencies offer benefits that may include; health insurance, vision insurance, disability insurance, and life insurance.

How to Increase your Travel Nurse Pay

Travel nurses can increase their pay, which doesn’t require negotiations. American Mobile recruiter, Levi L., shared, “If you want to maximize how much you make, there are different strategies such as finding low housing cost so that you can take home more money, take housing we provide, or take the housing subsidy. Also, take a look at tax rates. Some states don’t have a state income tax, while in California, nurses receive time and a half (overtime pay) if they work over eight hours.

Another option would be to consider various certifications. For example, some ER nurse positions pay more for nurses who have a TNCC certification.”

“The best option is to tell your recruiter your financial or compensation goals. While you can easily find the highest wages using AMN Passport, you don’t always want to base your final decision on the wage to meet your compensation goals.

That’s what the recruiter is here for – to maximize your compensation and optimize your experience.”

Are you looking for your next travel nurse assignment? Click here to view our job board. Do you need housing for an upcoming assignment? Click here to search our housing page.

If you are a new traveler or looking into becoming a Travel Nurse:

Travel Nurse Guide: Step by Step

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