There are many advantages to being a travel nurse or healthcare worker – including the opportunity to explore new places and experience new things.

However, let’s be honest, moving can be a pain. So even if this isn’t your first rodeo, it’s good to understand some best practices for picking up and settling in a new city. Here are some important steps to consider:

Ask questions

The most important part of your move is to know what you’re walking into. Make a list: Either your recruiter, employer, or future property owner will be able to answer all of your questions. When do you start? Is the home/apartment fully furnished? Who’s paying for the move? It never hurts to be prepared.

Decide on Housing

For most travelers, housing is one of the most important pieces of the pay package. It should be one of the first things to understand and you really shouldn’t sign a contract until you know how your housing will be arranged. In a nutshell, housing is available in two options:

  • Agency-placed housing: Your staffing agency arranges housing for you
  • Stipend pay: You receive a stipend and make your own housing arrangements

Some travelers prefer taking agency-provided housing — it’s simple and one less thing to worry about. Others take the stipend and either find their own housing or travel in an RV. One isn’t necessarily better than the other, so talk to an experienced healthcare recruiter to understand what works best for you.

Check out your Location

When it comes to moving to a new location for an assignment, you want to eliminate as many surprises as possible. That includes becoming familiar with the place you’ll be living at for the next few months.

If at all possible, take time to tour your new town in person. Yes, you can find endless amounts of information online, but there’s nothing like visiting and driving through a new area’s neighborhoods to get a feel of the “vibe” of your potential new place to live.

Start Planning Early

It’s always good to book travel plans in advance and consider relocation expenses. Otherwise, you may find yourself with options that put a serious dent in the bank account – or worse, no options at all. Here’s a good pre-moving checklist:

  • Moving truck or trailer
  • Boxes
  • Self-storage unit
  • Moving company or professional mover
  • Plane tickets

Have a Travel Emergency Fund

Consider having an emergency fund that includes at least three to six months’ worth of living expenses. This step is beneficial because you may have unexpected costs like medical bills, a car accident, or a furniture purchase that isn’t supported by your employer or agency. You may not need it but having some extra cash on hand is never a bad thing.

Don’t Forget your Important Documents

When relocating, the most common document people think of bringing is their driver’s license. This is clearly something to remember to include – but be sure to have copies of your license and all professional certifications printed or accessible in digital form. You may or may not need all of them, but it’s better to be safe than sorry.


As a leading family- and woman-owned healthcare employment agency, SpotOn Recruiting is experienced in helping physicians, nurse practitioners and physician assistants find great jobs nationwide. If you’re a health professional looking to make your next career move, visit our website and see how our experienced team can help you meet your goals!  


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