Jan 13, 2023
10 Tips for First-Time Travelers
Are you thinking about traveling for the first time? There’s a lot to know and a lot to do when as a healthcare traveler. These ten tips for first-time travelers will help you prepare for your first assignment.
- Get organized. Make sure you have copies of all of your licenses, certifications, and an updated resume. Many jobs also require documentation of vaccines. You can upload and save all your documents in the Aequor Talent Portal (website and mobile app).
- Consider state licensing. If you are an allied worker, research what your specialty requires to work in other states. Nurses may want to consider getting a compact license to easily work in 40 states and territories that are members of the Nurse Licensure Compact (NLC). Use our State Licensing Map for detailed licensure information, links and resources.
- Go somewhere familiar for your first assignment. You may want to consider going to a location where you have friends or family nearby, or a city where you have lived in before. Healthcare traveling throws enough new and challenging experiences at you that newbies might better adapt to this new lifestyle if starting in an area you’re already comfortable with.
- Talk with experienced travelers. Other healthcare travelers in your field have a wealth of knowledge to offer, and they’re typically eager to share it. Facebook groups are an easy way to connect with other travelers and ask questions about their traveling experiences. The Aequor Travel Journal is also a great place to read Aequor traveler stories. Also, your recruiter might know of others in your area and introduce you to some fellow members of the Aequor Family.
- Be flexible. The more flexible you are with location, schedule, facility and pay, the more jobs will be available to you. As you become a more seasoned traveler and gain experience in your specialty, you can be pickier with the assignments you want.
- Decide on housing and transportation. Look into the area around your assignment facility and decide if you would rather rent an apartment, a room in a house, or bunk in an extended-stay hotel. The urban or suburban setting of your facility may affect your decision to bring your car or fly to your destination. Read our article, The Inside Scoop on Housing from a Veteran Traveler’s Perspective, for some great advice on housing.
- Pack lightly. Most assignments are 13 weeks. Think about what necessities you use daily, and what you’re willing to leave behind. Some things, like toiletries, may be easier to purchase when you get to your destination. While it may be important to bring a few items of comfort from home, the less you bring, the less you will have to transport, unpack and then repack and transport to your next assignment.
- Prepare your pets. Make sure your pets are up to date on yearly exams and any vaccines they may need prior to traveling. Find a vet near your assignment, should your fur-babies need any care during your stay. It’s also smart to look into dog walking or pet sitting services for those 10-12-hour days when you’re at work. We have recommended some helpful apps for finding services for your pets in our article, Useful Apps for Travel Nurses & Allied Travelers.
- Arrive early. Plan on arriving a day or two before your orientation starts. You can use the extra time to check out the shops, restaurants and other services you plan on using in your new neighborhood. Also use this time to figure out the best route to work, how long your commute will take, and where you will park, which is an important safety consideration.
- Keep in contact with your recruiter. Even after you sign your contract, your recruiter is there to help you with any questions or issues that may arise before or during your assignment. Remember that Aequor has a team of advocates and supporters that work for you!
You’ll be a veteran traveler before you know it, and then you’ll be sharing your tips for first-time travelers. Aequor has many exciting travel jobs for nurses and allied health workers. To browse our jobs and connect with a recruiter, visit the Aequor Talent Portal.
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