How Much Do Travel Nurses Make?

How Much Do Travel Nurses Make – Overview

Nursing is always in demand field for students who aim to serve people with their profession. It is a profession that is completely different from others. Here, you’ll get a chance to serve the people around you, and in return, you can earn your bread. Isn’t it great?

If you have ever considered pursuing nursing as a career, you must look for a travel nurse option. But how much do travel nurses make? Let’s find out!

What Does Travel Nurse Mean

A travel nurse is a skilled professional who chooses to work in high-need areas. They jump from one place to another to serve their skills and help those in need with their profession.

They can work in clinics, hospitals, home care facilities, and other places to provide high-quality care to patients. They work within the country and fly to different places as per their requirements. They work as independent professionals.

In summary, travel nurses earn more than their counterparts. The need for travel nurses drastically increased during the pandemic, which has boosted the industry and is still growing rapidly.

Like every other profession, people always look for the earning side of their profession. To become a travel nurse, one must research the salary and other aspects of the profession. Let’s find out how much travel nurses make.

How much do Travel Nurses Make

How Much Do Travel Nurses Make

Let’s Find Out How Much Do Travel Nurses Make

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, travel nurses earn $2,181 weekly. This is more than registered nurses make in a week, showing that travel nurses make more than registered nurses and other nursing professionals. If we talk about the average earnings of travel nurses, they earn over $81,220 annually.

The average salary of travel nurses is influenced by various factors, including but not limited to specialty, geographic location, facility demand, shift type (such as night shifts or weekend shifts), and the specific terms of their contract with travel nursing agencies. Higher-demand specialties and locations with critical staffing needs tend to offer higher compensation rates. Before we conclude, we must check out the factors affecting the salary of travel nurses.

Travel nurses earn differently depending on their skills, shift timing, and many other factors. Let’s discuss which factors could affect their pay packages.

1. Specialty

The specialty of the travel nurse plays a crucial role in deciding how much they earn. The pay package for each specialty type is different and is also based on the destination city and shift time.

If we talk about the highest-paying specialties for travel nurses, we have figured out the five best specialties for them, which can earn them a high pay package.

  1. Pediatrics Vascular Access
  2. Operating Room
  3. Labor and Delivery
  4. NICU
  5. Pediatric ICU

2. Shift Type

Shift Type also plays a vital role in deciding the pay package for travel nurses. If you choose night shifts or shifts during the weekends, you’ll earn more than other shifts.

3. Classification of Employment

The compensation levels for staff, nurses, and caretakers differ for each employment type. With travel nurses, you can choose your workspace according to your needs. You don’t have to bind yourself to a specific place, as you must go out and serve people in need.

4. Facility Need

Different facilities pay differently to travel nurses. They will earn more than others if they choose to work in a super multi-specialty hospital. Even if they work in the same city, the working facilities could also affect the pay package for travel nurses. However, such facilities require special skills and are not ideal for all types of travel nurses.

Benefits Associated with Travel Nurses

Travel Nurses should focus more on other benefits than the hourly rates. Here are some additional benefits associated with travel nurses.

Housing Support

Most travel nurses get free accommodation from the agency. The agency makes such contracts before signing them for a particular task. They might even get a stipend for the same or get direct accommodation from the agency. Some agencies provide options to them to choose the right option.

Travel Reimbursements

Many assignments reimburse travel nurses. Travel nurses get reimbursements from and to places they travel to serve their skills and help people in need. Travel nurses also get flight reimbursement, which can even expand their travel needs.

Licensing Reimbursements

Travel nurses can easily get a license to work in different states through an agency. Since their profession is widespread nationwide, they can easily obtain multi-state licensing.


Travel nurses can also earn extra money by working extra hours, i.e., overtime. They can work extra hours beyond the contracted working hours as per their capacity.

These are some of the benefits associated with this profession. Travel nurses live happily as they get chances to explore different places and new environments with each assignment they get from the agency.

Highest Paying States for Registered Nurses in the US

The pay for travel nurses can vary significantly by state due to cost of living adjustments and varying demand for healthcare professionals. Some of the highest-paying states for travel nurses reflect the broader trend for registered nurses, but often at elevated rates due to the nature of travel nursing, including California, Hawaii, Oregon, the District of Columbia, and Alaska. While these states offer higher compensation, travel nurses must consider the cost of living and personal preferences for work location.

Travel nursing assignments in these areas can provide lucrative opportunities, but the overall benefits package, including housing and living expenses, should also be considered.

Now, after identifying the top five states that pay registered nurses the highest pay package, let’s find out how much they earn in different cities in the US.

City NameWeekly PayAnnual Salary
San Jose, CA$2,393$124,486
Jackson, WY$2,387$124,160
Oakland, CA$2,369$123,231
Vallejo, CA$2,324$120,898
Hayward, CA$2,318$120,579
Seattle, WA$2,316$120,473
Truckee, CA$2,312$135,490
Santa Barbara, CA$2,300$119,641
Barnstable Town, Ma$2,299$119,554
Sunnywale, CA$2,292$119,190

Travel nursing is an evergreen profession, and its need is increasing rapidly. Travel nurses earn more than registered nurses and get stipends, housing support, and many other benefits that normal nurses can’t get.

If you want to become a nurse, travel nursing is the right field for you. Explore the details in the above blog to decide whether travel nursing is a good career choice!

See Also

What is Forensic Nursing

Online DNP Programs

Best Nursing Schools in the US

Medication Aide Certification

Current Version
March 8, 2024
Updated By
Tim Bevelacqua, MN, RN
July 8, 2023
Written By
Shubham Grover

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