Thriving On Your Travel Nursing Contract Without A Car

Thriving On Your Travel Nursing Contract Without A Car

By Anna Lamberson, Travel RN

There can be so many things to consider when it’s time to head off to your next travel contract location that you found on Wanderly. Luckily you have a lot of options at your disposal. Read about all of the highest paying travel nursing contracts right now here. On your next travel nursing assignment, the most popular option is to drive your own vehicle, but you can get creative with how you decide to reach your next location as well as how you get around the area when you arrive.

So why would anyone not want to bring their vehicle with them?

Often it can be because the traveler wishes not to drive a significant distance to their next travel nursing assignment. Safety can be a concern when driving for long periods of time through unfamiliar regions. Unpredictable weather or car troubles can be a major safety risk, especially when you consider that a lot of us travel by ourselves. Priority is of course your own safety so if this is a concern, listen to that voice, because we will touch base on how to get around without your vehicle. If you are deciding to drive you should absolutely plan ahead to ensure your car is capable of driving in the conditions you are going to expect along the way. Check weather patterns and ensure that your primary vehicle safety components are up to date. A great bonus to have is a roadside assistance plan to have in your back pocket should you need it.

No Parking Concers When Travel Nursing Without A Car

Another reason not to drive is it can be taxing and expensive to secure a place to park it. While having a car with you Is convenient, there are a lot of alternatives to travel around your new location. Most of them actually end up being a great way to explore your new temporary home and can save you some of that travel nurse pay you work so hard for.

As you have figured out by now, traveling as a health care professional is full of adapting and maintaining flexibility. These are key to being successful professionally, but also to maximize the unique opportunities you are presented with during this time in your life. So, if the concerns we outlined above are weighing heavy on your mind, this can be where alternative travel to your next contract can be a great option. Flying is most common, but you can also take a train or a bus. Now, if you are a routine driver of your personal vehicle you may experience some adjustments once you arrive, but there are so many transit options to utilize once you have settled in.

Taking an assignment in a large city such as NYC is a great location to fly to, because big cities have optimal public transit. This includes trains, buses, cabs or subways. Additionally these cities tend to be very walk-able and have tons of rentable devices like scooters, bicycles or even cars.

A concern with flying is wondering how to pack everything.

What I find is that as travelers we are shockingly good at packing light and optimizing space. The more travel nursing contracts you take, the better you will get at identifying your essentials. You will learn how to fit them in to the vessels you have allocated for traveling. A side note on optimizing your packing is to make sure you secure a housing option that comes furnished. Ensure you don’t have to travel with basic kitchen and home appliances. Search for furnished housing here. Having these necessities saves you a lot of room and keeps you from having to buy them on arrival.

So pack up one or two bags of luggage (or check a bag on the plane) and if you find you still have items you’d like to take with you on your assignment there are a variety of options to get them to you. Set up a mailbox at a shipping company – this is my biggest recommendation for this problem! I love this solution, because you can send your belongings ahead of time and as a plus you are able to forward your home mail while on assignment to a safe, secure location. You’ll never have to worry about the hassle of your packages being stolen or having to use someone else’s address for mailing.

So, what are the perks to not having your vehicle with you on assignment anyways?

Firstly is that you get to learn your way around the area without relying on your GPS as much. You’ll get to know street names and interstates, which can be very beneficial. By the end of your travel nursing contract you’ll be privy to a lot of the local spots. You will have a great sense of direction for easy navigation. Think about the excitement you get with simply stumbling upon those unique spots you otherwise wouldn’t have known about. Personally, these have ended up being some of my favorite go-to coffee shops and restaurants. What about the cities with crazy expensive parking fees and the congestion of trying to find a spot? That won’t be your problem either! You’ll be learning to navigate the subway or locate your bus stops and bike rental points. Speaking of, you’ll be making a small effort to support the environment with these options. You are limiting your carbon footprint and potentially improving your own health if you choose an active transport method. Think rental bikes, walking or scooters.

Then the day comes when you want to branch out a little more, so what do you do?

You can easily rent a car for those days where you want to explore a little farther from your assignment. Look at car rental services, but affordable day rental options that utilize drop-off and pick-up parking spots. Both are great options for a day full of errands or even for a weekend getaway. You can bring a friend along with you to soak up a few days of fun and split the rental fees.

Travel safe and get creative with your transportation options as you can now see a lot of the major benefits!