Becoming a healthcare traveler can be an exciting and challenging, career change. However, the unknowns of getting started can be overwhelming. We asked some of our tenured travelers what they’ve learned throughout the years as a medical traveler, and asked them to share their tips for making a new traveler’s first assignment a breeze. Here’s what they have to say.
Before you hit the road, here are five tips from our long-term travelers to get you started on your new career path as a healthcare traveler!
Explore the New Surroundings
Once you get your footing at your travel assignment, it is easy to get wrapped up in working but the other half of being a travel healthcare worker is actually traveling! When you have free time after a shift, enjoy a local coffee shop or find a brewery in town. When it’s finally your weekend, take a trip to a neighboring town or explore the surroundings of your new temporary home for the next 13 weeks!
The opportunities are endless when it comes to how you spend your free time so take advantage of getting outside instead of inside your apartment. It never hurts to do a little research on what is going on in that area. Before you arrive, look up upcoming events (hooray for events making a come-back!), farmers markets, or brewery tours. This way you’ll have something to look forward to!
Prep Before You Hit the Road
Before you hit the road, make sure you have your first aid kit packed and your car checked out for any auto problems you could run into while on the road. It’s important to prepare for what could happen and have a back up plan.
Some travelers recommended having back up chargers for their phone, laptop, or gaming devices in case one conveniently stops working halfway through your travel assignment. If you’re renting an apartment or condo, it’s important to know what comes with your living arrangement. Make sure to pack your favorite set of sheets for your bed or your air fryer for the kitchen if those are necessities you can’t live without for the next 3 months. It’s all about being comfortable in your home away from home.
There is no such thing as a stupid question. Whether just starting orientation or, halfway through your assignment, don’t be afraid to ask questions about protocol or ask for recommendations from a local.
It’s better to be informed and well-versed on the facility you’re working in and the town you’re staying in than to stay a visitor. Put together a list of questions to ask when you first arrive at a facility. Your questions might include:
- What paperwork do I need to complete?
- Where are the restrooms on this floor?
- Who are my go-to resources?
- Are there any unique protocols for your facility?
- Where can I find the best burger in town?
- Where’s the nearest 24-hour grocery store?
Attitude Makes a Difference
Joining a new team and learning the ropes at a new facility can be stressful and not everything is going to be perfect from day one. It’s best to walk into each travel opportunity with an open mind, a positive attitude and a smile to get started on the right foot. The rest will fall into place as the first day becomes the first week and you become a part of the team. From your living situation to the day-today tasks, it is all temporary, so make the most of it!
Remember, you’re calling the shots on where you go for your travel assignment. Go and explore the region and push yourself outside of your comfort zone. That could look different for each traveler; making new friends in town at trivia night or just learning more about the history of the city you’re calling home can enrich your experience and remind you why you chose to travel in the first place.
What tips do you have for new travelers? Share them with us on social media using #LRSNewTravelerTips