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Packing and preparing for your travel nursing assignment

Written by Chelsea Idzior on Tuesday, October 22, 2013 Posted in Travel Nurse Tips

When you accept a position in travel nursing, you'll want to be prepared for all situations. This includes packing important documents and paperwork, as well as the right clothing, electronics, housewares and anything else you'll need during your stay.

Important paperwork

First and foremost, you'll want to gather important documentation to bring with you on your assignment. Keep printed copies, as well as electronic files on a “jump” drive or stored digitally in the cloud. This includes:

  • Your contract.
  • Your resume (listing your college degree, experience, work history and skills).
  • Your nursing license and any certifications (i.e., CPR or ACLS).
  • Personal identification, such as your driver's license or Social Security card.
  • Your health insurance card.
  • Emergency contact information.
  • Medical records required for placement (including drug screen results, vaccination records or your annual physical).
  • Tax forms (both state and federal).
  • Any paperwork from your staffing agency or your new facility, such as a handbook, policies and procedures list, their contact information or orientation information.

Directions

Whether you drive to your placement or take a plane, you'll need directions to get to your new facility and housing. Your recruiter will be able to supply this information. You may also want to consider bringing a GPS device to help you navigate your new city. Directions are always available through online map sites, too.

Household items and electronics

Check with your recruiter to determine what's available at your housing location and what you'll need to bring. If you're flying to your new travel-nursing job, you'll want to pack strategically to cut down on luggage. Your cell phone probably has an alarm function and can double as an alarm clock. Most laptops will allow you to watch movies or online TV shows if your housing facility doesn't provide a television.

Find out if you'll need to bring sheets, towels or dishes. Pack just one set of linens and dish service only for yourself; rely on the Laundromat and frequent dish washing. To cut down on what you'll need to pack, plan to purchase personal care items, such as shampoo, once you arrive at your destination. Don't forget to bring any medications you may need.

Clothing and footwear

Bring clothing for different types of weather, depending on where you've been placed. Choose items that can be mixed and matched together so you can pack less. Don't forget to bring essentials such as:

  • Appropriate outwear.
  • Casual clothing and a few dressy items.
  • Your scrubs or uniform.
  • A few pairs of shoes: one casual, one dressy, sneakers and your required work footwear.

Allow yourself adequate time to pack and jot down a list so you can be sure you haven't forgotten anything. Once you're packed and prepared, you will be ready for almost any situation that comes your way.

Looking for a position as a travel nurse? Health Providers Choice will work with you for a smooth transition into your travel-nursing placement. Contact a recruiter today to learn more!