Travel nursing with your spouse or significant other is probably the easiest of all the traveling with a family scenarios. You don’t have to worry about taking care of, educating or keeping kids out of trouble. The biggest challenges that I have seen out there is how to deal with your spouse or significant other’s career and free time. When they are still in the prime of their working life keeping them busy and adding to the household income while on the road can be the difficult part.
Retired spouse or significant other of a travel nurse
If your spouse or significant other is retired then the challenge is greatly reduced. Most people have thought about what they will do when they are retired (like travel) so now is the time for your spouse or significant other to look into those interests and hobbies that have always been on hold. This is also a great opportunity to travel in locations close to the kids and grandkids. If they are retired and bringing in extra income is not a huge priority then a retired spouse or significant other is a great position to take care of the issues like taxes, finances, your house back in your hometown and you (hey you’re the one still working so make they sure take care of everything at home so you can relax).
Spouse or significant other who is also a travel nurse
This is the easiest situation, but does present some of its own challenges as far as finding assignments in the same city if not same hospital at the same time. This will require a great recruiter and travel nursing company and a lot of pre-planning on your part. Another challenge of this is to make sure that you try to get your schedules as closely synched as possible so you don’t miss out on the chance to enjoy your travel location together. You don’t just want to transfer a life where you don’t see each other to a new locale; you want to enjoy all the benefits of a travel nursing job. So make sure you work with your recruiter and nurse manager to see how often you can work the same schedules or at least coordinate one or two days off together a week. And hopefully you can avoid a situation where one of you is working the night shift and the other the day.
Another option here is to take turns working the travel nursing jobs. Instead of you both working during one 13 week stretch you could alternate. And another option is to both work a ton for 2-3 assignments a year and have 3 months off together. By then you should have seen enough of each other enough that going back to work sounds like a vacation.
[pullquote]The biggest challenges that I have seen out there is how to deal with your spouse or significant other’s career and free time.[/pullquote]
Non traveler spouse or significant other of a travel nurse
The challenges of having a spouse or significant other who is not retired or a traveler while you are a travel nurse is really keeping them busy and productive away from home. If you have already made the decision for them to leave their job or career behind while you use travel nursing to make extra money and see the country then hopefully the two of you have thought through what they will do while you are at work. But if you haven’t or you have realized that you need or want them to supplement the household income then are some cool job options for spouse or significant others of travel nurses.
Some other options are working with a temporary staffing agency. Many industries rely on staffing agencies just like nursing does so be sure to check out that option. It is a great way for them to gain new skills and broaden their career network while you travel. Here are some industries that need temporary contract staff:
- Admin and Secretarial
- Advertising and PR
- Agriculture Fishing and Forestry
- Building and Construction
- Call Centre and Customer Service
- Defense and Military
- Design and Creative
- Education and Training
- Financial Services
- Health and Safety
- Hospitality and Catering
- Human Resources and Personnel
- Leisure and Sport
- Logistics Distribution and Supply Chain
- Manufacturing and Production
- Medical and Nursing
- New Media and Internet
- Not for Profit and Charities
- Property and Housing
- Public Sector and Government
- Purchasing and Procurement
- Recruitment Consultancy
- Science and Research
- Senior Appointments
- Social Care
- Transport and Rail
- Travel and Tourism
Another option for them is to go back to college online. There are tons of great online university degree programs all you need is an Internet connection, time and motivation. Just search for online colleges and you will find tons of resources.
A few other rewarding options I have seen spouse or significant others of travel nurses take:
- Substitute teaching
Links for spouse or significant others of travel nurses
- Does your spouse or significant other/SO travel with you? AllNurses.com Forum discussion
- Adventures in Travel Nursing
- Travel Nurse: Have Husband, Will Travel
- Food, Fitness, & Fun in All 50 States: A Travel Nursing Survival Guide Blog: Our Journey, Advice, & Dieting Tips from the Road
- Fast Facts for the Travel Nurse: Travel Nursing in a Nutshell