By January 6, 2010 0 Comments

Ask a Travel Nurse: How do I get everything done before I leave for my travel nursing job?


Last week we talked about preparing for the start of a new assignment. Despite swearing that I would never follow in my mother’s footsteps of being a “list” person, I must say that a good “to-do” list can be very helpful in keeping track of all the things that need to be accomplished when embarking on a travel assignment.

Here is a list that I often use. It starts after I have signed the contract and my housing has been assigned. If you like, cut and paste this into your own list and then add or subtract items to make it your own.


____Call the apartment complex and confirm move in date and unit number (I have had a few occasions where the unit number my travel agency gave me was not the same unit that the apartment complex had reserved for me)

Assignment address________________________________________________

____Call and arrange cable and Internet service for new address______

Cable company____________________Phone number___________________

____Phone service at new address    Phone company________________

Number to phone company____________ My new number____________

____Prep the auto for travel_____Oil change?_______Tires okay?_____Brakes okay?____Any tune-ups (transmission fluids, radiator flush, etc)

____All devices in auto?____GPS____cell phone____road atlas

____flashlight____AAA card____title/registration____insurance cards

____extra clothes and blankets for winter travel____bottled water for emergencies

____Map and print out route to assignment (may use a TripTik if an AAA member)

____Pack for assignment: ____clothes____ household items____laptop____dishes

____TV___DVD player

____Documents:____contract____BLS/ACLS cards____nursing license____any documents from facility (orientation schedule, directions to hospital, etc)

Hospital address__________________________________________________

Extra items list: (for anything unique to your assignment, ex: skis for Colorado assignment)

1)____________________ 2)____________________ 3)____________________

About the Author:

Hello everyone. I’m a travel nurse originally from Ohio who graduated in 1993 from Mount Carmel School of Nursing in Columbus. I completed a critical care fellowship at Riverside Methodist Hospital in 1994 and started traveling in that specialty a year later. My first travel assignment was in Maui and since that time I have completed close to 40 different contracts in various states with multiple travel companies. I am the author of Travel Nurse’s Bible (A Guide to Everything on Travel Nursing), in addition to my writings here and in the pages of Travel Nursing publications such as Healthcare Traveler Magazine and American Nurse Today. I am presently on assignment in Phoenix, AZ and travel anywhere from six to eleven months of the year.

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