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By January 4, 2013 0 Comments

Rapid Response Doesn’t Have to Mean Panicked Packing


travel nurse moving into housingRapid Response travel nursing can mean that you are moving with very little notice and a lot of stress.  You look around your apartment and suddenly wish you didn’t have all seven Harry Potters (books and DVDs) and  didn’t like shoes quite so much.  I know- I’ve been there. Of course, I’m pretty sure I can blame my own procrastination for the few times in my life that I’ve had to move in a rush!  Over the years, I’ve collected a few tips for getting out quick:

Back Off the Boxes: One idea I found helpful in a pinch is packing stuff into pillowcases.  As absurd and chaotic as it may sound, pillowcases actually make a simple, affordable, and organized may to move belongings.  By investing in a variety of colored pillowcases, you create a coded packing system without ever labeling anything.  All your toiletries are packed in the blue pillowcases, all your scrubs are stuffed in the red ones, all your shoes go in the greens ones, and so on.  The best part is that you can easily store pillowcases in the back of a closet and reuse them ( and your color code system) for future moves, unlike those cardboard boxes!

Isolate the Essentials: Preparing an overnight bag of just the things you need for your first few days is a great way to smooth your transition to your new location. Especially if you start work the day soon after you arrive, there is no frantic searching for the toothpaste or your lucky badge reel. I also always pack my coffee in there so I don’t go without in the morning!  You can leave the rest of the not-so-urgent unpacking to a day off and instead enjoy your new place and relax a little.

Newspaper Not Required: For picture frames, dishes and other breakable items, use clothing you are packing anyway to wrap and protect them.   If you don’t have the Sunday Times lying around, roll a vase into your pant legs and a plate into a sweater.  In fact, scrubs make great packing material and you don’t take up space with useless bubble wrap that you throw away anyway!

As a traveling nurse, I’m sure you have come up with loads of other tips (maybe even crazier than pillowcases).  I’d love to hear them!

About the Author:

Eva Dixon is currently the VP of Communications at, a customer-friendly, online store for medical scrubs and nursing nursing uniforms. She is a graduate of the University of Minnesota College of Liberal Arts with a degree in Global Studies and French. She enjoys traveling, free-lance photography and drinking coffee (especially in the morning!).

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