15 Tips To Land The Best Local Travel Nursing Jobs – 2023

Written By: Darby Faubion, RN, BSN, MBA

Are you a registered nurse interested in new opportunities? Do you enjoy meeting new people and learning new things? Have you thought about travel nursing but worry about being too far from home? If so, a local travel nursing job could be a great way to start! Maybe you thought of becoming a local travel nurse but wonder, “Can someone tell me how to land the best local travel nursing jobs?”

If that sounds familiar, you are in the right place. In this article, I am going to share 15 tips to land the best local travel nursing jobs in 2023. I will give you insight into the requirements, advantages, and disadvantages of local travel nursing and things to consider before taking on an assignment. When you finish reading, you will have a better understanding of local travel nursing and enough information to decide if local travel nursing is something you wish to pursue.



Local travel nursing is a type of nursing job that allows you to work short-term travel jobs within your hometown or locations nearby. Healthcare facilities that are short-staffed pay local nurses to travel to their facilities to help meet appropriate nurse-patient ratios and promote patient care. As a local travel nurse, you get all the benefits of traditional travel nurses but also have the benefit of not having to travel to other states or cross-country.


The difference between a local travel nurse and a standard travel nurse is not in the title or job description. Instead, it is a matter of contract terms regarding the distance you travel for work. Healthcare facilities impose a rule stating the maximum distance a travel nurse may live from their premises. If you live within the boundaries of the distance rule, you can be a local travel nurse. Nurses living outside that distance are considered standard travel nurses.


The average local travel nursing job is 13 weeks. However, you may find opportunities for contracts that are as short as a few weeks or as long as six months. Additionally, when healthcare facilities have a continued need for nursing staff, they may offer you the chance to extend your contract for a longer period.


Finding local travel nursing jobs is usually easy. You may need to apply for several assignments and may not get your first choice of jobs, especially if you are just starting out. However, if you are willing to negotiate and take available assignments, you should be able to find a local travel nursing job fairly easily and quickly.


Each facility or healthcare organization has its own criteria for hiring local travel nurses. Although the requirements may vary from one facility to another, the minimum requirements are similar and are as follows.

REQUIREMENT #1: Earn an Associate or Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing

The first step in becoming a local travel nurse is to earn a nursing degree. You may choose to earn an associate degree in nursing or a bachelor’s degree, depending on the type of nursing and roles you wish to pursue.

REQUIREMENT #2: Apply for Licensure to the Nursing Regulatory Board

Before you can take the licensing exam, you must apply to the Nursing Regulatory Board in your state of practice for licensure/registration. Once your eligibility is confirmed, you will receive an authorization to test, and you may schedule your licensing exam.

REQUIREMENT #3: Become a Licensed RN

After earning your nursing degree, the next requirement to become a local travel nurse is to become licensed. Graduates of associate and bachelor’s degree nursing programs must take the NCLEX-RN to earn a license. You must keep your license current and have no restrictions to qualify for travel nursing jobs.

REQUIREMENT #4: Get Some Work Experience

To be a local travel nurse, you need at least one year of work experience as a registered nurse. As you search for jobs, be sure to verify the amount and type of work experience you need for each contract because some jobs require more than a year of experience or specialty certification local travel nursing job.

REQUIREMENT #5: Keep Your BLS and Other Certifications Up to Date

As with all nursing jobs, you must have a current BLS, ACLS, and/or PALS certification to work in local travel nursing. Make sure you keep your certifications current and copies of any cards or paperwork readily available.


If you are considering local travel nursing, weighing the pros and cons is a good way to decide if it is the right path for you. The following list reflects some of the top pros of becoming a local travel nurse.

PRO #1: You can work in various settings without traveling too far from home.

One of the biggest advantages of local travel nursing is that you can have diversity in the types of settings where you work and the roles you fill without having to travel across the country. Most local travel nursing jobs are from 50 to 200 miles from your home region. So, even if you decide to spend a night or two away from home, you do not necessarily have to stay away for weeks or months at a time. This benefit is especially important to nurses who have family or home obligations.

PRO #2: The income potential is awesome!

Local travel nurses earn between $97,510 and $180,000 per year, depending on their location. In addition to excellent pay, many travel nursing agencies offer insurance and other benefits, which could increase your total compensation significantly.

PRO #3: You can enjoy flexible scheduling based on your terms.

Another great advantage of local travel nursing jobs is that you have the flexibility of scheduling work based on your terms. Unlike traditional nursing jobs that typically have set schedules, travel nursing gives you the option of accepting or declining a contract. Therefore, if you have plans like a vacation or wedding and do not want to work at a specific time, you can choose contracts that align with your other engagements or responsibilities without the risk of losing your job.

PRO #4: You can expand your professional network.

Local travel nurses work in various settings and meet new people with each new contract, which means you can expand your professional network quickly. Having a large professional network means you have the support of colleagues who share the same passion for nursing and patient care as you. Also, your network can be a great resource when it comes to learning about new jobs or learning opportunities!

PRO #5: You can have the benefits of travel nursing without the expense of long-distance travel nursing.

When you work as a travel nurse in non-local jobs, you will be given a housing stipend or have housing paid for. However, other expenses are typically your responsibility. Local travel nursing jobs offer the benefit of earning a good income and being reimbursed for travel expenses without having to pay other expenses related to long-distance travel. What that means for you is that you can keep more money in your pocket at the end of the day!

PRO #6: You can gain new skills and boost your resume.

Another awesome thing about local travel nursing is you can learn new skills, which could benefit you later in your career. You will have opportunities to learn from other nurses in diverse settings and add new skills and abilities to your resume. In doing so, you can become a more favorable candidate for other jobs or promotions that require diverse experience and skills.


Although there are many benefits to local travel nursing, there are also a few disadvantages to consider. If you know the pros and cons, you can weigh them against one another and decide if local travel nursing is the right option for you. The following are three main disadvantages of local travel nursing.

CON #1: Contracts can get canceled at the last minute.

One of the most frustrating things about travel nursing is that healthcare facilities may cancel a contract, sometimes at what seems like the last minute, which can leave you wondering where to work next. Most of the time, contracts are canceled because of a decrease in patient census, which leaves facilities scrambling to cut costs where they can. Unfortunately, for local travel nurses, that can mean the cancellation of a contract.

CON #2: Your pay and benefits can vary from one job to the next.

Although local travel nursing jobs pay well, each healthcare facility determines the rate it pays to travel nurses. If you work at various facilities, you may find that your pay rate changes from job to job. While this can be a bit unnerving, if you plan well and manage your finances responsibly, you should be able to create a budget that works despite that variation in pay.

CON #3: Being in unfamiliar settings can be overwhelming.

As nurses, we understand that no two days are alike. However, working in traditional roles with a regular job, we can at least become familiar with our surroundings and coworkers. Local travel nurses do not always have the luxury. Depending on the length of your contract, you may be at the end of a job by the time you know your way around a facility or get to know the people you work with. The constant changes in work settings are something that many nurses consider a disadvantage when it comes to local travel nursing.


(The following are the 15 tips to land the best local travel nursing jobs in 2023.)

TIP #1: Ask About Float Nurse Opportunities at Your Current Job

About the Tip:

Local travel nursing jobs require you to be comfortable working in various settings. What better way to broaden your skills and prepare to begin travel nursing than to work as a float nurse at your current place of employment?

Why This Tip is Important:

Having diverse experiences and skills makes you stand out as a good candidate to local travel nursing agencies. If you take advantage of extra shifts and float positions where you currently work, you can learn about the roles and responsibilities of nurses in different departments and develop and hone new skills and abilities. Not to mention, you will have the added benefit of feeling more at ease because you are learning at a place where you already have friends and know your way around!

TIP #2: Get Certified in One or More Specialties

About the Tip:

Although not all nursing jobs require you to have a specialty certification, you can improve your chances of getting better-paying local travel nursing jobs if you are certified. You can get certified to care for a specific patient population, such as pediatric or geriatric patients, or you can specialize in a particular type of care, like surgery, cardiology, or oncology.

Why This Tip is Important:

Being certified in a nursing specialty demonstrates your professional knowledge and skills. Whether you choose one specialty or pursue certification in multiple specialties, the more you know, the more viable you become as a good candidate for travel nursing opportunities.

TIP #3: Learn About Different Travel Nurse Agencies

About the Tip:

Not all travel nurse agencies are the same, which means researching your options is crucial. You owe it to yourself to research different agencies and find ones that align with your values and goals.

Why This Tip is Important:

When you research travel nurse agencies, consider looking at their websites for reviews from current or previous travel nurses. Look for the agency's social media pages and try to find other reviews, such as on Google searches. Ask questions about how well recruiters communicate with nurses, what the turnaround time is for receiving correspondence, which benefits are offered, and what the agency does to help you find a new placement if a facility cancels a contract.

TIP #4: Network with Other Travel Nurses

About the Tip:

If you have been a nurse or around nursing any length of time, you have probably noticed how nurses look out for one another. It is common for nurses in one facility to hear about job openings and opportunities in other healthcare facilities or within the community and to share that information with one another.

Why This Tip is Important:

If you take the time to network with other travel nurses, you can develop friendships and connections that could lead to some great job opportunities. Other travel nurses may know of pending job postings or hear of another nurse who could not complete or did not show up for a local travel nursing job. When they know this and share the information with you, it could lead to you finding a new assignment.

TIP #5: Find a Recruiter

About the Tip:

It is absolutely 100% possible to become a local travel nurse without a recruiter. However, travel nurse recruiters specialize in finding jobs that others may not know about.

Why This Tip is Important:

Partnering with a recruiter can make your job as a travel nurse easier. Your recruiter is responsible for finding local travel nursing jobs and helping negotiate contracts that work for you. If you are new to travel nursing, you may find having a recruiter to work with makes finding and securing assignments and contracts easier.

TIP #6: Keep Your Resume Up to Date

About the Tip:

Your resume should give a written account of your work experience and any skills or abilities you have. You should include jobs beginning with the most recent, names and contact information of your supervisor, and a list of certifications or other credentials.

Why This Tip is Important:

Keeping your resume up to date is a great way to keep a running record of your professional accomplishments. Each time you acquire a new skill or certification or begin a new job, you should add it to your resume. If you are asked to fill out a pre-employment application, you can use your resume as a guide to make sure you do not leave out information and then attach a copy to the application to give employers a more detailed account of your work and professional experiences.

TIP #7: Make Sure Your Medical Records Are Current

About the Tip:

Depending on the type of local travel nursing job you get, you may be required to pass a health exam to demonstrate you can handle the physical demands of the job. Also, you will be required to show proof that you are current with your immunizations.

Why This Tip is Important:

If you keep your immunizations current and have a copy of a recent physical exam, this could prevent delays in onboarding for a new contract. You should have a physical exam annually and discuss which immunizations you need or any boosters that are due with your physician. This is an important step because most healthcare facilities will not hire nurses who are not immunized.

TIP #8: Get Letters of Professional Recommendation

About the Tip:

When you apply for any job, you must provide references. Instead of trying to think of people to list on your application at the last minute, you should think of three or four professionals who can write an employment recommendation for you. If you want to become a local travel nurse, consider asking current or previous nursing supervisors, employers, or physicians with whom you have worked.

Why This Tip is Important:

When I interviewed nurses, I always enjoyed the fact that some nurses took the time to get letters of recommendation to submit with their applications. Letters of professional recommendation add a little something extra to an application package. People who have worked with you in a professional capacity are some of the best resources to speak of your abilities and skills and what you can offer as a nurse.

TIP #9: Create a Travel Nurse Portfolio

About the Tip:

A travel nurse portfolio is what you create to give a visual demonstration of your nursing skills and experiences. You should include things in your portfolio that document your professional and academic experiences, volunteer work, and any other pertinent information related to your skills and abilities.

Why This Tip is Important:

Even if you have a local travel nursing job near your home, chances are you do not know everyone in the setting where you will work. Having a travel nurse portfolio allows you to keep a thorough record documenting your experiences. As you develop new skills or gain more experience, you can add information to your portfolio. Copies of your resume, nursing license, certifications, and your curriculum vitae are a few examples of things you should keep in your portfolio.

TIP #10: Tend to the “Small Things” Now

About the Tip:

One of the benefits of local travel nursing jobs is that you do not have to travel long distances for work like traditional travel nursing jobs. Depending on how far you travel for your assignment or the hours you work, you may need to take steps to handle small details related to home and personal responsibilities beforehand.

Why This Tip is Important:

Handling small things like having the post office hold your mail, making arrangements for your pets, or setting up automatic payments for your monthly bills can relieve a lot of stress while you are traveling for work. The more things you cross off your “to-do” list, the more time you can focus on your job and caring for yourself, which is a win for everyone.

TIP #11: Get Ready for Your Interview

About the Tip:

As you prepare to transition your role or add local travel nursing to your list of accomplishments, the first step is to get a contract. If you prepare for your interview beforehand, you can increase your chances of landing a good travel nursing job.

Why This Tip is Important:

Like supervisors and hiring managers in any healthcare facility, travel nurse agencies, recruiters, and healthcare organizations want to ensure they employ the right people for their open jobs. When you take the time to review travel nurse interview questions and practice answering them, you will be more relaxed and confident in your interview. Because the roles are varied and require facing and overcoming challenges, confidence is one of the main characteristics employers look for when hiring travel nurses.

TIP #12: Ask Lots of Questions

About the Tip:

As you begin your journey to becoming a local travel nurse, it is important to ask questions... LOTS of questions. For starters, in addition to knowing your pay rate, you need to know if you will receive other benefits, what happens if a contract is canceled, and who your person of contact is throughout your contract.

Why This Tip is Important:

It is important to ask questions so you know what to expect in a local travel nurse job and what is expected from you. Asking questions before committing to a contract can give you peace of mind and help you feel more prepared for work.

TIP #13: Think About Getting Nursing Malpractice Insurance

About the Tip:

Many nurses still look at buying malpractice insurance as a controversial subject. Nevertheless, it is something all nurses in clinical practice should consider. Although hospitals and other large healthcare organizations typically carry malpractice policies that cover employees, there is always room for caution, especially for local travel nurses.

Why This Tip is Important:

All nurses hope to avoid accusations of malpractice. However, even the most well-intentioned nurses can make mistakes or overlook crucial steps in care that lead to reports of inappropriate practice. Travel nurses may receive certain benefits and coverage. However, each contract varies. Although carrying malpractice insurance is not necessarily mandatory, you can never go wrong by protecting yourself in case the unthinkable happens.

TIP #14: Keep an Open Mind

About the Tip:

Travel nursing has become a popular trend among nurses in all specialties and with varied experience levels. Because of its popularity, you may be limited by some of your options or feel like you did not get the “perfect” assignment.

Why This Tip is Important:

There is a world of opportunity in local travel nursing jobs for willing nurses. If you do not get the job first apply for, don’t give up. Instead, keep an open mind about other available positions. When you approach travel nursing with an open mind, you can open the doors of possibilities to learning and developing new skills that you may otherwise not experience. In the end, you can boost your resume, which could lead to even better opportunities later.

TIP #15: Take Care of YOU!

About the Tip:

Nursing in any role can be stressful. Although local travel nursing jobs offer some great benefits and opportunities, they are no exception when it comes to job-related stress. It is crucial that you remember to take care of yourself.

Why This Tip is Important:

One thing I always stress to nursing students and licensed nurses alike is the importance of self-care in nursing. If you are physically, mentally, or emotionally tired or stressed, caring for others becomes more challenging. Stress can cause us to have delayed response time in an emergency or cause distractions that could lead to serious consequences for ourselves, our patients, and the facilities where we work. When you make self-care a priority, you can become a more effective nurse and promote better patient, personal, and organizational outcomes.


Although local travel nursing has its advantages, it is worth noting that you will face some challenges along the way. Knowing what lies ahead and preparing for possible frustrations or setbacks can help you deal with challenges as they arise. The following are three major challenges you will face in local travel nursing jobs and how to overcome them.

CHALLENGE #1: You may feel out of place.

What is it:

A big challenge for many local travel nurses is being the "new guy." Some nurses feel out of place as if it is hard to adjust to a new work environment and new people.

How to Overcome:

It is natural to feel a little anxious or out of sorts when you first begin a new local travel nursing job, but you can overcome that with a few steps. I have found that many times staff nurses are not sure what to expect from travel nurses, so someone must break the ice. Even though you are the guest in a new facility, you may need to be the one who initiates conversation with other nurses to try and develop a good rapport. Be confident in who you are as a person and what you bring to the table professionally, and show a willingness to be a team player.

CHALLENGE #2: Every facility has its own policies and procedures.

What is it:

Although some nursing responsibilities are the same no matter where you work, the policies and procedures, who you report to, and what is expected of you may vary from one local travel nursing job to another. Keeping up with changes can feel a bit overwhelming.

How to Overcome:

The easiest way to overcome this challenge is to ask questions. When you sign your contract, find out who the supervisor is at your new job. Make sure you keep an open line of communication with your supervisor and recruiter, and when in doubt, ask questions for clarity.

CHALLENGE #3: You may have to “take what you can get.”

What is it:

Despite the many benefits of becoming a local travel nurse, some nurses feel frustrated because they do not always get the perfect job. The simple fact is that travel nurses are hired to fill a need, which means you are not subject to seniority, and you may end up with a shift or assignment you do not want.

How to Overcome:

Although there may be times when working an undesirable shift is inevitable, you can reduce the risk of getting stuck with an assignment you do not want by working with a recruiter. When you work with a recruiter, you can tell them the type of settings and shifts you prefer and let them help you negotiate your contracts. While having a recruiter is not a requirement to get local travel nursing jobs, having one in your corner never hurts!


There is a demand for local travel nurses, and more than a few reasons why. First, there is a nationwide shortage of nurses, which means hospitals and other healthcare facilities need qualified nurses to fill vacant spots to provide patient care. The shortage is attributed to several factors, including nurses reaching retirement age and an aging population with chronic health problems who need care. Additionally, workplace stress from major events, such as the COVID-19 pandemic, has led many nurses to take extended leaves of absence or leave the profession altogether. In either case, that leaves some excellent opportunities for any nurse considering a local travel nurse job.


Local travel nursing jobs offer excellent income opportunities. Several things can impact your earning potential, such as whether you have an associate's or bachelor's degree in nursing, your years of experience, and performance reviews from past employers. Another major factor that influences your pay is the cost of living where you live and work.

States with a lower cost of living, such as South Dakota, Arkansas, and Alabama, pay local travel nurses between $$87,070 and $90,330 annually. States where the cost of living is higher, including Oregon, Hawaii, and California, pay local travel nurses salaries ranging from $143,920 to $180,000 yearly.

A few examples of the cost of living compared to earnings are South Dakota and California. For instance, the cost of living in South Dakota is $1,855 per person per month or $22,260 yearly. Local travel nurses in South Dakota earn an average of $87,070 annually. Conversely, in California, where the average annual cost of living is $53,0782, local travel nurses earn approximately $180,000 per year.

State Hourly Weekly Monthly Annual
Alabama $43.43 $1,737 $7,530 $90,330
Alaska $67.05 $2,682 $11,620 $139,460
Arizona $56.30 $2,252 $9,760 $117,100
Arkansas $43.18 $1,727 $7,480 $89,810
California $86.54 $3,462 $15,000 $180,000
Colorado $56.20 $2,248 $9,740 $116,890
Connecticut $61.18 $2,447 $10,600 $127,250
Delaware $55.18 $2,207 $9,560 $114,770
Florida $51.87 $2,075 $8,990 $107,880
Georgia $55.28 $2,211 $9,580 $114,990
Hawaii $73.48 $2,939 $12,740 $152,840
Idaho $51.02 $2,041 $8,840 $106,120
Illinois $53.36 $2,134 $9,250 $110,990
Indiana $49.05 $1,962 $8,500 $102,030
Iowa $45.02 $1,801 $7,800 $93,650
Kansas $46.72 $1,869 $8,100 $97,180
Kentucky $50.38 $2,015 $8,730 $104,780
Louisiana $49.27 $1,971 $8,540 $102,490
Maine $50.24 $2,010 $8,710 $104,500
Maryland $57.11 $2,284 $9,900 $118,780
Massachusetts $67.60 $2,704 $11,720 $140,600
Michigan $52.35 $2,094 $9,070 $108,890
Minnesota $57.67 $2,307 $10,000 $119,960
Mississippi $44.09 $1,763 $7,640 $91,700
Missouri $46.64 $1,866 $8,080 $97,010
Montana $50.85 $2,034 $8,810 $105,770
Nebraska $47.71 $1,908 $8,270 $99,240
Nevada $62.50 $2,500 $10,830 $130,010
New Hampshire $54.14 $2,166 $9,380 $112,610
New Jersey $62.74 $2,510 $10,880 $130,500
New Mexico $55.54 $2,222 $9,630 $115,530
New York $64.99 $2,599 $11,260 $135,170
North Carolina $50.25 $2,010 $8,710 $104,510
North Dakota $48.68 $1,947 $8,440 $101,250
Ohio $50.91 $2,037 $8,830 $105,900
Oklahoma $49.92 $1,997 $8,650 $103,840
Oregon $69.19 $2,768 $11,990 $143,920
Pennsylvania $52.33 $2,093 $9,070 $108,850
Rhode Island $57.27 $2,291 $9,930 $119,130
South Carolina $48.24 $1,930 $8,360 $100,340
South Dakota $41.86 $1,674 $7,260 $87,070
Tennessee $47.04 $1,882 $8,150 $97,850
Texas $54.73 $2,189 $9,490 $113,830
Utah $49.59 $1,983 $8,600 $103,140
Vermont $51.91 $2,077 $9,000 $107,980
Virginia $53.13 $2,125 $9,210 $110,510
Washington $65.99 $2,639 $11,440 $137,250
West Virginia $46.88 $1,875 $8,130 $97,510
Wisconsin $52.57 $2,103 $9,110 $109,350
Wyoming $52.58 $2,103 $9,110 $109,360


Local travel nursing pay varies from city to city, not just from one state to the other. For example, St. Louis, Missouri, and Tampa, Florida, offer some of the lowest annual pay at rates of $101,480 and $107,890, respectively. It is no surprise that the cities with the highest wages are located in California, but what may surprise you is that a few of them exceed the statewide average for local travel nursing pay. In Sacramento, California, local travel nurses earn an average of $196,050. In Riverside, they earn $216,200 per year, on average.

Metro Hourly Weekly Monthly Annual
New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA $68.06 $2,722 $11,800 $141,560
Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA $81.36 $3,254 $14,100 $169,220
Chicago-Naperville-Elgin, IL-IN-WI $55.34 $2,213 $9,590 $115,100
Boston-Cambridge-Nashua, MA-NH $69.43 $2,777 $12,040 $144,420
Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington, PA-NJ-DE-MD $57.00 $2,280 $9,880 $118,570
Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, TX $57.01 $2,281 $9,880 $118,590
Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, TX $57.68 $2,307 $10,000 $119,980
Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach, FL $53.10 $2,124 $9,200 $110,440
Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Roswell, GA $58.59 $2,343 $10,160 $121,860
Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV $60.23 $2,409 $10,440 $125,280
Detroit-Warren-Dearborn, MI $53.22 $2,129 $9,230 $110,700
San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA $106.93 $4,277 $18,540 $222,420
Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale, AZ $56.73 $2,269 $9,830 $118,000
Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington, MN-WI $59.83 $2,393 $10,370 $124,450
Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA $68.50 $2,740 $11,870 $142,470
St. Louis, MO-IL $48.79 $1,952 $8,460 $101,480
Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, FL $51.87 $2,075 $8,990 $107,890
Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, CA $78.84 $3,153 $13,670 $163,980
Baltimore-Columbia-Towson, MD $58.09 $2,324 $10,070 $120,830
Cleveland-Elyria, OH $52.58 $2,103 $9,110 $109,370
Denver-Aurora-Lakewood, CO $56.98 $2,279 $9,880 $118,510
San Diego-Carlsbad, CA $76.48 $3,059 $13,260 $159,070
Pittsburgh, PA $49.48 $1,979 $8,580 $102,910
Kansas City, MO-KS $49.70 $1,988 $8,620 $103,380
Indianapolis-Carmel-Anderson, IN $52.21 $2,088 $9,050 $108,600
Cincinnati, OH-KY-IN $52.40 $2,096 $9,080 $109,000
Charlotte-Concord-Gastonia, NC-SC $51.62 $2,065 $8,950 $107,360
Columbus, OH $52.38 $2,095 $9,080 $108,940
Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford, FL $51.35 $2,054 $8,900 $106,810
Portland-Vancouver-Hillsboro, OR-WA $72.44 $2,898 $12,560 $150,670
Sacramento--Roseville--Arden-Arcade, CA $94.25 $3,770 $16,340 $196,050
Nashville-Davidson--Murfreesboro--Franklin, TN $50.13 $2,005 $8,690 $104,270
Milwaukee-Waukesha-West Allis, WI $53.25 $2,130 $9,230 $110,750
San Antonio-New Braunfels, TX $53.89 $2,156 $9,340 $112,100
San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA $103.86 $4,154 $18,000 $216,020
Las Vegas-Henderson-Paradise, NV $63.39 $2,536 $10,990 $131,860
Jacksonville, FL $50.94 $2,038 $8,830 $105,960
Birmingham-Hoover, AL $45.62 $1,825 $7,910 $94,890
Louisville/Jefferson County, KY-IN $52.75 $2,110 $9,140 $109,720
San Juan-Carolina-Caguas, PR $25.23 $1,009 $4,370 $52,470
Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC $51.56 $2,063 $8,940 $107,250
Austin-Round Rock, TX $56.28 $2,251 $9,760 $117,070
Grand Rapids-Wyoming, MI $49.92 $1,997 $8,650 $103,830
Providence-Warwick, RI-MA $57.23 $2,289 $9,920 $119,030
New Orleans-Metairie, LA $51.54 $2,062 $8,930 $107,210
Richmond, VA $53.65 $2,146 $9,300 $111,600
Buffalo-Cheektowaga-Niagara Falls, NY $56.09 $2,243 $9,720 $116,660
Oklahoma City, OK $50.20 $2,008 $8,700 $104,420
Memphis, TN-MS-AR $48.32 $1,933 $8,380 $100,500
Salt Lake City, UT $51.51 $2,061 $8,930 $107,150


In addition to excellent earning potential, local travel nursing comes with lots of other benefits. Each contract is different, so reading the fine print is crucial. If there is something you are unsure about, talking to a recruiter may help. Also, do not be afraid to negotiate for benefits that are not immediately offered to you. Healthcare facilities that are really short-staffed may be inclined to offer higher pay or extra benefits if that is what it takes to get you to sign on the dotted line!

BENEFIT #1: Healthcare Insurance

Many travel nursing agencies offer insurance benefits, including medical, dental, vision, and life insurance options, to local travel nurses. If you are covered by a spouse’s insurance or another plan, you may have the option to opt-out and receive compensation for your part of your private insurance premium. Because benefits vary from one agency to another, it is important to verify insurance coverage and the types of benefits before committing to or opting out of coverage.

BENEFIT #2: You Will Meet New Friends and Widen Your Professional Network

Local travel nursing opens doors of opportunity to make new friends and develop new professional relationships. Every assignment at each facility comes with new faces and people you can establish rapport with and develop friendships that last a lifetime.

BENEFIT #3: Travel Reimbursement

Although local travel nursing jobs do not require long-distance travel, you will still have the benefit of travel reimbursement. Depending on your contract, you may be reimbursed for mileage, meals while on the job, or overnight accommodations at a hotel or Airbnb.

BENEFIT #4: License Reimbursement

Local travel nurses usually receive reimbursement for the cost of license and certification fees. This is an excellent benefit because license and certification renewal fees are not optional if you want to continue working.

BENEFIT #5: You Can Broaden Your Skillset

As a nurse educator, I encourage nurses to find ways to learn new skills. As a local travel nurse, you will have opportunities to work in various settings performing diverse jobs. With those jobs comes the chance to learn new skills and broaden your scope of knowledge, which is something you can take with you to any job in your career.


Local travel nursing jobs offer great opportunities and come with several advantages. However, it is not for everyone. Before you commit wholeheartedly to a local travel nursing job, I recommend considering the following five factors carefully.

FACTOR #1: Do you adjust to change easily?

If your answer to this question is no, then local travel nursing is not for you. Although the jobs you take will be closer to your home than standard travel nursing jobs, each job still varies, sometimes greatly. You need to think seriously about how well you adjust to new environments, working with new people, and getting acclimated to new rules. If you are more comfortable with a set routine and in your “comfort zone,” you may want to think about another nursing role.

FACTOR #2: Are you quick to take on a challenge, or do you back down and leave the hard stuff to someone else?

Nursing in and of itself can be challenging. After all, we care for patients and their loved ones, sometimes in the most critical times of their lives. Our roles require us to think quickly and critically, make patient-centered decisions, and have the confidence to advocate for others when needed. The roles of local travel nurses are no different. What is different is that you must also deal with learning your way around new environments, figuring out what "makes things work" at each facility, and getting acclimated to new routines with each contract. It takes someone who is not afraid of a challenge to succeed in local travel nursing!

FACTOR #3: Are you self-motivated?

One of my best friends is a local travel nurse, and she loves it. When I asked her what was hardest about the job, she told me that keeping herself motivated is sometimes the hardest thing for her. Being a new person can be exciting, but it also means you must step up and show your confidence and abilities, which takes being self-motivated.

FACTOR #4: Are you comfortable managing your finances?

I know this seems like an odd factor to consider, but local travel nursing is not like having a traditional nursing job where you work 40 hours a week and know exactly how much your paycheck will be each pay period. Your pay will vary based on your contract terms, which vary from one job to the next. You need to have a plan for how to manage your money and make sure that you budget for any time between contracts when you plan to take off work or are waiting for a new assignment. You can earn a great income as a local travel nurse, but without proper monetary management, even the wealthiest can get in a bind.

FACTOR #5: How far is too far for a local travel nursing job?

Typically, local travel nursing jobs are between 50 and 200 miles from where you live. Think about whether you want an assignment that allows you to drive home each day or if an assignment that requires overnight or weekly stays away from home is okay with you. Remember, as a local travel nurse, you do not have to accept an assignment, but if you do, you should be prepared to follow through with it. So, think about how far you are willing to travel and take that into consideration when applying for jobs.


If you are a registered nurse interested in venturing out to new healthcare settings or learning new skills, becoming a local travel nurse is an excellent way to do so. In this article, I shared some tips to answer the question, “Who can tell me how to land the best local travel nursing jobs?” With these 15 tips to land the best local travel nursing jobs in 2023, you can get started on your journey and enjoy the benefits and opportunities that come with being a local travel nurse.


1. Is Local Travel Nursing Worth It?

Local travel nursing is a great way to broaden your experiences, learn new skills, and earn a great income. For these reasons alone, I believe it is worth it!

2. Can I Become A Local Travel Nurse?

If you are a registered nurse with an active, unrestricted license with at least one year of experience, you are a great candidate for becoming a local travel nurse. You will have to meet other hiring criteria based on the job you want and any agency or facility guidelines, so keep that in mind as you begin your search for local travel nurse jobs.

3. Can I Be A Local Travel Nurse In My Own State?

Yes, you can be a local travel nurse in your own state. In fact, that is the whole idea of being a "local" travel nurse. With this kind of job, you usually travel no further than 200 miles from your home region.

4. Can I Be A Local Travel Nurse In My Own City?

You can work as a local travel nurse in your own city. Being close to home is one of the great benefits of local travel nursing. You get to earn a great income without having to travel too far from home!

5. Can I Be A Nurse Where I Live?

Of course, you can be a nurse where you live. You must graduate from an accredited nursing program and pass the NCLEX-RN to obtain your license to become a licensed nurse.

6. How Many Years Of Experience Do I Need To Apply For Local Travel Nursing Jobs?

Most local travel nursing jobs require candidates to have at least one year of clinical experience as a registered nurse. However, you may need more experience or certification in a specialty for some assignments. Be sure to verify the criteria for each job that interests you carefully.

7. Do Local Travel Nurses Work On Holidays?

Some local travel nurses work on holidays, and others do not. The days and times you work will depend upon the terms of your individual contract.

8. Do Local Travel Nurses Have Vacation Time?

Local travel nurses usually do not accrue paid time off the way staff nurses do. In most cases, you will simply plan your vacation time and decline any new contracts that require work during the time you want off work.

9. Do Local Travel Nurses Get Stipends?

Local travel nurses may receive stipends. Stipends are tax-free money given to nurses who must duplicate housing expenses to accommodate for work. Therefore, if you must stay away from home for a local travel nurse job, you will likely receive a stipend. If you go home each night, a stipend is usually not part of the deal.

10. On Average, How Much Does A Local Travel Nurse Make Per Hour?

On average, local travel nurses make $57.77 per hour.


11. On Average, How Much Does A Local Travel Nurse Make Per Day?

Local travel nurses make approximately $462.15 per day.


12. On Average, How Much Does A Local Travel Nurse Make Per Week?

The average weekly pay for local travel nurses is $2,311.


13. On Average, How Much Does A Local Travel Nurse Make Per Month?

On average, local travel nurses earn $10,010 per month.


14. On Average, How Much Does A Local Travel Nurse Make Per Year?

The average annual salary for nurses working local travel nurse jobs is $120,160.


Darby Faubion, RN, BSN, MBA
Darby Faubion is a nurse and Allied Health educator with over twenty years of experience. She has assisted in developing curriculum for nursing programs and has instructed students at both community college and university levels. Because of her love of nursing education, Darby became a test-taking strategist and NCLEX prep coach and assists nursing graduates across the United States who are preparing to take the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX).