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Budget-Friendly Tips for Travel Nurses
Budgeting is essential for all of us; however, it is even more important for travel nurses. During your career, you will have multiple 13-week contracts in different cities, and you must plan accordingly to ensure you have the funds during and between assignments. While tracking finances can be stressful and at times seem difficult, we have compiled a list of our top tips to help make your money last and enjoy your contracts!
Track Your Spending
During your travels, you may find yourself spending more than intended. It is easier to spend money while on the road than at home. However, it is important to keep track of your expenses. While your budget may fluctuate depending on your assignment and location, make sure to set a monthly budget. This will allow you to live comfortably and to have backup finances in case of emergencies. Create a list, spreadsheet, or download an app, to jot down everything you purchase during each month, including rent, streaming subscriptions, phone, groceries, gas, entertainment, etc., to give yourself a better idea of how much you spend and what to budget.
Finding housing can be stressful. Whether you go through Airbnb, Vrbo, or other rentals, it never hurts to ask for a discount during your long stay. There are some rentals that give a weekly or monthly discount, but you can always ask if they will lower the rent for a 13-week stay. Another suggestion from other travel nurses is to only rent one week, and ask your fellow coworkers about housing. They may be or know of someone looking for a short-term roommate that is not listed on the internet.
Meal prep is a great way to save money! There are tons of websites that provide helpful information on meal prepping and how to get the most out of your money. Purchasing meals at the cafeteria or going out to eat can empty your wallet quickly. While it is completely fine to treat yourself to a nice restaurant every so often, try making your own meals as much as you can. Not only will you enhance your cooking skills, but you will also have a sense of reward for saving money.
An easy way to save money is using coupons! Look for coupons in local ads or online to save money on groceries, restaurants, and other shopping. Most grocery stores offer discounts for members, so when you first arrive in your new city, find a grocery store you like and get a membership card. If you are looking for savings for local experiences, check out Groupon. Groupon offers tons of discounts for local attractions, events, and activities to do either solo or with friends.
Free Local Activities
Before you move to your new city, you will more than likely look up things to do for your days off. Browsing the city’s website or Facebook are great sources for free local events. You can also ask your coworkers about some fun, free activities they like to do in the area. If you love the outdoors, hiking is typically low cost and offers stunning scenery!
Travel with Friends
Our last budget tip is to travel with friends. Whether you have a friend who is a travel nurse, or you meet a fellow travel nurse during one of your assignments, traveling with others will save you money. Facilities typically offer contracts for more than just travel nurses such as Allied or HCS, so you both are bound to find an assignment in the same city. Sharing housing and transportation, while splitting payments, will give you more money in your pocket to either save or use to treat yourself!
Are you a nurse that craves adventure and loves helping others? Click here to apply today and begin your travel nursing career!