How Much I Made As a Traveler Last Year

Nurse with high income.

Choosing a career as a healthcare traveler can bring so much life satisfaction. What other career offers flexibility, opportunities for professional growth, amazing pay, and the chance to explore new cities of your choice? In this blog post, we share the stories of three healthcare travelers and how the last year turned out for them.

Sarah P., Intensive Care Unit RN – $128,867 for the year

Last January, I took my first travel assignment of the year as an ICU RN in Indianapolis, Indiana. It was a 13-week assignment at $3,088 per week, for 48 hours per week. I made $40,144 for that assignment. That brought me to April 7th.

I then took 2 weeks off to go home, but I had lined up my next travel assignment for Washington DC. This was another 13-week assignment in the ICU at $2,837 per week, 36 HPW. That assignment went until July 21st. After the first 13 weeks, I took a week off and then extended for 8 more weeks, which brought me to September 22nd. This extension was at the same rate. For my stint in DC, I made $59,577. I was also able to go home a few times when scheduling allowed so I didn’t feel like I wanted or needed to take off too much time in-between assignments.

After my time in DC, it was time for me to move on. I took one week off and started a new 13-week assignment in another ICU in Boise, Idaho for $2,242 per week at 36 HPW. This assignment started October 2nd and will bring me to the end of the year, so I will be home just in time for New Year’s. For this contract, I will make a gross total of $29,146 without picking up any extra overtime.

So, for the 47 weeks of work I did this year, I will have earned $128,867 as a travel ICU RN. I had a total of 5 weeks off, and I also got to go home multiple times when scheduling allowed it. On top of that, I got to live in three different cities – my favorite being Boise so far. The friends and the memories I have made make me want to either extend or come back. I have plenty of cities on my bucket list so I will have to decide soon!

Had I taken more 48 HPW assignments or picked up extra shifts I would have made way more, but I am happy with my 36 HPW situation!

In summary:

  • 1st Assignment: $40,144 in Indianapolis, IN
  • 2nd Assignment + Extension: $59,577 in Washington DC
  • 3rd Assignment: $29,146 in Boise, ID
  • Total: $128,867, 47 weeks of work / 5 weeks off


Amanda K., Pediatric ED RN – $137,360 for the year

I have been traveling for 3 years as a Pediatric Emergency Department RN already including taking crazy 60 HPW contracts during COVID and back-to-back assignments ever since. This year I decided to take it a little easy on myself.

I didn’t take my first assignment of the year until February because I had my sister’s wedding in Jamaica in January and did not want to feel rushed from the wedding to my start date. I started my first 13-week assignment of the year on February 6th in Washington DC. This contract was $5,613 per week at 48 HPW. I know I stated this year was going to be “easier,” but I could not pass up that great of a pay package. My DC assignment ended on May 9th, 2023.

After my assignment in Washington DC, I had 6 full weeks off until my next assignment in Minnesota that started on June 24th with an end date of September 23rd. This 13-week assignment was $3,389 per week with 36 HPW. Throughout this assignment, I not only fell in love with the state of Minnesota, but I also fell in love with the Twin Cities. There was so much to do throughout the summer that I accepted a 6-week extension that would go from October 2nd until November 9th. This extension was the same pay at $3,389 per week at 36 HPW. I wanted to stay on the 36 HPW schedule as it allowed me to explore all that the Twin Cities had to offer. My extension did not start until October 2nd, which gave me 9 days off to go back home before my extension.

So, for the entire year, I worked a total of 37 weeks and had 15 weeks off and my gross earnings were $137,360. My favorite location by far was the Twin Cities. Not only is there so much going on in the city, but there are ample opportunities to get outdoors to their lakes and parks.

In summary:

  • 1st Assignment: $72,969 in Washington DC
  • 2nd Assignment + Extension: $64,391 in Minneapolis, MN
  • Total: $137,360, 37 weeks of work / 15 weeks off


Eric H., CT Tech – $109,824 for the year

Going into the new year, I had one goal and that was to travel as much as possible. For the past 3 years, I grinded taking 48 HPW contracts, picking up all the overtime I could, and taking contracts back-to-back to pay off debt. After becoming debt-free, I started my year by spending January and February in Norway and Sweden with the goal of my first travel assignment starting in March.

My first assignment was in Portage, Wisconsin, which started on March 20th and ended on June 17th. It had a weekly gross rate of $3,899 at 40 HPW. Portage is not the biggest town, but it has a unique charm to it. I truly loved spending my time walking along the rivers and enjoying the outdoors.

After that assignment, I took my second and final assignment of the year in the Twin Cities. It was a 13-week assignment at $4,549 per week. It started in July and ended in October. This gave me three weeks in between assignments and I spent that time exploring National Forests and State Parks on my way to Minnesota.

I was a little worried about the urban aspect of the Twin Cities, but quickly fell in love with the number of lakes and parks that were in the city. Also, the North Shore is a great getaway if you have a few days off. After my assignment in Minnesota was complete, I went home for the rest of October before leaving for Norway again! I spent my November and December in Norway and that concluded my 2023 traveling year.

In summary:

  • 1st assignment: $50,687 in Portage, WI
  • 2nd assignment: $59,137 in Minneapolis, MN
  • Total: $109,824, 26 weeks of work / 26 weeks off