There is a special kind of beauty that goes hand in hand with a rural travel nursing contract — a small-town atmosphere, new culture and traditions, exploring somewhere you likely would never see otherwise, and a community that heavily relies on your skills as a nurse.

While all travel contracts are unique, there are a few commonalities we’ve seen amongst rural nursing locations that can help you prepare.

 

1. Bring Essentials

Depending on where you’re going, you may not be able to check ahead of time to see what the local selection of staples is like. So we recommend bringing any must-haves with you. Your favourite shampoo and conditioner, antiperspirant, feminine hygiene products — anything that will make your stay comfortable is worth bringing. Deliveries may be slow or not possible for online shopping, so consider that when packing as well.

 

2. Introduce Yourself

In small, rural towns, it’s likely that you’ll run into some of the same folks throughout your stay. When you arrive, take time to introduce yourself to not only your coworkers but also your neighbours, the salesperson helping you in a shop, or the server bringing you food or coffee. You never know who’ll become a new friend!

 

3. Spend Time Outdoors

In a place and time where indoor activities are limited, prepare yourself for some good times outdoors. It’s a great way to make sure you get the most out of your time in a rural community. Pack for the climate so that you can venture out on your off days, rain or shine (or snow!), and ask around for any recommended trails or parks. We love taking long walks while listening to a podcast, but if cellphone reception is spotty where you’re staying, be sure to download an episode or some music before heading out.

 

4. Study Up

Many travel nurses use their remote contracts as a learning experience, but some actually double-down and use their free time on the road to continue their education by taking online courses that can be useful to their practice. We recommend every nurse be trained to help de-escalate aggression and for nurses who work both directly and indirectly with Indigenous people, San’yas Indigenous Cultural Safety Training is incredibly important as well.

There’s something so unique and special about your first rural travel nursing contract, but it’s important to be prepared. Learn more about the benefits of travel nursing, or see our current nursing job opportunities.