Working as a travel nurse is exciting. Every few weeks, you get to become an honorary resident of a new city, allowing yourself to become fully immersed in the local culture, without having to put down roots.
You enjoy the free-spirited nature of the job, but constantly being new in town can put you in a vulnerable position. Crime happens everywhere — no matter how safe a city seems — so always be on alert. Here’s some advice to help you stay safe on every travel nursing assignment.
Keep in Close Contact With Loved Ones
Your family and friends are likely hundreds or even thousands of miles away, but technology makes it easy to stay in touch. Keep them informed of your whereabouts, from your journey into a new city to happy hours with co-workers.
When people you’re in constant contact with don’t hear from you for a bit, they check in. Having these relationships is crucial because if something unthinkable does happen, they can contact the authorities in a timely manner.
Develop a Relationship With Your Recruiter
Your recruiter helps you find work, but that’s not all the services they provide. If you have an issue with an assignment, they’re the first person to call, so you should feel comfortable with them. The better your relationship, the sooner you’re likely to reach out if something doesn’t feel right. Catching a possible safety concern early can make all the difference.
Research the Area
No matter where you are, knowing your surroundings is crucial. Before traveling to a new city, research the area where you’ll be living and working. Being informed of recent happenings and places to avoid can help you stay safe. After you arrive, continue immersing yourself by living like a permanent resident in every way — i.e., watching the local news and using sites like Nextdoor to stay informed of potential safety issues.
Befriend Your Co-Workers
Getting to know the people you’re working alongside is fun and offers the added benefit of helping you stay out of harm’s way. As true locals, they can help you learn which parts of town are safe and which to avoid. Building friendships also means you’ll have people to hang out with outside of work. Safety in numbers is truly a thing, so aim to practice it as much as possible.