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Navigating the Seas of Work and Family Life: A Travel Nurse’s Compass


Balancing work and family life as a travel nurse is always a challenge. With the varied work locations, long hours, and the constant moving, it seems like a Herculean task to maintain an equilibrium between these two significant parts of your life. However, don’t let this deter you. With planning, communication, and a dose of flexibility, it is absolutely possible to be a successful travel nurse and a devoted family member. Also, keep in mind that sometimes family refers to your children and significant other while others refer to parents, siblings and extended family.

In this blog, we discuss maintaining a healthy work-life balance as a travel nurse.


Balancing Work and Family as a Travel Nurse: Being Away From Family on Travel Assignments

Planning and Prioritizing

Prioritizing is key in any work-life balance, but it takes on amplified importance for travel nurses. Before accepting a new assignment, evaluate it in terms of your personal and family needs. Ask about the hours, the workload, and the time off. Make sure to weigh these factors in relation to your family’s needs. It is also essential to plan your family time meticulously to you make the most out of the time you get to spend with your loved ones.


Transparency is vital to any successful relationship, and it’s particularly crucial for maintaining work-life balance as a travel nurse. Regularly talk with your family about the unique challenges and benefits that come with your profession. Discuss how your schedule works, when you’ll be home, and when you’ll be away. Remember to listen to their concerns and suggestions too. They are part of this journey with you, and their insights provide you with new ways to balance work and family life.

Flexible Family Time

Being a travel nurse often means spending extended periods away from home. Use technology to your advantage to keep in touch. Regular video calls, sharing photos, and messaging makes you feel connected even when miles apart. Also, consider bringing your family along for assignments when possible. This could turn your work trip into a mini-family vacation and create a memorable bonding experience.


It’s easy to forget about your own needs when you’re trying to balance work and family life. However, remember that you can’t pour from an empty cup. Make sure to incorporate self-care routines into your schedule, like exercising, meditating, or reading. Your physical and mental well-being is the foundation upon which work-life balance rests.

Support Network

Building a strong support network is a lifesaver when balancing work and family life as a travel nurse. This network includes colleagues who understand your unique challenges, friends who offer a sympathetic ear, and family who lend a helping hand when necessary. An effective support network provides both practical assistance and emotional support.

Embrace the Benefits

Finally, focus on the benefits that your role as a travel nurse brings to your family. You’re exposing your family to new experiences and cultures, teaching them resilience, and showing them the importance of helping others. This instills values like adaptability, empathy, and understanding, which are invaluable life skills.

Balancing work and family life as a travel nurse isn’t easy, but with these strategies, it is possible to navigate these challenging waters successfully. Remember, balance doesn’t mean perfect equality. Sometimes work requires more attention, and at other times, family takes precedence. The goal is not to attain perfection but to achieve a flexible equilibrium that serves both your professional ambitions and personal responsibilities. With each new assignment, you’ll continue to learn, grow, and become more proficient at this balancing act.

Being away from family is hard, so why not bring them with you on each assignment? Is it even possible?

Yes, it is, and it is not only possible but also a fulfilling and enriching experience for the entire family!

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Balancing Work and Family as a Travel Nurse: A New Spin on ‘Bring Your Family to Work’ Day


Travel nurses, by the nature of their jobs, are always on the go. They have to be. Assignments last months and often require relocation to different regions. This makes for an exciting lifestyle for the individual but seems challenging when there’s a family involved. However, many travel nurses have discovered that rather than seeing their families as an obstacle to their careers, they just bring their families along on their adventures, turning each assignment into a family journey.

Imagine being able to show your children the Grand Canyon or let them experience a white Christmas in New York because your job brought you there. As a travel nurse, the world is your family’s classroom, opening their eyes to experiences far beyond what they learn in school.

The Challenges of Being a Travel Nurse with a Family and How to Overcome Them

Of course, with this unconventional lifestyle come challenges. Housing, education, and maintaining a sense of normalcy are three of the primary concerns for travel nurses with families.


Often, staffing firms offer housing stipends for travel nurses. However, these are typically designed for single occupants or couples, not families. To tackle this, travel nurses with families look for housing options that allow short-term lease agreements. Additionally, negotiate housing stipends to cater to their family’s needs.


For those with school-aged children, continuous travel seems disruptive. Luckily, with the advent of online education and homeschooling, it’s possible to provide consistent and high-quality education for children while on the move. It’s crucial to research local laws and guidelines for homeschooling or online schooling in each new location. Some nurses only travel with the family during the summer and make the assignment a family vacation.


While traveling is exciting, constant changes sometimes feel unsettling. It’s essential to establish a sense of routine and carry elements of home with you wherever you go. Consider creating unique family rituals or traditions that are practiced irrespective of location, such as Friday family movie nights or Sunday breakfasts together.


The Perks of Being a Travel Nurse with a Family


Despite the challenges, there are numerous benefits that come with being a travel nurse with a family.

1. Cultural Exposure

Traveling provides an opportunity for your family to be exposed to various cultures, lifestyles, and environments. It allows them to become adaptable and helps them to understand and appreciate diversity.

2. Family Bonding

Moving and adapting to new places as a unit brings your family closer together. Shared experiences, whether exploring a new city, trying local cuisines, or learning about different cultures, creates a bond that is unique and unbreakable.

3. Life Skills

Traveling teaches critical life skills such as adaptability, problem-solving, and resilience. For children, especially, being exposed to these lessons early on is tremendously beneficial.

In conclusion, being a travel nurse with a family is not just a possibility; it’s a fantastic opportunity for growth, bonding, and adventure. It requires careful planning and a great deal of flexibility, but the benefits that you and your family reap make it all worthwhile. And remember, at the heart of your journey is your invaluable contribution as a nurse, extending your care from your family to the world.

Whether you decide to leave your family at home or take them along for the journey, you are able to maintain a healthy work-life balance as a travel nurse.

Are you looking for your next assignment as a travel nurse? Where next? Let one of Voca’s recruiters help you, contact us today!

About Voca: The Spirit of Work

Voca is a relationship organization focused on uniting talented healthcare professionals across nursing and allied, as well as travel and local with exceptional companies. Headquartered in Rochester, MN, Voca works coast-to-coast supporting national, regional, and local healthcare companies. Voca is proud to be certified by The Joint Commission, which evaluates and accredits healthcare staffing agency organizations and programs in the United States. We are committed to creating and maintaining a workplace in which all employees have an opportunity to participate and contribute to our mutual success and are valued for their skills, experience, and unique perspective. For more information, visit https://myvoca.com/.