BHS Blog / Healthcare News and Trends

3 Travel Nurse Housing Options for Your Next Assignment

Posted on: August 30th, 2022

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wooden blocks shaped like houses with a yellow destination pin in front-centerSo you’ve just booked a travel nursing assignment, and now you have to secure your housing accommodations. Luckily, when you work with Barton Healthcare Staffing, you’re not alone in your search. Not only do you receive a housing stipend to put toward your travel nurse housing accommodations, but you also get a whole travel team on your side, devoted to guiding and assisting you to not only find housing options, but also to help you decide which option is most suitable for your specific assignment and ultimately the right choice for you.

Many first-time and newer travel nurses are under the misconception that hotels are their only housing offering option for every assignment. But one of the advantages of travel nursing is that when you get your stipend, you are free to use it toward whatever travel accommodations you wish, including flights, rental cars, and whichever form of travel nurse housing you may choose.

Now that you know how stipends work, you’ll have to decide from a wide variety of housing for travel options, all of which have their own pros and cons, and are suitable for different assignment lengths and needs.

Hotels

Because the majority of hotels have limited space and living accommodations, such as kitchens, they are generally more fitting for short term travel nursing jobs ranging from a few days to 3 weeks. A travel nurse may choose to stay in a hotel because there are generally many options available in interesting and convenient locations, like near the airport or by attractions of interest.

An exclusive nurse advantage when you choose to book a hotel for your travel nurse housing is that oftentimes hotels offer special discounts for healthcare workers. Discounts can range anywhere between 15 to 65 percent off when you register on ID.me, but we saved you the trouble of looking for the best available discounts in our Nurse Discounts 2022: Trip Planning on a Budget blog!

One obvious, yet often overlooked perk of hotels is the room cleaning service included with your stay! Plus, while your room gets some TLC, you can take advantage of the amenities offered by most hotels such as the gym or pool. But the best thing about booking a hotel for your travel nurse housing is that in the case that you decide your assignment isn’t right for you after all, most hotels will generally allow you to cancel your reservation within 24 to 48 hours notice.

On the other hand, if you do love your assignment and end up accepting an extension, there are times when a hotel may not be able to extend your stay because they have other reservations lined up. Because many standard hotels don’t have a space for cooking or storage for food, another downside is that you’ll likely be spending more than you would like on eating out or ordering room service.

Luckily, there’s an alternative route to save you money on food and extend your stay while still getting that lavish hotel experience! Extended stay hotels allow you to book a longer-term stay and cook your own meals in an in-room kitchen, all at a more affordable cost with added personalized services to make you feel right at home.

If you’re planning to bring along your furry friend, just be sure to do your research in advance with tools like Bring Fido, which lists pet friendly hotels in the location you’re searching for.

AirBnBs

AirBnBs can be a suitable option for travel nurse housing regardless of whether your assignment is short- or long-term, but you’ll have to do some research. They come with their own list of pros and cons, so at the end of the day, whether an AirBnB is the most suitable housing accommodation for you and your needs is up to your own discretion.

A common reason why travel nurses opt to lodge in an AirBnB for assignments is because there are so many options to choose from, which can fit every individual budget, preference, need, and comfort level. Similarly to hotels, some AirBnB options are more lavish than others, and as such, come with a higher price tag. But since most AirBnBs are a more furnished housing option than your average hotel room, many consider the greater comfort level to be worth the price, and make up for the higher price tag with the savings of cooking in their rental instead of eating out.

Another similarity between hotels and AirBnBs, however, is a potential unavailability of sufficient reservation dates to cover your whole assignment, as well as the unpredictability of whether or not you can extend your stay if your assignment is extended. Because AirBnBs, like hotels, are reserved in advance, there’s always a chance that somebody else has already booked your rental for dates directly following your stay. In addition to this, depending on the Squatter’s Rights laws within the state you’re booking in, AirBnB may limit your occupancy to no longer than 30 days. Some AirBnBs may also have other restrictive rules regarding visitors and pets, so be sure to look into the fine print attached to your reservation before you book.

Something else to keep in mind when considering whether an AirBnB is right for your next travel nurse assignment is that while guests can pay for reservations in installments, all of your booking fees are due before your stay begins; which means that, aside from viewing photos in-app, you cannot view the property before you pay.

Apartments

Apartment options are more fitting for long-term assignments spanning over three months time; mainly because three months is usually the shortest lease term which most rental property owners will offer.

Because most travel nursing assignments are usually no longer than thirteen weeks, travel healthcare professionals generally skip over apartments when considering housing options unless they have already been extended for a considerable amount of additional time. Though it is rare for a travel nurse to rent an apartment on assignment, this option does have its advantages, and there are often options to rent for less than 3 months that you can search for on Furnished Finder.

Like AirBnBs, apartments can offer a higher level of comfort for your stay and come with more furnishings and utilities like kitchens, where you can cook to save money on eating out. Many can also come not only fully furnished, but also with extra amenities such as a gym or pool.

If you’re considering renting an apartment for your travel nurse housing on assignment, it’s always best to find a property that allows you to extend your lease on a month-to-month basis. This way, if your assignment is extended then you can continue to rent, and if you find the job isn’t right for you, you just have to pay for your last month living in the property.

Unfortunately, one of the downsides of renting an apartment for travel nurse housing is that, depending on location and condition of the rental market, finding a month-to-month lease can be difficult. If you aren’t able to find a property where you can rent on a month-to-month basis, then you run the risk of getting stuck paying rent for a property that you don’t live in if you leave your assignment early.

Regardless of which housing accommodation you lean towards, the one thing they all have in common is that pricing and availability can differ depending on a wide range of factors. So if you remember one key takeaway, it should be to always do your research, and give yourself plenty of time to do it! But of course, if you do ever find yourself stuck, Barton Healthcare Staffing is here to assist you in any way possible.

Have more questions about travel with Barton Healthcare Staffing? Visit our travel page to learn more, or fill out our contact form to connect with us!

Karina Kagramanov
About Karina Kagramanov

As the Content Marketing Copywriter at Barton Healthcare Staffing, Karina conceptualizes and creates engaging written and video content for Barton Healthcare Staffing, Wellhart, and their parent company, Barton Associates. They joined Barton in March of 2021 after graduating from UMass Amherst with Bachelor degrees in Integrated Business & Humanities and Communication. They are currently pursuing their Masters Degree in Digital Marketing at Southern New Hampshire University. In their free time, you can find Karina training at their local boxing gym or learning how to cook a new pasta recipe.