Occupational therapy travel jobs offer healthcare professionals the opportunity to work on short-term contracts in locations nationwide. They’re often offered higher pay and more benefits than traditional positions. Most OTs and COTAs find assignments through healthcare staffing agencies specializing in travel healthcare. Here’s why joining a travel agency could help boost your career.
You’ll Build Your Credentials
Occupational therapy is a career path that attracts many people who want to make a difference in the lives of others. Travel therapy assignments can be the perfect solution for those who want to add a little adventure to their careers. These temporary jobs are 13 weeks long, giving you plenty of time to explore a new location like a local and make friends with fellow travelers. You can line up back-to-back assignments to stay longer in one destination or take short breaks between contracts. Travel therapists also gain a wide range of experience working in different environments, which will help them build their skill sets and prepare for future positions. They learn to adapt to diverse patient populations, regional nursing procedures and clinical environments. This enables them to work across healthcare settings and advance their skill sets more quickly than a permanent employee. Also Read – 12 Perfect Career Choices for an Active Lifestyle
You’ll Make More Money
Getting paid well is an important part of any job, and it’s no different for travel therapy jobs. The good news is that you can make more money as a travel therapist than you would in a permanent position because of the tax-free stipends included in the pay package. These stipends can be used for housing, meals or other expenses and are not subject to income taxes. However, you must maintain a tax home to take advantage of these benefits. Depending on your situation and tax filing status, you may be better off keeping a tax home in the city where your assignment is located or close to your family’s.
The best way to determine if you’ll earn enough to meet your financial goals is by working with an agency, such as Triage Staffing, that has access to many opportunities and matching you with assignments compatible with your desired locations, durations and clinical settings. Also, working with a recruiter you can trust to negotiate and advocate on your behalf is essential.
One of the travelers’ biggest challenges is finding the right agencies to work with. You need to find a company that values you and your career, matches you with assignments you’ll be excited about, pays competitively, provides the best benefits possible and supports your professional development.
You’ll Get More Experience
OTs often travel to rural areas with severe shortages of healthcare professionals. In these communities, travel therapists can fill an essential need and help their patients regain the skills necessary to live independently.
Traveling also gives you the chance to work in a variety of different settings and learn more about your specialties. Working as a travel PT or OT exposes you to regional nursing procedures and patient populations, which can enhance your clinical experience. In addition, you can learn from the experiences of other travel therapists and find a mentor to guide your career path. Your recruiter will also be able to provide tips on handling a new job, balancing your home life with the demands of a travel assignment, and getting the most out of your experience as a travel therapist.
Another benefit of being a travel therapist is having more flexibility in scheduling. You can line up back-to-back jobs to stay in a place longer or take time off between contracts. Having this flexibility helps you maintain a healthy work-life balance and prevents burnout.
You’ll Have More Flexibility
There’s no shortage of travel therapy agencies, but that doesn’t mean all are created equal. Finding the right agency to work with depends on your goals and career aspirations. You want to work with an agency that understands your needs and has a history of matching you with great assignments. Choosing the right recruiter is also critical to getting the most out of your experience as a travel therapist. Your recruiter will help you land jobs and provide support throughout your assignment. They should be honest about the pay you can expect and available opportunities in your area of expertise. They should be responsive and easy to reach. They should also be familiar with any upcoming license changes that may impact your job search and provide you with all the information you need to move quickly and effectively.
When you’re ready to begin your travel journey, you must organize and prepare your documents to hit the ground running. This includes a resume, certifications, licenses, transcripts, and other required documentation for your job. Using a tool like Kamana to store and share these documents is ideal for keeping everything organized and making it easier to get matched with jobs. Working as a travel OT or PT can be a great way to boost your resume and explore new areas of the country or even new specialties.