Healthcare travel can be an exciting and rewarding career path, offering the opportunity to explore new places, meet new people, and gain valuable work experience. For those who travel with a family, the experience can be more complex. Healthcare traveler families often face unique obstacles, such as finding suitable housing, ensuring access to quality education, and maintaining strong relationships with loved ones while being away for extended periods. Below, we’ll offer tips and advice on navigating these challenges and provide insight into what it takes to successfully balance a career in healthcare travel with family life.
To-dos before hitting the road
First, create and reinforce a team mentality. You’re not a solo artist when traveling with family — so make sure the band is aligned and in tune!
- Before you hit the road, plan travel routes and discuss new routines.
- Talk about business items but discuss some exciting stuff, like fun activities along the highway or during the assignment.
- Get your belongings organized beforehand—separate items for donation, storage, and what you’ll bring along.
- Delegate and get your partner or kids involved in pre-travel tasks. This gives everyone a stake in the experience and helps ease your workload.
- Repeat the delegation and task-sharing process upon arrival. Although it’s wisest to map out your ideas before, those first days of orientation can be hard work with so much to learn. Prepare ahead to help manage stress!
- Your day-to-day family environment changes while on assignment. Work as a team to ensure everyone has their own space — however small! — in your new home.
- Remind each other how lucky you are! Travel nursing as a family should be a unique and wonderful experience for everyone. You’re creating memories together that will last forever — with some preparation, teamwork, and gratitude, you can make them great memories.
- Reevaluate with your family before extending or taking a new assignment.
Determine your housing needs
Finding housing for healthcare traveler families works differently based on your situation. If you’re only traveling with your significant other, the one-bedroom apartment they put you in should still work. Larger accommodation is the norm if you add one or more kids, and extended-stay hotels are harder to find. Before taking a travel nursing job, discuss your family’s housing needs with your recruiter. Research the area you plan on working in to gain insight into local rental prices.
Prioritizing your family
Making time for loved ones and maintaining relationships on assignment can be challenging. Being away for extended periods can create a sense of distance and separation, and it’s important to prioritize staying connected with your family while on the road. Regular video chats, phone calls, and sending postcards or care packages can help bridge the physical distance and connect you with your loved ones. Additionally, involving your family in your travels can be a great way to create shared experiences and strengthen your bond. Consider exploring new places together during your time off or inviting your family to visit you at your assignment location.
Maximize your days off
Healthcare travelers with family are fortunate to have loved ones join them in their outdoor adventures and appreciate sharing everything from local dining spots and sporting events to theme parks and cultural performances. Many also find that traveling with kids is great for expanding kids’ frame of reference and developing life skills.
Effective time management is crucial for healthcare travelers with families, who must balance the demands of their job with caring for their loved ones. Without proper time management, healthcare travelers may find themselves struggling to find time for self-care and quality time with their families. To help healthcare travelers with families manage their time effectively, here are some useful tips:
- Create a schedule or routine: Establishing a daily or weekly schedule can help healthcare travelers with families manage their time more efficiently. This includes scheduling work hours, breaks, family time, and other activities. A routine can also help reduce stress and provide a sense of structure for healthcare travelers and their families while on the road.
- Set realistic goals: Setting realistic goals is key to effective time management. Healthcare travelers with families should prioritize their tasks based on urgency and importance and set achievable goals to avoid feeling overwhelmed. Breaking down larger goals into smaller, more manageable tasks can also make them more attainable.
- Delegate tasks when possible: Healthcare travelers with families should not hesitate to delegate tasks when necessary. This includes enlisting the help of colleagues, family, or friends to assist with tasks like meal prep, errands, or childcare. Delegating tasks can help healthcare travelers with families save time and reduce stress.
How Magnet Medical can help
If you’re considering starting to travel with your family and looking for your next assignment, Magnet strives to provide smooth, exceptional experiences for all involved. Want to learn more about what Magnet can do for you? Contact our team today!