Being a travel nurse opens the door to seeing the country, gaining new experience, and making more money. We talked with Allie Hall, AKA The Debt Free Nurse, to learn how travel nurses can maximize their salary, achieve savings goals, and tackle debt. Keep reading for her tips for how travel nurses can better manage their hard-earned money!
How does travel nursing allow people to tackle debt and save money?
Travel nursing allows nurses to increase their income! As a local travel nurse, I increased my hourly rate from $32/hour to $93/ hour which helped me increase my savings! Many travel jobs right now are a higher hourly rate which helps if you want to pay off debt and save money! It also offers tax free stipends if you are duplicating expenses which decreases your taxable income, so you have more money in your pockets to save, invest, and pay off debt.
Why is focusing on making more money sometimes more important than trying to cut things out of your budget?
So many times, people are taught to cut expenses first when they start a budget. Unfortunately, there is only so many things we can cut from a budget like subscriptions and eating out. I find that focusing too much on the little things can only get us so far but focusing more on increasing your income can have huge benefits! Having more money will in turn help you have more expendable income to achieve whatever money goal you are focusing on!
How can healthcare travelers maximize their income?
Maximizing your income can be done by traveling of course because we are making more income! Really taking advantage of this increase in income is huge in creating a life that you want and using travel nursing to the fullest. Having a substantial savings account in a high interest savings account and contributing to retirement are both ways to maximize that income you are making!
What is a payday routine and how can travelers implement one?
A payday routine is essentially automating your money every paycheck to achieve your goals. It’s so much easier to set it and forget it so that you are ALWAYS in the habit of saving and knowing where your money is going. For example, every payday I have a percentage taken out for retirement and savings. I know what amount I can spend in guilt free spending, and I make sure my bills are paid!
What accounts do you recommend travelers have and why?
First make sure you have a bank that doesn’t charge fees and know what those fees are if they do. I have one account for checking where my paychecks go and things come out of. Then I have a high interest savings account for my emergency fund and my time off fund! These are essential funds for travelers because our work is not guaranteed. Next, I recommend looking into what retirement accounts you have access to! If you are eligible, open a Roth IRA because that is not tied to any company!
What is your biggest piece of financial advice for travelers?
SAVE FOR THE UNKNOWN! You want to be able to walk away if a job cuts your rate or if you feel unsafe. Your license is never worth the money! Having that security blanket or cushion gives you endless options!
What are good financial habits travelers should be practicing?
Automate your bills, automate your savings, have an emergency fund, and save for time off! Also make sure you have money set aside to enjoy yourself because we work HARD!
How can travelers set attainable financial goals and stick to them?
Financial goals need to be specific and attainable. I found that before I set financial goals, my money would disappear every month. Creating good financial habits with higher income is definitely easier, but don’t fall into the trap of making more and spending more. Write out short term goals and long-term goals and really visualize you achieving them! Having a good relationship with money also helps too.
What steps can travelers take to start paying off debt?
- Know your debt! Write out the amount, interest rate, and get specific!
- Choose a debt payoff plan! Are you going to use the debt avalanche, paying highest interest to lowest interest, or the debt snowball, smallest amount to biggest? Either way working on one debt at a time is much more achievable! Also factor in your emotional ties to the debt. Is one debt stressing you out more? Focus on that one first!
- Automate your debt payment AKA pay them on the day you get paid and pretend that money you are allocating to your debt doesn’t exist.
- If you are paying off credit cards, don’t continue to use the credit cards while paying them off!
Why is investing important for travelers?
We all want to retire right? Well, the easiest way to retire early is to invest! Having accounts like a Roth IRA (if eligible) and a 401K/ 403b are accounts that hold investments is key. Investing also offers a way to beat inflation, so you won’t have to work forever. The earlier we open and put money in these accounts, the more time they have to grow! Make sure you know what options you have and what you are eligible for by talking to a financial advisor!
About The Debt Free Nurse
Allie Hall is a PICU nurse who was tired of living paycheck to paycheck and having to work overtime to pay her bills. She started learning about personal finance, but never found a method that worked for her until she created her own! After she found a method that worked, she was able to pay off 46k of student loan debt in 18 months while saving 10K for her wedding. She has been student loan and credit card debt free since 2019! Now she teaches nurses how to align their spending with their values and feel confident with their finances so they can pay off debt and save money without sacrificing what they love through a money course and money mentorship program! Keep up with her on her blog and Instagram.
Want to start making more money as a travel nurse so you can achieve your financial goals? Check out Fusion Marketplace’s high-paying jobs for travel nurses and allied health professionals. Take a step toward reaching your money goals and apply for a healthcare travel job today!