Travel Career Resources

Holiday Pay for Travel Nurses and Allied Health Pros

Lindsey Gram, RN
October 12, 2023
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The holidays are coming up quickly! Are you a nurse or allied health professional who is currently traveling or thinking about traveling? Are you wondering- do travel nurses have to work the holidays? And do travel nurses even get holiday pay?

In this post, we'll go over how holiday pay works for travelers. You'll want to know this stuff– it can be VERY different from what you've experienced as a staff nurse. 

Keep reading to find out what your travel nurse holiday pay options are. We’ll go over a few scenarios, discuss how holiday pay works at Trusted Health, and talk about the pros and cons of working holidays. The holidays will be here before you know it– get ready!

Do Travel Nurses Get Holiday Pay? What About Allied Health Professionals? 

The honest answer is- it depends. Whether or not you will receive holiday pay while working as a travel nurse or allied health professional varies from facility to facility. 

  • Hospitals and health systems are not required to pay travel nurses or healthcare professionals holiday rates. 
  • Some hospitals and facilities pay their travelers holiday pay, and some do not. 
  • Whether or not you will receive holiday pay as a travel nurse or allied professional should be clearly stated in your contract. 
  • If it isn’t, ask your Nurse Advocate to clarify this with the facility– make sure you’re clear on what’s in your contract so both parties are aware of expectations and there are no surprises. 

Want more information? The Fair Labor Standards Act, or FLSA, further explains employers' legal responsibility regarding holiday and overtime pay. 

What is holiday pay?  

A holiday pay rate is typically 1.5 times your hourly wage, or “time and a half.” This can vary between facilities and should be defined in your contract. Sensing a theme here? Always read and be familiar with your contract, and get any questions answered before signing! 

Your Nurse Advocate will be able to assist with this, and the good news- the holiday rate will always be 1.5x your regular rate when you travel with Trusted, no matter what your facility pays their staff! 

Holidays eligible for a holiday rate when you work with Trusted are dependent on your facility and will always be listed in your contract.

One important thing to remember is that agencies often default to facility policy on holiday pay.  Each facility may define what specific hours are eligible for a holiday rate differently. For example, if you work the night shift the night before Labor Day– that 12-hour shift could be eligible for holiday pay. Nightshift on Labor Day itself may not.  

Here at Trusted, though, we keep things super simple - keep reading to learn more about our holiday pay structure!

Trusted Health Holiday Pay

At Trusted Health, we understand that holiday pay and hours as a travel nurse or travel allied health professional can often be confusing and frustrating. But there’s good news– when you travel with Trusted Health, the answer to holiday pay is super straightforward! 

Travel nurses and allied health professionals will receive holiday pay for the holidays listed in your contract. That way you will always know which holidays will be eligible for holiday pay ahead of time!

You can take a closer look at our holiday policy here. Our full policy dives further into our defined holidays, holiday hours, holiday time tracking, guaranteed hours, call-back hours, and sick time

Do Travel Nurses Have to Work Holidays? What about Allied Pros? 

Nope! One of the best things about being a travel nurse is that if you do not want to work over the holidays, you have the freedom and flexibility not to! The same goes for all allied health travelers. If being home for the holidays is important to you, you can choose to work a contract that ends before the holidays and then not begin another contract until afterward. 

If your contract does fall over the holidays, the answer is maybe. Each facility varies in whether or not they require their travelers to work holidays. 

  • Some facilities will expect you to work all holidays.
  • Some will not have you work any.
  • Others may have you work some, but not all.

Some facilities will place specific holiday requirements within the contract, for example, “traveler must work 2 of 3 holidays” or “holidays as needed,” but if you’re ever in doubt, you should check in with both your manager at the facility, as well as your Nurse Advocate at Trusted, to ensure everyone is on the same page. 

If you are working a contract over the holidays and having this time off is important, you can ask for this time off before signing your contract. The facility does not have to approve this request, but asking before your contract is signed is a more proactive way to get what you want versus hoping for the best. If your facility agrees to give you specific dates off over the holidays, ensure this is included in your contract.  

Should I Work the Holidays or Not? 

That choice can only be made by you, and the answer differs for each travel professional. There are pros and cons to each decision– let’s take a look at them!

Infographic illustrating the benefits and drawbacks of working holidays in the medical field. Pros include potential for more pay, enjoying company in a new location, a relaxing work atmosphere, and the rewarding experience. Cons include missing out on certain traditions, time away from family, and varying work paces during holiday seasons.
Pros and Cons of Working Holidays as a Travel Nurse or Allied Health Professional

Travel Pro Holiday Pay– The Bottom Line

One of the best things about being a traveling health professional is that you have more freedom and autonomy than a staff nurse when deciding if you want to work the holidays. Check your contracts to ensure you fully understand what your facility offers regarding holiday pay, and be sure to check in with your agency on their policies too.

Trusted’s Nurse Advocates are always here to answer any questions that may arise. We value your hard work and appreciate you. Whether you spend them at work or not, Happy Holidays from Trusted Health!

Travel Holiday Pay F.A.Q.'s

Do travel nurses get holiday pay?

It depends. At Trusted Health, the answer is yes, for all qualifying holidays. Other travel agencies do not guarantee this- and in that situation, the answer varies with each facility. 

Do allied health professionals get holiday pay?

Again, it depends! At Trusted Health, yes- we treat all travel health professionals equally. Not all travel agencies guarantee holiday pay.    

Do I have to work the holidays as a traveler?

No! You can choose not to work contracts that fall over the holidays. If you do work over the holidays, you can ask for specific dates off, but this is not guaranteed. 

How does holiday pay for travelers work?

This depends on the facility and travel agency. You can click here to view Trusted Health’s holiday policy.

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