Industry Trends & Insights

Top Summer Jobs for Travel Nursing in 2022 | Trusted Health

The Trusted Team
July 19, 2022
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Summer time allows travel nurses to tie together two things they love - nursing and travel to great destinations. Whether you are interested in finding a beachy locale, heading to the mountains, or something else, Trusted has many options for travelers to choose from. Read on to learn more about which cities and specialties are seeing the most interest, and then jump in to apply for your best summer vibes.

The Highest Paying Travel Nurse Specialties

There are quite a few factors that go into determining a facility’s pay package, but in general the higher rates come into play with harder to fill positions, an unexpected census increase, to cover regular staff out on personal leave, due to the opening of a new unit or facility, or to cover an EMR change or upgrade. While the industry has recently seen rates go down overall from the Covid surges of the past two years, there are still plenty of great pay packages available.

The specialties that are constantly in demand require specialized skill sets and certifications, and they tend to be the highest paying ones.  Here are a few specialties that are trending toward the highest pay this summer.

Operating Room

OR nurses work in a variety of settings in the operating room. They care for patients before, during, and after surgical and medical procedures. They ensure the operating room is set up correctly and proper sterile procedures are followed. They also are a valuable resource for families and provide support and updates while their loved ones are receiving care. 

Intensive Care Unit 

ICU nurses are highly skilled nurses that care for critically ill, complex patients in a variety of settings. Also known as Critical Care Nurses, this specialty closely monitors patients with life-threatening conditions and serves as an essential member of a team of specialists working together to stabilize patients and provide support for families. 

Emergency Room

Emergency Room Nurses (Also known as ER, ECU, or ED) are the first line of care for many patients who present with acute or life threatening illnesses and accidents. Emergency Room Nurses assess, triage, and care for patients, then quickly develop a care plan and work with other specialties to assist patients in receiving the urgent care they need.


Medical/Surgical nurses provide care for patients with all types of illnesses, conditions, and injuries. They are kind of the “jack of all trades” in nursing. Telemetry nurses are Medical/Surgical Nurses who care for patients with cardiac conditions who need to be monitored with telemetry during their hospital stay. 

Labor & Delivery

Labor & Delivery nurses provide care and support for pregnant women, newborns, and their families. They care for women during labor, delivery, and postpartum. This specialty involves a great deal of education and support for new families and women's health in general. 

Learn more about nursing specialties:
👉 Trusted Nursing Specialty Guide
👉 Choosing a Travel Nurse Specialty

The Best Paying States and Locations

Jobs can, and do, vary on almost a daily basis and if Covid has taught us nothing else, it has shown how unpredictable and how quickly things can change! With that said, here are some of the current hot locations this summer for higher paying contracts. 


  • San Francisco
  • San Diego
  • Bakersfield
  • Oakland
  • Los Angeles

New York

  • New York City
  • Albany
  • Watertown
  • Sleepy Hollow 


  • Hershey
  • Philadelphia
  • Harrisburg
  • Scranton
  • Danville 


  • Boston
  • Worcester
  •  Lawrence


  • Tacoma
  • Spokane
  • Auburn
  • Puyallup

Tips to Find, and Land a Hot Job

Be prepared

It goes without saying that the highest paying jobs in the most desired locations also usually have the most competition. These jobs can go quickly, sometimes opening and closing within only a few days. Having your profile completed ahead of time puts you in the best position to get submitted as soon as you see a position you are interested in open up. 

Be flexible

Flexibility goes a long way when trying to land a hot job. The more flexible you can be, the more opportunities you can open up for yourself. Everyone has their own priorities and their own set of non-negotiables, but in general the more flexible you can be in areas like location, shift, start/end dates, weekends, and floating, the more you can put yourself in a better position to stand out among the competition. 

Be up-to-date on your licensing

Some of the highest paying positions are in states that are not (yet!) part of the compact licensing. If you know you are interested in working in one of these states, the sooner you can get your license application in the better. Many facilities won’t even accept submittals from nurses unless they hold an active license in the state they are applying to. While some states have a fairly quick licensing process, others such as California can take much longer. IYou can check out all the requirements, costs, and approximate timelines for state licenses in Trusted’s Licensure Guide.

Travel Resources

Of course, travel nursing isn’t just about finding the right contract. Researching the facility, the local area, finding housing, and becoming familiar with local transportation options are just some of the things you need to consider when accepting a contract. Trusted have a plethora of resources available to help, from housing partnerships to guides on what credentials and requirements you might need to travel. We would also love to have you join our Facebook Group, The Modern Nurse, and join the discussions in our Community Forum which you can access right from your profile! 

Looking for a travel job? Create a free profile on Trusted and set ultra-specific preferences to make sure you’re only getting matched with jobs you’re interested in. 

  1. Create a free profile: Your Trusted profile is all you need to get matched with jobs and apply to opportunities.
  2. Find matches: View available opportunities in real-time with contract details and pay breakdowns upfront.
  3. Apply in one click: Simply click “Request Interview” when you find a job you like, and we’ll take it from there.

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