Comparing the Travel Nursing Job Market Pre and Post Pandemic

A pandemic that flipped the world of healthcare upside down and taught workers how to be agile, determined and patient is now taking a toll on travel healthcare workers everywhere and changing the industry perspective. 


Travel nurses find themselves asking, where do we go from here? What does the future of travel healthcare look like for us? Well, let’s dive into the key differences between pre-pandemic, post-pandemic and how this has affected the current travel market.

What did we see Pre-Pandemic?

Pre-pandemic, we saw healthcare workers freely stepping in to fill voids nationwide where hospitals and facilities were short-staffed. Healthcare workers wanted to explore different locations across the country and expand their resumes in unique ways.


Healthcare workers didn’t want to be confined to one hospital or facility; They wanted first-hand experience working in different areas and gaining new experiences. Travel nurses also brought relief to staff nurses that were experiencing career burnout and were longing for a change of pace. Luckily for them, the word of travel nursing began to spread and opened the doors to new, unexpected and adventurous opportunities.


The opportunity to be a travel nurse filled their cup with new experiences and gave them a new perspective on healthcare and how every facility, hospital and team runs differently.

Looking for your next gig? Search our available jobs here!

What happened Post-Pandemic?

Post-pandemic had shaped up to present itself with significant challenges and sacrifices for healthcare workers across the globe. Not only were travelers stepping into crisis healthcare positions and tending to extremely ill patients, but they also had to learn the policies and procedures that come along with frequently floating to different units and effectively collaborating with new co-workers they may have never met.


Healthcare workers began taking on duties during the pandemic that required more time and energy than they’ve ever experienced before. When hospitals canceled visitor policies, nurses nurtured and cared for patients like their own family members. Healthcare professionals began going out of their way and sacrificing their own health and mental wellness to put their patients’ needs before their own.


The pandemic completely changed the scope of travel healthcare and the expectations of travel nurses coming in to help calm the chaos.  It makes sense when considering all that has changed in hospitals and facilities and why healthcare workers are now commonly, and accurately, called “heroes” across society. 

What does this mean for the future of travel healthcare?

Luckily for avid travel nurses and our Axis Rock Star travelers, the travel industry isn’t going anywhere. You will still be able to travel the country and explore new destinations. Healthcare workers will always need to fill the temporary needs of positions within hospitals and facilities across the nation. In fact, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the monthly number of vacancies for travel nurses is expected to go over 7%, against the overall 4% job growth by 2028.


Are you going to become a travel nurse? The current challenges that you must understand when diving into the traveling process include the following:

  • Be mindful of communication when collaborating with new co-workers in a new work environment.
  • Having an understanding of ever-changing patient and floor ratios.
  • Taking on additional duties such as training and bringing newcomers up to speed.
  • There may continue to be fluctuations in the coming months with census, rates, job market conditions and availability of options.


The pandemic taught travel healthcare workers how to be resilient and true advocates for their patients and themselves. Travelers bring a unique skillset everywhere they go and are always looking for ways to bring new meaning to a workplace.


Check out location-specific tips in our Live Like a Local series!

Axis Medical Staffing: Supporting You In Your Next Travel Nursing Position

Want to connect with a recruiter? Apply today!

  • Max. file size: 50 MB.