Top 7 Job Markets Around the World for Travel Nurses


This is a partnered guest post.

Global shortages in skilled nursing staff have made being a nurse one of the most easily transitioned jobs in the world, and travel nursing is especially in demand. With so many diverse options available, it can be difficult to choose what location would be the best for you to work in overseas. This post will explore seven of the best places to look for overseas nursing work, and why.


California, USA

While California may not be an exotic locale to some, it is worth a look at travel nursing jobs in the Golden State before jetting off abroad. There are many openings in diverse cities in California every year, and the pay is great, especially if you have a masters degree in healthcare management. Consider a position that puts you by the beach, in Hollywood or near one of the state’s amazing national and state parks.

Saudi Arabia

Many nurses choose to work in Saudi Arabia or other Middle Eastern countries because of the great pay and benefits. According to some nurses, the benefits alone make these jobs sweet choices. Nurses report receiving airfare reimbursements, long holidays and working in state-of-the-art facilities. Additionally, many hospitals in the Middle East require all medical staff to speak English on the job, so while English isn’t spoken on the street, American nurses’ language skills are valued in the hospital. Two-year commitments are normal with a vacation to visit home scheduled between the first and second years.


See the vast deserts and bountiful beaches of Australia by choosing to work Down Under. As in all other English-speaking countries, American nurses are welcomed. Additionally, nurses who have earned their registration in the United States qualify for Australia’s Competency Based Assessment Program, making the visa and employment process quicker and faster. Most jobs will require a two-year commitment.

The United Kingdom

The UK has a large nursing shortage and is looking for nurses from abroad, but the requirements for working here are a little stricter than in other countries. Nurses will need to register with the government’s Nursing and Midwifery Council to get a license, which might take some time. Of course, for the UK and any other countries that require a local license, you’ll need your US registration to be up-to-date. Many nurses who would like to travel in Europe on their days off choose to work in the UK.

Alaska, USA

Alaskan institutions are looking to bring in staff for many career fields, because the local population is relatively small while the demand for nurses and other skilled workers is high. Working in Alaska, unlike some of the other places mentioned here, won’t require a visa or other government paperwork, but you will have to be prepared for those long, cold winters.


If you are worried about traveling abroad for the first time, then Canada might be a good way to ease in to the international travel-nursing lifestyle. While not so different culturally from the USA, Canada is a vast and interesting place to explore, with a high standard of health care services. Outdoorsy types will especially enjoy Canada’s year-round recreational opportunities.

Cruise Ships, Worldwide

If there are so many places you want to go in your career as a travel nurse that you can’t possibly pick just one, you might apply for positions as a nurse on a cruise ship. Tend to passengers on board and rotate shifts with other nurses for shore leave while having full access to the ship’s amenities. However, pay packages, contract lengths and duty expectations vary widely between cruise lines, so if you choose this option, you’d be wise to do plenty of research before packing up.

Nurses return from abroad with a greater understanding of global health care issues and a better ability to help people in their own communities. Working abroad looks good on job or higher-education program applications as well.


About the Author: Jamaica R. Loder, R.N. has been a nurse traveler in the U.S. and abroad for six years, having worked in nursing in her home city of Chicago for fifteen years before that. Tending to Saudi schoolchildren, Chilean wine growers and Florida retirees have made her career at home and abroad interesting and dynamic.



I'm a mother of 2 who likes to get involved in too much! Besides writing here I started a non-profit, I'm on the PTO board, very active in my community and volunteer in the school. I enjoy music, reading, cooking, traveling and spending time with my family. We just adopted our 3rd cat and love them all!

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  1. There is a huge cutback on nurses in NYC since they have closed a bunch of hospitals

  2. I think traveling as a nurse would be such a great experience.

  3. Very interesting!

  4. Wow, being a nurse on a cruise ship sounds cool.

  5. Nice!

  6. I had no idea there were nurses who travel for work!

  7. I am a nurse and almost got into travel nursing before my kids.

  8. This is so cool that nurses actually travel to help others. Especially in third world countries.

  9. That’s awesome there are so many opportunities for them

  10. It’d be so cool to be able to work in different areas of the World.

  11. Very interesting! I love that Canada made the list 🙂

  12. I always wanted to be a nurse.. but I’m squeamish!

  13. I think almost everyone of my sister’s in-laws are nurses here in the SF Bay Area.

  14. Interesting post

  15. It would be so fun to work around the world!

  16. If I could do anything over, it would be to have gone through nursing school. I’m too old now to start over but what a great profession and what an opportunity for travel!