Becoming a travel nurse can provide great flexibility. The ability to explore a new part of the country and then pick up and find someplace else. But with all the options, there are a lot of factors in play to select the right option for you. Before you take your next assignment, check out these states with high travel nurse demand. Things like pay, competition from other nurses, and state laws all go into figuring out their travel nurse demand. Here’s a list of our top 5 states with high travel nurse demand when considering our next assignment.


No shocker here right off the bat. Due to the size in population and the law requiring a specific nurse-to-patient ratio, there is always going to be a high demand for travel nurses in California. The high demand does come with a high salary. Per recently-released data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, registered nurses in the Golden State earn $100,000 a year on average, more than their counterparts anywhere else in the country. The average hourly wage for registered nurses in California is $48.68 an hour, the 2015 data shows.


Another state that probably doesn’t surprise anyone. While the annual salary for Texas falls under that of California, there is still a high demand for travel nurses in Texas. However, with plenty of metropolitan cities and exciting tourist destination, that means big opportunity in the Lone Star State.


Florida is in need of a few good nurses. According to the Florida Center for Nursing, there is an increase of nearly 30% in vacant RN positions since 2013 in Florida. Compounding that is the increase in new nursing positions that are expected to be created in the upcoming years. The reason for this is both national and at the state level. Nationally, hospitals across the country have been under pressure to hire more nurses since the Affordable Care Act extended health insurance coverage to millions of Americans. At the state level, Florida has 19% of its population over the age of 65, the highest in the country. Experts say the share of senior citizens will increase as more Baby Boomers hit retirement.


A survey conducted by the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulations suggests the state may soon face a shortage of registered nurses as more and more baby boomers retire. In the survey, it states that one-third of registered nurses 55 and older said they intend to retire within the next five years. Nursing specialists are lacking in the number of registered nurses from younger generations.


Colorado ranked 9th in the highest increase in population from 2015 to 2016. While the nation prepares for a possible nursing shortage, at least one report predicts Colorado will be short about 17,000 licensed practical and registered nurses by the year 2025. Current data shows that Colorado ranks in the bottom 5 of states with the oldest population, but given the increase in new residents, it is clear to see that there will be a travel nurse need.

Host Healthcare offers many travel nursing benefits including competitive pay, tax-free tuition reimbursement, and mentorship for travel therapists. If you are searching for travel nursing jobs in Florida, California, Texas, Colorado or Illinois, browse through our extensive list of travel nursing jobs or call one of our professional recruiters at (800) 585-1299.