Travel Nursing 101 – Let’s Talk Certifications!

Travel Nursing 101: Let’s Talk Certifications!

Certifications are really quite important if you are considering entering the field of travel nursing. While most staff nurses and allied health care professionals are lucky enough to attend continued education with the support and guidance of their employer, travel nurses do not really have these same opportunities and must pursue these efforts independently.

Because you do not have the guidance of an employer, as a travel nurse, you must take your own education and career advancement in your own hands. This is where the importance of medical certifications come in! Investing in these courses helps travel nurses expand their knowledge base, advance their careers and aids in their application standing out amongst the crowd.

To get you started on exploring certifications and how they may help you, we have provided some information on required and highly recommended certifications for travel nurses.

General Certifications

While we will get into more specified recommended certifications, it is important for all travel nurses to heavily consider being BLS (Basic Life Support) and ACLS (Advanced Cardiac Life Support) certified. The majority of positions available to travel nurses will require these two basic certifications. We strongly suggest obtaining these certifications before you begin to start looking for a travel nursing position. Being BLS and ACLS certified beforehand will help streamline the process and show potential employers that you are responsible and prepared.

HIghly Recommended Certifications

As we mentioned in the introduction, certifications are a great way to stand apart from your competitors. Within the medical field, there are some certifications within specialties that, while not required, are heavily advised and will help guarantee that your application moves to the top of the pile.

Below we have some of the most common medical facility departments/specialities and their recommended certifications.

Department/SpecialtyRecommended Certifications
Registered NurseEKG IV PICC
Emergency RoomTNCC Trauma Nurse Core Course NIHSS – Stroke Certification PALS Pediatric Advanced Life Support
Intensive Care UnitCCRN Critical Care Registered Nurse (Adult, Pediatric and Neonatal) NIHSS – Stroke Certification TNCC Trauma Nurse Core Course
MED-SURGACLS Advanced Cardiac Life Support NIHSS – Stroke Certification
ORsPALS Pediatric Advanced Life Support NIHSS – Stroke Certification
PACUPALS Pediatric Advanced Life Support NIHSS – Stroke Certification

For more information, please check out our resources: and,

While this chart is informative, it just scratches the surface of the certifications that are available for travel nurses.  There are all kinds of certifications that travel nurses can get to invest in the advancement of their career. As always, if you are not sure how or where to start with certifications or anything else, we are here for you. Any of our trained, professional recruiters will be happy to point you in the right direction!

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