Life as a traveling CT Tech is an incredibly exciting experience — not to mention profitable. If you love to travel and love meeting new people, then this could be the perfect way to take your career to the next level.
Just like any other job, there’ll be both highs and lows, but by doing your research and knowing what to expect, you’ll be prepared for the good and the bad.
Here are 3 things you should know before diving in.
1. You can wipe out your college debt fast
Traveling CT is an in-demand field, and part of being in an in-demand field means demanding beaucoup bucks on every job you take.
Traveling techs across the industry make more money than their in-house counterparts, and the wages for in-house techs are nothing to scoff at. Travelers also receive excellent health insurance benefits and retirement contributions.
But the main reason this job can make your student loans disappear is the reduced cost of living expenses, which are almost entirely covered by the hospital and are independant from your salary.
This means travel reimbursements, paid living accommodations, or tax-free stipends for housing that you can spend — or save — as much as you please.
There is no set amount for living stipends — and the number will vary with each job — but there are upper and lower limits set by the Government Services Administration, so you’ll never have to worry about being short-changed.
Techs who know they’ll be on the road for a while often choose to buy an RV for their travels. With the monthly allowance, you can pay off the balance relatively quickly, or you can use the leftover money each month to pay down your student debt.
Once payments are over, you’ll have a considerable asset to your name, and you won’t have to pay another dime for housing as a travel tech.
2. Just Because the Pay is Higher than Normal Doesn’t Mean You Should Automatically Take it
A lot of times when people are starting out with their travel work, they will be shocked at how much money they can make.
If you’ve spent the last few years making $2,100 every two weeks, seeing an offer for $1,700 per week may be such a welcome surprise that you’re signing on the dotted line before ever considering it may be lower than you’re worth.
More money is almost always a good thing, but once you realize that all of your travel contracts will be more lucrative than what you’re used to, it’ll be easier to start thinking about a contract’s value against other travel contracts, not just your former in-house work.
Don’t let the initial excitement cause you to leave money on the table. Shop around, talk to other travel techs, and get a sense of what poor, average, and high rates are for your experience level.
The last thing you want is to get into a habit of undervaluing yourself. Knowing your worth and being principled enough to stick to it will help guarantee this profession is more than just a phase for you.
3. You’ll Be Alone Sometimes, But That Doesn’t Mean You’ll Be Lonely
Unless you’re traveling with your family, life on the road can sometimes feel solitary. Getting used to new cities takes time. Making new friends isn’t always a walk in the park.
But, lucky for you, hospitals are filled with amazing people. You and every single one of your co-workers have dedicated your lives to helping people in need, and there’s a great chance you will have far more in common than just your profession.
You’ll be doing yourself and your colleagues a disservice if you only choose to see them during working hours. Meeting new people can be intimidating, but it’s all part of the larger adventure.
You can also meet people outside of work just by getting out and exploring the city you’ll be in for the next few months.
Every city, no matter the size, has some claim to fame. Whether it be the world’s biggest loom, a beautiful modern art museum, or an amazing bar scene, give yourself the opportunity to explore every place you go.
Even if you feel like it’s basic, touristy stuff, you’re still putting yourself in a position to meet new people along the way.
You can always just invite your co-workers on adventures with you. Getting in the habit of asking your colleagues to join you when you go out will ensure you develop meaningful relationships that last far longer than your contract.
Be fanatic about new experiences and meeting new people. Your future self — and photo album — will thank you for it later.
Looking for an Assignment? Let’s Talk
If you’re looking for your first CT tech travel assignment — or if you’re looking for your next assignment — we’re here to help.