Capitol building with statue and water view in Washington DC.
Travel Nursing January 11, 2023

By AMH Writing Team

The Travel Nurse's Guide to Washington D.C.

Why D.C.?

Famous for its monuments, museums, and rich history, Washington, D.C. is also a mecca for travel nurses. The Capital of the U.S. is well-known for its robust medical community and thriving healthcare scene with multiple award-winning hospitals, academic facilities, and medical centers. When you’re not helping patients, you can spend your days off exploring all “The District” has to offer. Picture yourself meandering through rows of the city’s famed cherry blossom trees and spending afternoons visiting all the historical monuments you grew up reading about. All of this and more could be your reality as a travel nurse on assignment in D.C.!

Lifestyle Benefits

Bordered by Maryland and Virginia, D.C. is the heart of the action. The city is extremely easy to navigate thanks to its efficient metro system and it’s numeric and alphabetized streets. There are countless benefits to living and working in D.C., and the ability to earn excellent compensation as a travel nurse is certainly on that list. Travel nursing is an exciting way to make great money and benefit from countless other perks such as:

  • The ability to choose when and where you want to work - Washington D.C. is home to over 15 hospitals and medical centers making this a great destination for travel nurses. More facilities mean more options for
    selecting your next assignment! Prove yourself, and you may find that your facility asks you to extend your contract. You also can plan your assignments around your next vacation. Consider a back-to-back assignment
    in D.C. and take some time off in between each contract to discover all that the area has to offer.
  • Travel locally to other areas near D.C. - Another perk to D.C.’s central location is the ability to travel locally to other cities and states when based in the area. If you’re wrapping up a contract, have your recruiter check the area to see if there are any assignments in nearby areas such as Bethesda, Arlington, or Alexandria. If the new contract is within a commutable distance, you may even be able to stay in your same housing!
  • Plenty of activities and things to do on your days off - D.C. is teeming with countless things to do and see when you aren’t working a shift and using your clinical skills and knowledge as a travel nurse. From world-renowned museums and monuments, historical hotspots and plenty of shops and restaurants to explore, there’s no shortage of fun to be had on your next assignment.
  • Great neighborhoods to live in - Whether you select the free, company-paid hosting provided by American Mobile or you choose to leverage the housing stipend, D.C. has a variety of neighborhoods to choose from-- each with their own unique “personality.” You can choose from high-rise living downtown or choose from a selection of vibrantly colored townhomes in Georgetown.
  • Enjoy a great network of walking and biking trails - Although the metro will have you covered, sometimes there is nothing like exploring a new city by bike or foot. D.C. has over 60 miles of designated biking trails as well as tons of places to walk, jog and run.

At American Mobile, the housing team is readily available to find every travel nurse a home where they will feel safe and comfortable during any travel nurse assignment, and we offer free, company-paid housing. The other option is to utilize the generous housing stipend, and to find your own D.C. housing. Live like a local in D.C. by working hard and then enjoying the lifestyle of your choice!

Facilities

Travel nursing allows nurses to expand their skills, experience, and clinical knowledge by working in some of the nation’s top healthcare facilities and learning from talented nursing colleagues, physicians, therapists, and other peers.
D.C. has always been a location that attracts talented nurses and clinicians from all over the U.S. The area’s diverse and thriving healthcare scene allows travel nurses to choose from a variety of different types of assignments and contracts.
American Mobile typically has travel nurse job openings in the following types of facilities:

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If you’re a nurse who has been working in smaller regional or rural healthcare facilities, you may want to consider expanding your practice scope by taking a travel nurse assignment at a large teaching hospital or magnet facility. The amazing thing about traveling is you can choose the type of facility you want to work in, which opens the doors to tremendous learning and growth opportunities.
In addition to selecting assignments based on the type of facility, travel nurses can also search for assignments by specialty, and D.C. features a wide variety of options including L&D, ER, ICU, Pediatrics, Oncology, and Med-Surg just to name a few. Nurses who have experience in multiple specialties can also choose assignments where they “float” to several different units throughout the course of the contract.

Things to do

Since you’ll be saving money on living expenses and enjoying competitive compensation, travel nurses can definitely enjoy an elevated lifestyle. Spend your day off by playing tourist and exploring one of the many activities and attractions we’ve rounded up on this list of suggestions:

1. The Lincoln Memorial

This monument is quintessential D.C. The jaw-dropping marble statue of Abraham Lincoln - our nation’s 16th president -- is a site that must be seen firsthand. Lincoln is surrounded by 36 Doric columns, one for each state at the time of his death, and the full text of the Gettysburg Address can be found inscribed on the interior walls.

2. Smithsonian Museums

Just when you thought you’ve visited them all, chances are there’s still one to discover. Collectively known as “the Smithsonian Institution,” the world-renowned museum and research complex consists of 17 museums and galleries in Washington, D.C., including the National Zoo. See if you can check all of them off your list on your next assignment!

3. The White House

A visit to D.C. wouldn’t be complete without seeing The White House. You can snap a photo from outside the gates or elect to take a self-guided tour. Public tour requests are scheduled on a first come, first served basis, and must be submitted through a Member of Congress and their Congressional Tour Coordinator.

4. U.S. Capitol

The iconic Capitol building is the official meeting place for United States Congress and the seat of the legislative branch of the U.S. federal government. The beautiful white dome can be seen from miles away and its distinctive location at the Eastern end of the National Mall makes it the crown jewel of The District. It’s also super cool to see the exact place where our country’s laws are debated and established. 

5. Vietnam Veterans Memorial 

Dedicated in the early ‘90s, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial pays tribute to the men and women who served during the Vietnam era. It also lists the 58,318 Americans who gave their lives in service to their country and there’s a separate memorial that acknowledges the more than 265,000 women who served during the war.

6. Library of Congress

The de facto national library of the U.S., the Library of Congress, is a must-see for all you travel nurse bibliophiles out there. It’s used as a research arm for Congress, and it also boasts the title of the largest library in the world with more than 173 million items. Founded in 1800, it’s the oldest federal cultural institution in the nation. Visitors can spend hours perusing the shelves or attending one of the many events and speaker series held there.

7. Jefferson Memorial

Located on the National Mall, the Jefferson Memorial is dedicated to the nation’s 3rd president and author of the Declaration of Independence. The open-air, white columned structure is adorned with a white dome and includes an impressive 19-foot bronze statue of Jefferson. Take a moment to find the etching on the walls that includes one of his most famous lines: "We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights, among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness."

8. Tidal Basin

This man-made reservoir located between the Potomac River and the Washington Channel is known for the annual National Cherry Blossom Festival that takes place each spring. If you happen to be on assignment during this time, you’re in luck -- the Japanese flowering trees are stunning. If you are there during a different time of year, it’s still worth a visit due to its serene walking path and gorgeous sunsets

9. National Zoological Park

Part of the Smithsonian family, the National Zoological Park is an impressive collection of more than 2,700 animals representing more than 390 species. What’s more? The park is open 364 days a year and admission is free!

10. Union Market District

So much more than a food hall or run-of-the-mill marketplace, the Union Market District is a mecca for shoppers, diners, and connoisseurs of fun. This area hosts over 35 independent merchants that are selling everything from empanadas to authentic lobster rolls. Stay until sunset to enjoy one of D.C.’s largest rooftops complete with 360-degree views of the city.

11. The Pentagon

Home to the United States Department of Defense and boasting the title of the World’s Largest Office Building, this unique architectural feat is worth a visit. Be sure to take a guided tour -- they are available on a limited basis for U.S. citizens. Make sure you register at least two weeks in advance and it’s also important to note that attendees require clearance to enter the Pentagon by the Pentagon Forces Protection Agency. (Pretty cool if you ask us!) The tour will also include a stop at the Pentagon memorial constructed for the victims of 9/11.

12. Potomac River

Forming a portion of the borders between Maryland and Washington, D.C. on one bank and West Virginia and Virginia on the other, lies the wide and mighty Potomac River. There are plenty of ways to explore the Potomac including kayaking, stand-up paddle boarding (SUP), sailing, and boating. You can choose from a sunset dinner cruise, private boat rentals, and sightseeing cruises.

Why work for American Mobile?

As the nation’s top travel nursing agency, American Mobile is proud to offer an incredible array of well-paying travel nurse jobs, including many in Washington D.C. We’re also proud of our dedicated staff of recruiters, our clinical experts and others who support travelers, the excellent benefits, and all the other opportunities that we can offer to travelers.

Here are a few key reasons to consider signing on with American Mobile:

  • We make it easy for you. We designed the AMN Passport app to make it easy to search for jobs and book assignments. You can also use the app to manage your assignments.
  • You’ll get access to our database of travel nursing jobs. We have the largest, most comprehensive database of nursing jobs in the industry, including exclusive contracts with a number of leading healthcare organizations, including prestigious magnet hospitals.
  • We offer full-time support. Our team wants you to succeed, so we offer support and make sure you get everything that you need. Your recruiter is always available to talk with you about current or future assignments. We also have dedicated team members to answer questions and troubleshoot problems if you have need help with housing, credentialing, or payroll, too.
  • We offer round-the-clock clinical support. If you run into a question about a clinical matter on the job, you can call our clinical team and receive urgent assistance at any time of day or night.
  • We offer licensure assistance. If you’ve worked in the D.C. area or any other state that belongs to the Enhanced Nursing Licensure Compact (eNLC), you may not need that assistance. But if you do need help getting licensed to practice in the D.C. area, we are here to help you with that. We’ll make sure you’re fully licensed and ready to go when it’s time to start your assignment.

American Mobile also offers the best benefits in the travel nursing industry.

  • Premium health benefits. Perhaps more important than ever before, our health benefits will give you the peace of mind to know that you have access to healthcare when you need it, too. Our options include PPO and HMO health benefits, as well as life insurance, vision insurance, and disability insurance – for you and your family. Plus, you don’t have to wait a month or three for these benefits to kick in. Coverage starts on day one.
  • Retirement savings. American Mobile offers a generous 401(k) matching program that will help you save money for your retirement (when you can travel even more!)
  • Free continuing education. Nursing leaders will tell you that lifelong learning is a hallmark of the nursing profession. To make it easier for you to stay up-to-date on the latest evidence-based research and developments in your profession, we offer free continuing education unit (CEU) courses.

Interested in working in Washington D.C.?

Contact an American Mobile recruiter to start the application process or visit our job search page to find an assignment that’s a great fit for you!

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