Packing is the worst. You have to figure out what you need, where you'll put it and how to fit it all into the least amount of luggage possible. If you're going on a travel nurse assignment you need to figure out how many seasons to pack for and what other household necessities you’ll need to bring. Will you be flying with a few bags, or driving with several? How can you bring all the necessary items without overloading yourself? How will you find the time to get everything packed?
First, take a breath. This stage of travel is stressful for just about everyone. Once you get into the groove of assignments, you'll be packing like a pro, but in the meantime you have to take the first step. So let's go!
In order to keep your packing manageable, start early. Make yourself a list of everything you'll need – definitely call ahead to your housing to figure out what's already there for you. Make some time every day to do some packing. Pack inessential stuff first, like anything you can live without for a little while or don't use daily but will still need with you. If you'd like to bring books or entertainment, pack it now, and keep it light. Save the essentials for carryon bags you can keep within easy reach. It's not a bad idea to pack at least a few pairs of clothes with your essentials or any musts for work just in case something gets lost on the way.
Don't forget to start saving anything that you can use to pack. If you have boxes, don't just toss them out... save them so you can use them to store things! If you know the address of where you'll be staying, mail stuff ahead so you don't have to carry it with you. Additionally, trash bags are gold. They're cheap and easy to stuff soft stuff into quickly! Wouldn't recommend using them for anything you don't want wrinkled, but they'll save you from buying moving boxes or extra luggage (depending on how you are traveling of course!).
Looking to pack extra blankets? Good idea, but don't pack them on their own. Use them as padding between other items. If you're packing anything fragile or that will move around a lot, wrap it up in a blanket or stick towels between your stuff.
Try looking up videos on how to pack light or get the most out of a small space. There are lots of tricks, such as rolling clothes instead of packing them folded. Remember, no matter where you end up, you'll still have some of the comforts of home. Lastly, don’t forget to keep all of your packing pieces stored while on assignment, if you are planning on a new assignment in a new town you’ll already have your systems down and supplies ready. Happy travels!