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Travel Nursing in Texas

To say that there’s a lot to see in Texas would be an understatement. You have the bayou along the Mississippi River and the Gulf of Mexico, the Great Plains in the panhandle, the Chihuahuan Desert in the west, and the mountains near the Rio Grande.

Texas has everything, including a lot of top-notch, populous cities for travel nurses to find work.

Texas is Part of the NLC

You can’t have a state as large and as populous as Texas without it being a part of the Nurse Licensure Compact—or NLC. The NLC works as a single nursing license for 24 states. If you have a nursing license in one of these states, you have a license for the other 23—and counting.

You can visit the NLC’s homepage at

The Texas Board of Nursing has its own page too

Or you can contact them directly:

Phone: (512)305-7400

Fax: (512)305-7401


Cost of Living

Texas is famous for having low costs of living. Some of the cheapest places in the U.S. to live can be found in the Lone Star State. Despite their size, San Antonio, Houston, and Dallas have very low costs of living. Most cities this highly populated are well above the national average instead of being well below the national average. How far are they from the average? Let’s check them out.

A rating of 100 is the national average for cost of living.

Arlington: 99.3

Plano: 97.4

Tyler: 96.3

San Antonio: 95.7

Beaumont: 95.7

Austin: 95.5

Houston: 92.2

Dallas: 91.9

Corpus Christi: 90.8

El Paso: 90.4

Amarillo: 89.5

Lubbock: 89.1

Waco: 88.9

Harlingen: 82.8

Wow! There’s not a city on this list that reaches the national average. Arlington, a suburb of Dallas, flirts with the average but doesn’t quite make it.

A Degree or Copious Amounts of Experience

Most major hospital systems in the largest of Texas’s cities prefer or require you to have a four-year degree or a ton of experience. Perhaps the smaller cities will consider a candidate without either. You could enroll in college—you’ll have to be physically in class—and that could help you meet this requirement/preference, but you’ll have an easier time finding employment if you already have a four year degree.


Texas is the second most populous state in the country and where there are people, you must have nurses. This logic works for most of Texas but many of the big cities have too many nurses and not enough positions.

Dallas has a lot of nursing colleges in the area, so it might be difficult to find placement. If you can find employment in Dallas, you’d do well to sign on with the UT Southwestern Medical Center. Houston has a similar problem as does San Antonio. If you have your heart set on any of these areas, continue to apply. It might take a little longer to get a position, but you’ll get there. Another route would be to find a job in a nearby city.

College Station—relatively close to Houston—tends to have openings. Austin—near San Antonio—has employment opportunities as well. The Texas job market fluctuates, so these figures might be off in a few months and certainly in a year or two.

There’s a lot of Texas to explore. Make sure you take full advantage of one of the most diverse states in terms of geography. Oh, and many of the cities on this list have fantastic landmarks, shopping, dining, and activities.


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