Best Nursing Certifications for the Most Travel Nurse Job Options

December 26, 2022


Fusion Medical Staffing

Nursing CertificationsTravel nursing is a lucrative healthcare career. Not only can it empower you to use your nursing skills to save lives across the country, but it provides countless opportunities for advancement.

If you’re interested in a life of travel nursing, check out the top nursing certifications to give you the most options when it comes to the best travel registered nurse jobs.

Best Nursing Certifications for the Most Travel Nurse Job Options

Certifications for new grad nurses

Congratulations! You’ve completed either your associate or Bachelor of Science in Nursing, passed the National Council Licensure Exam (NCLEX-RN) or NCLEX-P and now hold a valid registered nurse (RN) license. Now what?

The next step is obtaining the necessary certifications to practice what you’ve mastered while earning your nursing degree and boost your nursing credentials. These are the top certifications to get when you've completed your nursing education. 

Basic life support

  • Credential: BLS
  • Renew every: two years

BLS certification is required by the American Red Cross for first-responders, healthcare providers, and public safety professionals. A BLS basic certification is necessary to practice as a nurse.

As a professional health care provider, it’s your responsibility to provide the highest quality of patient care possible. A basic life support certificate facilitates that by testing your skills on cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), how to use an automated external defibrillator (AED), and how to relieve airway obstructions in patients of all ages.

Advanced cardiovascular life support

  • Credential: ACLS
  • Renew every: two years

Building on the BLS certification is the advanced cardiovascular life support certification. Essentially, ACLS certifies one’s ability to recognize and intervene in case of cardiopulmonary arrest or other cardiovascular emergencies.

Certified by the American Heart Association (AHA), ACLS certification is geared towards healthcare professionals who directly treat cardiopulmonary arrest or other cardiovascular emergencies. This certification may be required for travel nurses depending on their specialty and setting.

Pediatric advanced life support

  • Credential: PALS
  • Renew every: two years

If you plan to work with children, then you’ll want to pursue certification in pediatric advanced life support. Certified by the AHA, PALS is for healthcare workers who respond to emergencies in infants and children.

This certification tests a nurse’s ability to resuscitate and stabilize infants and children in critical conditions.

Certifications for registered nurses (RNs)

Of course, there are additional nursing certifications you can earn as you gain experience. These are the most popular RN certifications available.

Holistic nursing

  • Credential: HN-BC holistic nurse
  • Renew every: five years

The holistic nursing certification is for RNs who want to specialize in approaching patient care by focusing on the body, mind, and spirit.

With a BC advanced holistic nurse credential from the American Holistic Nurses Credentialing Corporation (AHNCC), nurses learn to tend to a patient’s emotional, mental, social, and spiritual wellbeing. The basis of this holistic approach comes from the belief that a nurse’s attitude and feelings impact how they interact with and care for their patients.

Nurse executive

  • Credential: NE-BC
  • Renew every: five years

For those RNs who want to work their way up, a nurse executive certification could be in your future. This exam is competency based and tests the skills of a nurse when it comes to their unit, service line, department, or nursing program influence.

Nurse executives are healthcare professionals who are accountable for a small group of nursing and non-nursing staff. These executives focus on daily operations, staffing, staff development, plus individual and group performance.

Nursing informatics

  • Credential: RN-BC
  • Renew every: five years

According to the American Nurses Association (ANA), nursing informatics is “the specialty that integrates nursing science with multiple information and analytical sciences to identify, define, manage, and communicate data, information, knowledge, and wisdom in nursing practice.”

So, if you have a propensity for information technology, consider growing your career with the informatics nursing certification, accredited by The Accreditation Board for Specialty Nursing Certification.

Certifications for licensed practical nurses (LPNs)

If you've already progressed from a certified nursing assistant to a licensed practical nurse, there are tons of ways to advance your career as an LPN. Here are some of the certifications that can help you do so.

IV therapy

  • Credential: NAPNES
  • Renew every: three years

Because LPNs frequently administer medications intravenously, a certification in IV therapy could benefit you.

Intravenous (IV) therapy delivers fluid directly into the veins of the body and works by using an injection with a syringe or via infusion. This is the fastest way to deliver medications, blood products, and other essential fluids into the patient’s bloodstream.

IV therapy helps quickly save lives, improves various health conditions, aids dehydration, and allows for blood transfusions.

Long-term care

  • Credential: CLTC
  • Renew every: two years

To work in a long-term care healthcare facility, you must have knowledge on the fields of insurance, financial services, law, and accounting, as well as the emotional, physical, and financial wellbeing of the client(s).

That’s where a LTC certification comes in. This certification is vital for those who wish to work in LTC environments and ensures LPNs have the proper skillset to fully care for their patients long-term.

Wound care

  • Credential: CWCA
  • Renew every: 10 years

You work in a myriad of healthcare environments and treat a slew of patients with each shift. Because each patient comes with their own unique care needs, a certification in wound care is important to gain the full knowledge on how to clean and treat diverse wounds.

A wound care certification (WCC) is highly preferred by hospitals and LTC facilities. If you’re looking to propel your travel nursing career, then add this certification to your nursing belt.

Certifications for advanced practice nurses (APRNs)

You’ve gained experience in the nursing field and now want to further your nursing knowledge. Advanced practice registered nurses or nurse practitioners can do just that by gaining extensive training into patient diagnoses, care services, and ultimately, treating patients in need.

Check out these top advanced practice registered nurse and clinical nurse specialist certifications to help you grow as a travel nurse.

Family nurse practitioner

  • Credential: FNP
  • Renew every: five years

If you want the ability to treat patients of all ages, then you should look into a family nurse practitioner (FNP) certification.

This certificate tests a nurse’s clinical family and individual knowledge in prenatal, pediatric, adolescent, adult, older adult, and elderly primary care.

Nurse anesthetist

  • Credential: CRNA
  • Renew every: four years

Administering anesthesia to patients is a fine art. Master the technique and become a certified registered nurse anesthetist with this certification.

Certified registered nurse anesthetists serve patients in a variety of healthcare settings and deliver comprehensive care using accepted anesthetic techniques like general, regional, sedation, local, and pain management.

Plus, with this certificate, you can consult and implement respiratory and ventilator care to aid in an emergency.

Nursing specialties certifications

Now that we’ve explored the certifications that can help grow your career as an RN, LPN, and APRN, let’s look at some of the specialty nursing certifications that give nurses more access to travel nursing jobs across the country.

Critical care

certification in critical care is for nurses who want to practice in a complex, unpredictable, and specialized field.

A critical care registered nurse can earn their certification from the American Association of Critical Care Nurses (AACN) and get certified for adult, neonatal, and pediatric critical care.


The specialized pediatric nursing field is one of the most rewarding nursing careers out there. With a pediatric nursing certification, you’re qualified to provide immediate care to children in need.

pediatric nurse certification can lead you to higher wages, enhanced career mobility, and personal growth and satisfaction.

Neonatal care

Nurses who wish to provide direct care to acutely and critically ill neonatal patients will need to be certified in neonatal care.

As some of the most precious and vulnerable patient communities, nurses who work in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) must be skilled in cardiac care, medical/surgical, trauma, critical care, and more.


Emergency room (ER) RNs are the cornerstone of every emergency healthcare department. A certificate in emergency healthcare gives you the freedom and ability to work in hospitals, urgent care centers, trauma centers, and as first responders in ambulances or flight services.

Being a certified emergency nurse or even a certified pediatric emergency nurse can land you in a career in the highest level of emergency nursing.


Hospice/palliative care is a specialized field that goes beyond general nursing. These special RNs are responsible for the care of terminally ill patients and their families.

In such a sensitive and specialized role, it’s required for these RNs to become certified as a general certified hospice and palliative nurse or palliative pediatric nurse.

Ambulatory care

If you’re interested in working with a wide variety of patients outside of the acute care setting, check out the ambulatory care certification. An ambulatory care nurse certification grants nurses the ability to treat a spectrum of patients including general adults, pediatrics, surgical, orthopedic, psychiatric, and more.

Cardiac care

Are you an expert in all things heart-related (or would you like to be)? Then get certified as a cardiac care nurse and provide direct care to acutely and critically ill adult cardiac patients.

With this certification, you can work in cardiac care units, hospital intensive care units (ICUs), telemetry, progressive care, heart failure clinics, home care, interventional cardiology, cardiac cath labs, and electrophysiology units.


It’s no secret that cancer is a complicated disease. Do your part to simplify the condition with an oncology certification and become an oncology certified nurse who work with patients who are undergoing both solid and bloodborne cancer diagnoses, treatment, and remission.

Psychiatric mental health

With a certification in psychiatric mental health, you can care for patients who suffer from anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and other conditions.

Psychiatric mental health RNs are the second largest group of behavioral health professionals in the U.S., so you'll be in good company after earning this certification.



Collecting nursing certifications helps advance your career as a professional travel nurse. Once you’ve logged your clinical practice hours and passed your certification test, start browsing positions that require your nursing specialty certifications and let the adventure begin.