Tips & Guides / Travel Nursing

Meet Landing’s Travel Nurses: Kelsey Melanson

By Landing | May 6, 2022
Travel nurse Kelsey Melanson

Happy Nurse’s Week! We’re thrilled to have the opportunity to share the stories of the traveling medical professionals who are currently living with Landing and taking advantage of the freedom our furnished apartments and flexible leases afford them as they travel from contract to contract. 

Kelsey Melanson was kind enough to sit down with us to tell us about how she got into nursing, what it’s like being a travel nurse, and how she likes living with Landing: 

Tell us a bit about yourself!

My name is Kelsey, and I am a progressive care nurse in the ICU. I wanted to become a nurse ever since I was in a rollover car accident right before I went to college. I just felt like being in the hospital was kind of cool and interesting—it was a nicer, calmer, and less stressful experience than I thought it would be. People were helping me out and checking on me, and I wasn’t scared at all. Weirdly enough, it was kind of fun, and that’s how I got into nursing. 

I worked in Michigan for two years when I was like, “Why am I living in Michigan? It’s so cold all year round, and I only have three months to have fun. Why would I live somewhere that’s only fun for three months?” I was originally looking to apply to a hospital in Dallas when a travel nurse friend of mine suggested I do a travel nurse assignment in Dallas to test the waters at each hospital and see if I liked the area. I wound up going to Seattle instead because there were no jobs left in Dallas, then the COVID-19 pandemic hit two weeks after I got there. It was interesting timing! 

After that, I started working and living in a Landing in Dallas, then went to Arizona, Dallas again for another 10 months, then Virginia, which is where I am now. 

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How did you start living with Landing?

The most stressful part of travel nursing is finding a place to live. Before I found Landing, I had to do all this work, from researching the neighborhood, comparing prices, finding and interviewing roommates, and talking to landlords. But with Landing, you just need to look roughly at the area, the amenities of the apartment, and the apartment itself, and you’re good! It’s so easy, fast, and straightforward. 

I always tell people about Landing because I’m a solo female traveling to cities I’m not familiar with. I don’t want to live somewhere where someone else might have a set of keys or I don’t know whether there are cameras. It’s also important to me that I’m in a neighborhood where I feel safe. Before I moved into my Landing in Arizona, I had to live in an area where I could hear sirens and people talking right outside my window. I didn’t feel safe, and it felt like everyone knew I wasn’t from there. I couldn’t sleep. I wound up moving into a hotel in a safer area for the time being, but the hotel room was small, and I just felt cramped. I couldn’t find anything because my belongings were all still packed up. 

Because I rent from Landing, I’m not too nervous about transferring to another state. When I am looking for my newest contract, I’ll preview which apartments I like and bookmark about three of them. Then, if I get that assignment, I go back to those three, research them further, and compare them. With other sites, I have to sift through 100 listings, but 75 of them might be with roommates, and 15 of them might be in a bad neighborhood. There’s just way too much to look at, and it takes too much time. 

What do you like to do in your free time when you’re traveling? 

On my off days, I try to work out every morning, then try out new restaurants or do something outdoors in the afternoon. I try to see what the mainstream touristy spots in my new city are, then find the local spots so I can live like the locals. I’m only in town for three months, so I want to see what the city has to offer on the touristy side and what it would be like living here full-time. 

Every city has its own unique vibe, and it’s fun to embrace what the locals do there. For example, Seattle was so down-to-earth, with people waking up early and driving two hours to go for a hike. That was really the first time I went hiking because there isn’t really anywhere to hike in Michigan.  

Then, I went to Dallas, and it was very preppy, with bougie brunches and pool parties. Arizona was similar to Washington, with locals who liked hiking, being outside, and working out. Now that I’m in Virginia, I get to experience the beach-town vibes. It’s really fun to try out new things!

Do you have any advice for other travel nurses living with Landing?

If you’re thinking about doing travel nursing, I definitely recommend living with Landing because it’s easier on your mind. You’re already moving across the country by yourself to a city where you may not know anyone, and you don’t want to add in a bad roommate, a sketchy neighborhood, a falling-apart house, or an unresponsive landlord. I’ve found Landing to be super easy and safe. All you have to do is pack up your clothes and essentials and move in. I don’t have to deal with buying furniture, paying bills, or setting up Wi-Fi (I honestly don’t know how to do that—I’ve never had to!). 

Sometimes, when you’re living with roommates, you’re going into their house and you have to follow their rules. They don’t allow you to have your shoes on, or something like that, and you’re basically living how they live for the three months. But when you’re living with Landing, you’re living how you want to live for three months. You can live how you want in that space. 

I’ve found it can be harder to find Landing apartments in smaller towns or cities in the country, so I will only accept contracts where Landing has apartments. I literally base my travel nursing off where Landing is.

Looking for travel nurse housing?

If you’re a travel nurse looking for somewhere to live during your contract, Landing offers fully furnished apartments in over 375 cities throughout the U.S., all with flexible lease terms that start at 30-day stays. Two weeks’ notice is all you need to move to your new home within the Landing network. Learn more about what a Landing membership can do for you, and browse our apartments today!

Interested in learning more about the other travel nurses living with Landing? Check out their stories here!

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Ted may be the world's slowest typist and struggle to hold a pen, but he has mastered how to pursue a more flexible lifestyle throughout his airborne adventures around the U.S. Whether you're looking for more information before migrating to a new city or want to find an easier way to rent a nest—erm, apartment—Ted will always be here to share his best advice for where to live and how to thrive.