This is the first question that pops up after you have signed your contract for a rural remote placement. Here are some top tips that have been piled together from nurses within Healthcare Australia and have done back-to-back contracts for over 4+ years.
Once your contract has been signed, your consultant will begin to organise your flights/travel to get from your home (nearest airport location) to your contract location.
This blog is aimed at “flying” to contracts (instead of driving) and what to pack in your suitcase for the big adventure ahead.
Table of Contents
WHAT TO PACK?
Signing a contract for 6, 8 or 12 weeks with only one suitcase can cause a bit of anxiety (for the majority of us haha), but here is a handy list:
1) Portable charger
This is so handy to have in your bag. During travel time, working double shifts and needing charge, this is a must! Plus, when you’re out exploring during contracts, you want to be able to charge on the go!
2) Packing cubes
These are very handy to split your underwear, socks, singlets, work clothes, pants etc. They can range from $15 for a set +
3) Pair of each shoe
- Flip-flop (aka thongs)
- Work shoes
- 1x pair of “nice” going out shoes – you never know the awesome opportunities that might get involved in
4) Selfie stick and/or tripod
Sometimes you’re travelling alone, and you are going to see some amazing sites. You don’t want to miss any photo opportunities.
Bringing your own pillow cover/s can be such a nice touch to your new temporary room and bring that next level of comfort.
If you love cooking, bring your own spices in small ziplock bags (and label them). It can be quite costly to buy spices, so bring your favs!
This is so handy to have books on instead of carrying physical books
8) Phone with extra internet data (you can usually “top up” monthly while away)
This is essential. It’s rare to get Wi-Fi included in your accommodation, so make sure you have plenty of data. Or get yourself a dongle because your gonna need it (teltra have great portable wifi devices).
9) Aeropress coffee press or mini plunger
For all your coffee lovers, this is an essential (stick milk frother if you like frothy milk)
10) Mini bluetooth speaker
Gotta bust out the tunes in your room
11) Photos of family and friends
This is great to put in your room to make it feel more homey
12) Essential oils and/or travel diffuser
Post night shift relax time
13) Yeti drink bottle
This is GREAT for hot climates (they also have stubby holders)
14) Sunscreen/bug spray
Sometimes it’s crazy expensive in small towns or islands
15) Ear plugs
Sometimes being in a new environment and living in shared accommodation takes a bit of tie to adjust. Using ear plugs to block out any noise, and for shift worker life, can be very handy.
16) Eye Mask
You won’t know how dark your new room will be, so an eye mask is essential for shift working life
If you have the extra room. There is just an added cosy factor when you have your own linen with you.
- Roll your clothes (instead of folding) to create more space
- Read the rules for your flight about electronics, aerosols, portable chargers etc. This is your responsibility and will help with packing
- If you require more internet, be aware that most facilities don’t give wifi (you get free accommodation, free utilities etc so that’s a win, but don’t always expect wifi). When travelling you can either increase your data package with your phone plan or the Telstra wifi portable device is a handy purchase. – https://www.telstra.com.au/internet/mobile-broadband/telstra/4gx-hotspot
- BYO beans if you’re a hard-core coffee lover. It can be hard to get a decent coffee when out in regional/remote towns
- Bring your favourite snacks as some shops are very limited or extremely pricey
- If you are in an indigenous community, be careful about clothing you are bringing. It’s very important to respect the culture in areas you are working and will need to be covered up appropriately.
WHO ARE YOU FLYING WITH?
Qantas? Virgin? Jetstar? Air NZ? Rex?
- You will be sent a corporate traveller document with all your flight/travel details
- Check which airline you are flying with and here are some tips
- If you are with Qantas, Jetstar or Virgin then read below:
- Download the Qantas (this is also Jetstar) or Virgin app as this makes it so much easier to check into your flight and find details.
- Check your baggage allowance (15kg? 23kg? 30kg?)
- Regional planes (such as Rex) can have a 15kg limit, whereas Qantas/Virgin can have an increased limit of 23kg or more (more for NZ flights)
Collect the flying points for discounted/free flights & shopping:
QANTAS or JETSTAR
- Go online or via the app and join the QANTAS Frequent Flyer Program. Once you receive your corporate traveller documentation for your upcoming travel, you can gain those QANTAS FREQUENT FLYER POINTS.
- Simply create an account, then clikc on “add upcoming trip”,
- Add your reference number (located on your corporate traveller documentation), add your last name and it’s all added! Those points are yours now
- Click the link below to Join Qantas Frequent Flyer | Qantas
VIRGIN: Signup to get a VELOCITY card to claim points.
- Go online or via the app and click on “FIND MY TRIP”
- Add your booking reference number (will be on your corporate traveller documentation).
- DONE! Points are yours.
AIR NEW ZEALAND: Signup to Airpoints
- Go online and follow the steps to join
- Add your booking reference and last name
- DONE! Points are yours
- Click the link below to join
These accumulate with every contract, and you can add up your points for online shopping or discounted/free flights (win win)!