Travel Nursing in Illinois: Chicago and Beyond

Illinois is an exciting travel nursing destination! From Chicago, with its world-famous art, cuisine, and museums, to small towns with rolling countryside, travel nurses have a lot of choices. Take advantage of opportunities and see different parts of this great state and neighboring areas while travel nursing in Illinois.

Travel nursing in Illinois allows nurses to see all that the state has to offer while providing care to those in need. Whether you’re looking for adventure or are just feeling burnout at your current workplace, you’re sure to find a travel nursing job that fits your needs and interests in Illinois.


Illinois hospitals benefit from travel nurses coming in with new knowledge and techniques, making them even better equipped to serve their communities. Of the 205 hospitals in Illinois ranked by U.S. News, 25 met high standards.

As a travel nurse, you will get the opportunity to assist healthcare systems with their ever-changing staffing needs while also enjoying a new work environment. This can be an amazing professional development journey giving you experience as a travel nurse in some of the top hospitals within Illinois. There is no better way to grow professionally with the flexibility of shorter contracts and travel assignments.

With an ever-growing demand for excellent healthcare services across the U.S., Illinois is rising to the challenge in a big way. Hospitals in Illinois offer an incredible range of benefits to patients who require medical attention, whether it be for physical or mental health issues, both chronic and acute cases.

The expertise, passion, and commitment of the healthcare professionals that work at these hospitals ensure that patients get the best care available and make a full recovery as quickly as possible. Illinois hospitals strive to provide innovative solutions when presenting treatments, with state-of-the-art facilities and expertly trained staff members.

Cost of Living

Cost of living for travel nurses can cover a wide range of factors. In some of Illinois’ major cities, the cost of living is surprisingly low and ranges from affordable to more expensive cities like Chicago. Chicago offers above average travel nursing pay at $130,393 a year or $63 an hour according to ZipRecruiter.

The U.S. News & World Report’s Affordability Rankings ranks Illinois as 16th in terms of basic affordability. When it comes to more rural counties dotted across Illinois, they provide great affordability with a beautiful backdrop and range markedly less than Chicago and surrounding suburbs. It just depends on what you are looking for: bustling city or quiet countryside.

Fun Facts

Illinois has plenty of fun facts and history to inspire travel nurses. Did you know that former president Abraham Lincoln was one of many notable figures who called Illinois their home? It also was the first state to ratify the 13th Amendment to abolish slavery.

There are plenty of cultural sites to explore in Illinois like Cahokia Mounds State Historic Site. Cahokia was once home to the most sophisticated prehistoric native civilization north of Mexico.

It is amazing how much history this Midwestern state holds. Preparing your itinerary can be quite difficult because there’s so much to see and do!

Where to Go

Illinois is an incredibly diverse state. Dynamic cities like Chicago and the Quad Cities are full of energy and cultural experiences if you are looking to get out and explore. If cities aren’t your thing, the state is also full of small towns in rural areas with Midwestern charm.

No matter what kind of lifestyle you’re seeking, you can find it in Illinois. Here are a few of the best locations for travel nursing assignments:


Chicago is one of the most intriguing cities in the United States with culture, food, and attractions like no other. Spend an afternoon at the famed Cloud Gate in Millennium Park, catch a Cubs game at Wrigley Field, or explore sprawling Lake Michigan at Navy Pier. Chicago has plenty for foodies from classic favorites like hot dogs to deep dish pizza. There’s no shortage of things to do in the Windy City.


Champaign-Urbana is a vibrant destination for travel nurses looking for culture and adventure. This college town offers the perfect combination of city amenities, small-town charm, and access to some of the best outdoor activities in the Midwest. Plus, Champaign-Urbana is conveniently located within driving distance from Chicago and Saint Louis, making day trips to explore easy!


Peoria is known for its lively art scene and picturesque parks. There are plenty of dining and shopping spots to explore, including some of the best restaurants the state has to offer. Adventurers will love exploring the hundreds of miles of hiking trails around the area as well as visiting interesting history-related sites like Fort Crevecoeur or Grand View Drive.


Rockford houses some of the most interesting attractions and amenities. Take time to explore Anderson Japanese Gardens or visit the Rockford Art Museum. You can even go skiing at Alpine Hills and hiking at the Sinnissippi Park. In addition, the hospital systems in the area have incredibly advanced care options.


Springfield is the capital of Illinois. It was founded in 1818 and has the distinction of being the birthplace of President Abraham Lincoln. It’s also home to several historical sites that reflect periods throughout history from Native American civilizations to Route 66. Springfield itself is a hub for Illinois politics, history, and culture, making this city a great location for your next assignment.


This small suburb of Chicago is technically a Village. With a population of only 16,892 at the 2020 census, this quaint location is a perfect little quiet spot in the country. Westchester is a peaceful community filled with diverse history and culture. Located just 32 miles east of downtown Chicago, you’ll find plenty of attractions and activities that make Westchester an ideal travel nursing stop.


Naperville is a western suburb of Chicago, IL. It’s actually halfway between the Windy City and Indianapolis. Take a riverboat tour down the Fox River or hike one of the many nearby trails. Shopping and dining destination downtown offer endless opportunities for exploration. If nightlife is what you’re after, there are plenty of fun spots to discover as well.


Located just 40 miles west of Chicago, Aurora is Illinois’ second largest city. It has convenient and direct access to the city as well as lakeside activities such as fishing, sailing, and swimming located nearby. Enjoy scenic spots like City Center Park or catch an outdoor performance of a play at one of many stages throughout Aurora’s parks.

Travel Nursing Jobs in Illinois

Illinois currently has pending legislation (Illinois – HB 4269 and HB 4531) to join the enhanced Nurse Licensure Compact (eNLC). Being a Compact member state would give travel nurses the ability to practice in other states that are part of the agreement.

Travel nursing in Illinois is a rewarding and exciting journey for adventure seekers. It offers the chance to explore the Windy City of Chicago, as well as charming rural towns like Westchester and Champaign-Urbana. Travel nurses in Illinois also get to experience the scenic beauty offered by the various parks and trails around Lake Michigan.

Pack your bags and get ready for your next adventure! Contact Supplemental Health Care’s experienced recruiting team is ready to match you with the right travel nursing job in Illinois or anywhere else across the country.

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