25 Highest Paying Cities for Nurses in 2022 | Unitek College (2022)

Table of Contents
These U.S. Cities Pay Registered Nurses the Highest Salaries Based on Cost of Living Nurses Salary How Much Do Nurses Make? Highest Paying Industries for Nurses Highest Paying States for Nurses More to a Nurse’s Salary than a Paycheck Our Methodology The Highest Paying Cities for Nurses 1. Modesto, California How much do nurses make in Modesto, CA? 2. San Jose, California How much do nurses make in San Jose, CA? 3. Sacramento, California How much do nurses make in Sacramento, CA? 4. Riverside, California How much do nurses make in Riverside, CA? 5. Las Vegas, Nevada How much do nurses make in Las Vegas, NV? 6. Albuquerque, New Mexico How much do nurses make in Albuquerque, NM? 7. San Francisco, California How much do nurses make in San Francisco, CA? 8. Santa Barbara, California How much do nurses make in Santa Barbara, CA? 9. Houston, Texas How much do nurses make in Houston, TX? 10. Greensboro, North Carolina How much do nurses make in Greensboro, NC? 11. San Diego, California How much do nurses make in San Diego, CA? 12. Spokane, Washington How much do nurses make in Spokane, WA? 13. Tucson, Arizona How much do nurses make in Tucson, AZ? 14. Honolulu, Hawaii How much do nurses make in Honolulu, HI? 15. Detroit, Michigan How much do nurses make in Detroit, MI? 16. Boise, Idaho How much do nurses make in Boise, ID? 17. Charlottesville, Virginia How much do nurses make in Charlottesville, VA? 18. Providence, Rhode Island How much do nurses make in Providence, RI? 19. Memphis, Tennessee How much do nurses make in Memphis, TN? 20. Los Angeles, California How much do nurses make in Los Angeles, CA? 21. Cincinnati, Ohio How much do nurses make in Cincinnati, OH? 22. Minneapolis – St. Paul, Minnesota How much do nurses make in Minneapolis – St. Paul, MN? 23. San Antonio, Texas How much do nurses make in San Antonio, TX? 24. Milwaukee, Wisconsin How much do nurses make in Milwaukee, WI? 25. Portland, Oregon How much do nurses make in Portland, OR? FAQs Videos

These U.S. Cities Pay Registered Nurses the Highest Salaries Based on Cost of Living

Nursing is one of the most in-demand jobs in the healthcare industry. As a career, it offers stability, great pay, and personal fulfillment. In fact, many nurses consider their profession to be a calling rather than a job. Those who enter the nursing field are passionate and caring individuals who strive to improve the health of others in their communities. It truly is a noble profession.

As a Registered Nurse (RN), however, serving others should not prevent you from planning ahead by researching the benefits and average nursing salaries across the country.

Not only will RNs likely see a surge in employment growth in the coming years, but they can receive considerable salaries without having to spend too many years in school. This comprehensive RN salary guide will attempt to cover the following questions:

  1. Do nurses get paid well?
  2. How much does a nurse earn per year?
  3. Where do nurses get paid the most?
  4. What are the highest paying states for Registered Nurses?
  5. And what are the top paying cities for nurses?

Before we delve into RN salaries by city, let’s start with the top paying states and industries for nurses as well as the average nurse’s salary nationwide.

Nurses Salary

How Much Do Nurses Make?

According to theU.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), Registered Nurses earn an average salary of about $77,000 per year, and an average hourly wage of about $37.00 per hour.

These rates can greatly vary depending on your employer, experience, and specialization. For instance, nurses working in the pharmaceutical industry make an average salary of $86,400, while those working in doctor’s offices earn an average salary of $69,570.

Here’s a closer look at the top paying industries and average salaries for nurses, by employment type:

Highest Paying Industries for Nurses

Industry Average Hourly Pay Average Salary
Pharmaceutical Industry $41.54 $86,400
Outpatient Care Centers $40.73 $84,720
Specialty Hospitals $38.86 $80,840
General Hospitals $38.20 $79,460
Psychiatric & Substance Abuse Hospitals $35.87 $74,610
Home Health Care Services $35.41 $73,660
Nursing Care Facilities $33.53 $69,740
Physician Offices $33.45 $69,570

Highest Paying States for Nurses

A nurse’s pay can also vary by location. For instance, here are the top 5 paying states for nurses as well as the average nurse salary per hour:

  1. California:
    • Average Hourly Wage: $54.44
    • Average Annual Salary: $113,240
  1. Hawaii:
    • Average Hourly Wage: $50.03
    • Average Annual Salary: $104,060
  1. Washington, D.C.:
    • Average Hourly Wage: $45.59
    • Average Annual Salary: $94,820
  1. Massachusetts:
    • Average Hourly Wage: $44.79
    • Average Annual Salary: $93,160
  1. Oregon:
    • Average Hourly Wage: $44.69
    • Average Annual Salary: $92,960

More to a Nurse’s Salary than a Paycheck

When it comes to quality of life, there are a lot of factors to consider, and where you chose to work plays a major role.

It can feel a little overwhelming, but a little bit of research can go a long way.

For example, we wanted to take a granular look at the highest paying US cities, by evaluating their average nursing salaries as compared to their cost-of-living.

Our Methodology

We pulled the cost-of-living index (COLI) values for each city in our study from Expatistan.

Average RN salaries and other statistics were taken from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

The average cost-of-living index (COLI) for all of the U.S. cities we compared was about 162. If a city like Modesto, California, had a COLI of 140, then it would be 14% less expensive to live there than the average city in our list.

Based on the COLI for each city, we adjusted their annual wage to account for the difference in cost of living. In the example above, the average salary of $112,790 in Modesto was increased to $130,593, making it the highest paying city for Registered Nurses.

Based on each city’s cost-of-living index, average salaries were increased or reduced proportionately to better measure overall RN compensation and quality-of-life in each respective city.

The Highest Paying Cities for Nurses

Here are the 25 best paying cities for nurses in 2022 based on their cost-of-living index, starting with the highest paying city of them all!

1. Modesto, California

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First up on our list of highest paying cities is Modesto, a vibrant and populous city in the state of California. You might already be familiar with Modesto: Not only does it have the largest wine factory in the world, but George Lucas—the acclaimed creator of Star Wars—was born there.

Located in the Central Valley, 68 miles south of Sacramento and 92 miles east of San Francisco, Modesto provides residents with a bustling downtown, numerous restaurants, theaters, and festivals. The area is also surrounded by rich farmland. Consequently, agricultural production contributes a great deal to its economy as well as the farm-to-table movement.

Modesto is also a major hub for education and healthcare. Some of the top employers include Memorial Medical Center, Modesto City Schools, Doctors Medical Center, Kaiser Permanente, and Sutter Gould Medical Foundation. In terms of cost-of-living, Forbeshas recognized Modesto as one of their “Best Bang-for-the-Buck Cities”. Modesto ranked eighth in housing affordability and travel time, and has been noted for its forecasted job growth.

(Video) Top 5 Highest Paying States for Registered Nurses

There are several reasons to choose Modesto for your nursing career. Nurses in this city earn an average salary of about $113,000 per year, while the top-earning nurses can make as much as $175,000, or more. When its cheaper cost of living is factored into the equation, their adjusted nurse’s salary in Modesto grows even higher. Given the thriving location, top employers, and high wages, it’s no wonder Modesto, California is at the top of our list.

How much do nurses make in Modesto, CA?

  • Nurses in Modesto make an average salary of$112,790.
  • For some people, in the 90th percentile, salaries can reach as high as$175,490 or more.
  • Cost of Living Index (COLI):140
  • The cost of living in Modesto is14% cheaper than the average of all the cities in our study.
  • The adjusted average income based on its cost of living raises a nurse’s pay to$130,593.

2. San Jose, California

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San Jose is the economic, cultural, and political center of the world-renowned Silicon Valley. Its estimated population was 1,021,795 in 2019, making it thethird-most populous city in California. San Jose is often referred to as a “global city” for its innovation and wealth.

The city might be known for its high-tech industry and coastal weather, but it’s also home to large healthcare organizations like the Regional Medical Center of San Jose, Santa Clara Valley Medical Center, and El Camino Hospital. Each of these facilities has received prestigious awards, and El Camino Hospital has repeatedly been designated as a nursing magnet hospital. Even though San Jose has a higher cost of living than some of our other cities, it can be an attractive destination for nurses thanks to its coveted location and average nursing salary.

How much do nurses make in San Jose, CA?

  • Nurses in San Jose make an average salary of$140,740.
  • For some people, in the 90th percentile, salaries can reach as high as$197,650 or more.
  • Cost of Living Index (COLI):195
  • The cost of living in San Jose is20% more expensive than the average of all the cities in our study.
  • The adjusted average income based on its affordability lowers a nurse’s pay to$116,993.

3. Sacramento, California

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Sacramento is the capital of California and one of the fastest-growing cities in the state. This growth can partially be attributed to its status as a prominent financial center on the West Coast. It’s also a major educational hub, not to mention a key area for California’s healthcare industry (i.e. Sutter Health, world-renowned UC Davis Medical Center, etc.)

Sacramento is a tourist destination. For instance, it’s home to The California Museum, theCrocker Art Museum, theCalifornia Hall of Fame, theCalifornia State Capitol Museum, and theOld Sacramento State Historic Park. And don’t forget about Sacramento’s budding contemporary culture, giving it the nickname of “the most hipstercity” in California.

There are several reasons to choose Sacramento for your nursing career. In addition to its notable healthcare organizations, nurses in this city earn over $126,000 per year, on average. Even with its higher cost of living factored into the equation, the adjust nursing salary in Sacrament remains well over $100,000 per year.

How much do nurses make in Sacramento, CA?

  • Nurses in Sacramento make an average salary of$126,560.
  • For some people, in the 90th percentile, salaries can reach as high as$179,060 or more.
  • Cost of Living Index (COLI):178
  • The cost of living in Sacramento is10% more expensive than the average of all the cities in our study.
  • The adjusted average income based on its cost of living lowers a nurse’s pay to$115,253.

4. Riverside, California

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Riverside is the most populous city in the Inland Empire metropolitan area. It’s named for its location beside the Santa Ana River, and residents there can reach downtown Los Angeles in just under an hour. Riverside is also the birthplace of California’s citrus industry; home of the largest Mission Revival Style building in the U.S.; and home to the University of California, Riverside. Furthermore, the UC Riverside School of Medicine is the first new research-based public medical school in decades.

Many have relocated to Riverside for its warm, dry climate. Numerous colleges, universities, and vocational schools can also be found in the city. Since the cost-of-living is 7% cheaper than the average city in our study, the adjusted average nursing salary in Riverside is raised to well over $114,000 per year.

How much do nurses make in Riverside, CA?

  • Nurses in Riverside make an average salary of$105,570.
  • For some people, in the 90th percentile, salaries can reach as high as$149,280 or more.
  • Cost of Living Index (COLI):150
  • The cost of living in Riverside is7% cheaper than the average of all the cities in our study.
  • The adjusted average income based on its affordability raises a nurse’s pay to$114,084.

5. Las Vegas, Nevada

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The “Entertainment Capital of the World” is well known for the dazzling Las Vegas Strip. A city of lights, resort hotels, restaurants, and residential high-rises, Las Vegas is a world-renowned destination. However, there’s much more to it than meets the eye.

For instance, Las Vegas maintains lower taxes and cost of living. When it comes to homeowners, their utilities cost 10% less than the national average. Las Vegas residents can further benefit from their city’s increasing incomes and zero state income tax. Not only is Las Vegas a great destination for seeking employment, most residents are able to lay down roots for a reasonable price. Nurses in Las Vegas can make an average salary of about $90,000, with some earning well over $120,000 a year. As Southern Nevada continues to grow, so does the demand for more healthcare providers.

How much do nurses make in Las Vegas, NV?

  • Nurses in Las Vegas make an average salary of$91,330.
  • For some people, in the 90th percentile, salaries can reach as high as$122,110 or more.
  • Cost of Living Index (COLI):153
  • The cost of living in Las Vegas is6% cheaper than the average of all the cities in our study.
  • The adjusted average income based on its affordability raises a nurse’s pay to$96,760.

6. Albuquerque, New Mexico

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Visit ABQ said it best: “At the heart of New Mexico beats the pulse of a vibrant city.” In fact, Albuquerque is New Mexico’s largest city. It maintains a modern downtown area that nicely contrasts with Old Town Albuquerque. Filled with historic adobe buildings, Old Town houses San Felipe de Neri Church, five museums, and many shops. The neighboring Indian Pueblo Cultural Center also recounts the area’s tribal history.

Albuquerque is also a hub for nurses. The city contains various state-of-the-art medical centers. Some of the top hospitals include the VA Medical Center, Presbyterian Hospital, Presbyterian Medical Services, Heart Hospital of New Mexico, and Lovelace Women’s Hospital. TheUniversity of New Mexico Hospitalprovides a children’s hospital, burn center, and level I pediatric and adult trauma centers. It’s also the home of an advanced primary stroke center, not to mention the biggest group of adult and pediatric specialty programs in the state.

How much do nurses make in Albuquerque, NM?

  • Nurses in Albuquerque make an average salary of$75,050.
  • For some people, in the 90th percentile, salaries can reach as high as$97,050.
  • Cost of Living Index (COLI):128
  • The cost of living in Albuquerque is21% cheaper than the average of all the cities in our study.
  • The adjusted average income based on its affordability raises a nurse’s pay to$95,042.

7. San Francisco, California

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San Francisco has been called the cultural, commercial, and financial center of Northern California. Covering an area of about 47 square miles, this city welcomes all who pass through its Golden Gates. San Francisco is perhaps most famous for its Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz, Coit Tower, and Fisherman’s Wharf. Of course, don’t forget about the cable cars!

The city also maintains a diversifiedservice economy. In 2016, approximately 12% of workers found employment in education and healthcare. Other high-ranking sectors included professional business services at 27%, leisure and hospitality at 14%, and government services at 13%. Plus, as of 2017, San Francisco County was named the 7th highest-income county in the United States, thanks to a per capita personal income of $119,868. The cost of living is expensive in this city, but San Francisco is also one of the highest paying cities for registered nurses.

How much do nurses make in San Francisco, CA?

  • Nurses in San Francisco make an average salary of$138,000.
  • For some people, in the 90th percentile, salaries can reach as high as$196,450 or more.
  • Cost of Living Index (COLI):240
  • The cost of living in San Francisco is48% more expensive than the average of all the cities in our study.
  • The adjusted average income based on its affordability lowers a nurse’s pay to$93,206.

8. Santa Barbara, California

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Santa Barbara is a beautiful city on the coast of California. The Santa Ynez Mountains rise in the background, while oceanic views and pleasant weather create an ideal atmosphere for living, playing, and working. Often called the American Riviera, Santa Barbara is also known for its sense of community, rich agricultural land, plentiful wineries, and many tourism hotspots. Don’t miss its upscale boutiques and restaurants, not to mention the Mediterranean-style buildings in downtown!

In addition to serving as a popular tourist and resort destination, Santa Barbara has established a diverse economy, including large sectors in education, technology, healthcare, finance, agriculture, and manufacturing. The Cottage Health Organization is one of its top employers, and the Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital maintains a Level I Trauma Center training institution with resident physicians in internal medicine, surgery, and radiology. Medical students also complete rotations at Cottage Hospital.

How much do nurses make in Santa Barbara, CA?

  • Nurses in Santa Barbara make an average salary of$108,940.
  • For some people, in the 90th percentile, salaries can reach as high as$148,470 or more.
  • Cost of Living Index (COLI):190
  • The cost of living in Santa Barbara is17% more expensive than the average of all the cities in our study.
  • The adjusted average income based on its affordability lowers a nurse’s pay to$92,941.

9. Houston, Texas

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A grand metropolis in Texas, Houston extends to Galveston Bay and is often linked to the Space Center Houston (one of NASA’s visitor centers). The downtown area features several highlights, such as the Theater District, the Houston Grand Opera, and the upscale Historic District, which offers 19th-century architecture amid ritzy restaurants.

Without a doubt, Houston is a popular choice for healthcare professionals. The city is home to the Texas Medical Center (TMC), which contains the world’s largest concentration of healthcare and research institutions. They provide patient and preventive care while employing more than 73,600 people. The Texas Medical Center houses the outstandingM.D. Anderson Cancer Center, and (reportedly) more heart surgeries are performed at the TMC than anywhere else in the world.

How much do nurses make in Houston, TX?

  • Nurses in Houston make an average salary of$81,350.
  • For some people, in the 90th percentile, salaries can reach as high as$103,740 or more.
  • Cost of Living Index (COLI):144
  • The cost of living in Houston is11% cheaper than the average of all the cities in our study.
  • The adjusted average income based on its affordability raises a nurse’s pay to$91,574.

10. Greensboro, North Carolina

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Greensboro is the third-most populous city in North Carolina. The cost of living is cheaper than the average of the other cities in our study by a whopping25%. Not only are prices more affordable, Greensboro also has room for plenty of family fun. The Greensboro Science Center allows visitors to marvel at red pandas, sharks, and a hands-on museum. Plus, the nearby Bog Garden is a wetlands area filled with flowers, birds, and an elevated boardwalk.

In the city’s 2010 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report, two health systems ranked as some of the largest employers in Greensboro. Cone Health ranked second with about 7,218 employees, and High Point Regional Health System ranked seventh with about 2,320 employees. The BLS has also indicated that education and health service ranks fourth in the top ten industries of Greensboro, creating about 48,400 jobs overall.

How much do nurses make in Greensboro, NC?

  • Nurses in Greensboro make an average salary of$68,300.
  • For some people, in the 90th percentile, salaries can reach as high as$93,370 or more.
  • Cost of Living Index (COLI):121
  • The cost of living in Greensboro is25% cheaper than the average of all the cities in our study.
  • The adjusted average income based on its affordability raises a nurse’s pay to$91,498.

11. San Diego, California

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San Diego is a coastal city that’s known for its many beaches, extensive parks, and pleasant climate. It’s also famous for its many attractions like the San Diego Zoo, numerous art galleries, museums, and gardens. A deep-water harbor contains a large naval fleet within San Diego. Plus, the USS Midway—an aircraft carrier turned into a museum—is open to the public.

In addition to the city’s long association with theUnited States Navy, San Diego recently emerged as a healthcare and biotechnology development center. According to a 2016 comprehensive financial report, Sharp HealthCare ranks third among the city’s top employers. Scripps Health and Kaiser Permanente also ranked in this top-ten list.

While the city’s cost of living may be more expensive, the average nurse in San Diego earns more over than $100,000 a year. With its ideal location and budding health sector, San Diego is a city to watch.

How much do nurses make in San Diego, CA?

  • Nurses in San Diego make an average salary of$104,860.
  • For some people, in the 90th percentile, salaries can reach as high as$147,930 or more.
  • Cost of Living Index (COLI):187
  • The cost of living in San Diego is15% more expensive than the average of all the cities in our study.
  • The adjusted average income based on its affordability lowers a nurse’s pay to$90,896.

12. Spokane, Washington

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Spokane, the “Lilac City,” is situated within Washington state. It’s located near Spokane River, west of the Rocky Mountain foothills, and 92 miles south of the Canada-U.S. border. Visitors are often attracted to Riverfront Park, where cable cars offer mesmerizing views of Spokane Falls.

This city also houses the Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture. It explores the area’s history using exhibits on art, culture, and Native American heritage. Spokane’s economy has seen success in the medical and health science fields as well. In 2013, the top employers in Spokane were theState of Washington,Spokane Public Schools,and the Providence Sacred Heart Medical Center and Children’s Hospital.

How much do nurses make in Spokane, WA?

  • Nurses in Spokane make an average salary of$80,070.
  • For some people, in the 90th percentile, salaries can reach as high as$107,950 or more.
  • Cost of Living Index (COLI):143
  • The cost of living in Spokane is12% cheaper than the average of all the cities in our study.
  • The adjusted average income based on its affordability raises a nurse’s pay to$90,763.

13. Tucson, Arizona

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If you like sunny cities, Tucson has roughly 350 days of sunshine per year! The area is said to inspire a sense of freedom among those who visit. Given the mountainous views and desert blooms, it makes sense that some might see the city as an oasis.

Tucson is the one of the most populous cities in Arizona. Along with Phoenix, it anchors the Arizona Sun Corridor (i.e. a mega region of five metropolitan areas). Banner Health is the state’s biggest private employer, accounting for more than 39,000 employees in 2016. Education and health services is also one of the highest-ranking sectors for employment within the state of Arizona. The low cost of living and average nursing salary makes Tucson an attractive prospect for nurses.

How much do nurses make in Tucson, AZ?

  • Nurses in Tucson make an average salary of$74,570.
  • For some people, in the 90th percentile, salaries can reach as high as$95,490 or more.
  • Cost of Living Index (COLI):136
  • The cost of living in Tucson is16% cheaper than the average of all the cities in our study.
  • The adjusted average income based on its affordability raises a nurse’s pay to$88,879.

14. Honolulu, Hawaii

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Honolulu, the capital and largest city of the state of Hawaii, is a major hub for international business and military defense. It’s also known for hosting a number of east-west and Pacific cultures, cuisine, and traditions. Located on the south shore of Oahu, Honolulu offers a center for dining and nightlife, not to mention various high-rise hotels, the iconic crescent beach, and Diamond Head crater cresting the horizon.

Some companies based in Honolulu include Hawaii Pacific Health and The Queen’s Health Systems. Even though cost of living is more expensive in this city, experienced nurses can make over $132,000 per year.

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How much do nurses make in Honolulu, HI?

  • Nurses in Honolulu make an average salary of$106,550.
  • For some people, in the 90th percentile, salaries can reach as high as$132,160 or more.
  • Cost of Living Index (COLI):200
  • The cost of living in Honolulu is23% more expensive than the average of all the cities in our study.
  • The adjusted average income based on its affordability lowers a nurse’s pay to$86,357.

15. Detroit, Michigan

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Detroit is the largest city in Michigan as well as the largest American city on the United States-Canada border. Regarded as a notable cultural center, Detroit is known for its contributions to art, architecture, and design. It’s also known as the “Motor City” for its connection to the auto industry. Plus, music lovers can rejoice: Detroit is the birthplace of Motown Records!

When it comes to healthcare, there are more than a dozen major hospitals in the city. Some of these include theDetroit Medical Center(DMC),Henry Ford Health System,St. John Health System, and the John D. Dingell VA Medical Center. The DMC is the biggest private employer in the City of Detroit. Like Tucson, Detroit’s cost of living is significantly cheaper than the average of the cities in our study. This affordability raises a nurse’s average salary by more than 10%.

How much do nurses make in Detroit, MI?

  • Nurses in Detroit make an average salary of$75,810.
  • For some people, in the 90th percentile, salaries can reach as high as$98,810 or more.
  • Cost of Living Index (COLI):143
  • The cost of living in Detroit is12% cheaper than the average of all the cities in our study.
  • The adjusted average income based on its affordability raises a nurse’s pay to$85,934.

16. Boise, Idaho

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Niche said it best: “Boise is one of the best places to live in Idaho. Living in Boise offers residents a dense suburban feel, and most residents own their homes. InBoise,there are a lot of bars, coffee shops, and parks. Many families and young professionalsliveinthe city.”

Boise is both the capital and most populous city within the state of Idaho. The Boise River Greenbelt offers a series of tree-lined trails and parks that hug the water’s edge. In downtown, you’ll find contemporary works and a sculpture garden in the Boise Art Museum. If you’re a history junkie, you’ll also find 19th-century prison cells, gallows, and historic weaponry in the Old Idaho Penitentiary.

Some of the biggest employers in Idaho include St. Luke’s Health Systems and the Saint Alphonsus Health System. Not only can nurses enjoy this regional hotspot for jazz, theater, and indie music, with enough experience they can also earn over $93,000 per year.

How much do nurses make in Boise, ID?

  • Nurses in Boise make an average salary of$71,530.
  • For some people, in the 90th percentile, salaries can reach as high as$93,900 or more.
  • Cost of Living Index (COLI):135
  • The cost of living in Boise is17% cheaper than the average of all the cities in our study.
  • The adjusted average income based on its affordability raises a nurse’s pay to$85,888.

17. Charlottesville, Virginia

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Charlottesville serves as a gateway to the Shenandoah National Park. It’s the heart of the Charlottesville metropolitan area, which combines the counties of Albemarle, Buckingham, Fluvanna, Greene, and Nelson. This city is known for being the home of two U.S. presidents: Thomas Jefferson and James Monroe. It is also home to the University of Virginia and a section of the Blue Ridge Mountains.

Due to several historical sites, Charlottesville attracts thousands of tourists every year. The economy is also rooted in healthcare, as its largest employers include the University of Virginia Medical Center and the UVA Health Services Foundation. This unique city boasts a cheaper cost of living and an average nursing salary of about $75,000 per year.

How much do nurses make in Charlottesville, VA?

  • Nurses in Charlottesville make an average salary of$74,560.
  • For some people, in the 90th percentile, salaries can reach as high as$104,040 or more.
  • Cost of Living Index (COLI):141
  • The cost of living in Charlottesville is13% cheaper than the average of all the cities in our study.
  • The adjusted average income based on its affordability raises a nurse’s pay to$85,716.

18. Providence, Rhode Island

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Providence, the capital city of Rhode Island, has roots in American art and silver. It’s home to renowned Brown University as well as the Rhode Island School of Design. Visitors will come across 18th- and 19th-century homes on the streets of College Hill. Waterplace Park serves as the backdrop for the WaterFire art installation, which lights up the nearby tidal basin during summer and special events.

Today, Providence houses eight hospitals and seven institutions of higher learning, which have redirected the city’s economy toward service industries. One of their primary hospitals isRhode Island Hospital, the largest generalacute carehospital in the state, not to mention theLevel I Trauma Centerfor Rhode Island, Southeastern Massachusetts, and parts of Connecticut.

Nurses in Providence make an average salary of about $82,000 a year, while the highest paid RNs can earn salaries reaching $105,000 (or more) each year.

How much do nurses make in Providence, RI?

  • Nurses in Providence make an average salary of$82,170.
  • For some people, in the 90th percentile, salaries can reach as high as$105,450 or more.
  • Cost of Living Index (COLI):156
  • The cost of living in Providence is4% cheaper than the average of all the cities in our study.
  • The adjusted average income based on its affordability raises a nurse’s pay to$85,382.

19. Memphis, Tennessee

25 Highest Paying Cities for Nurses in 2022 | Unitek College (19)

Memphis is a city in Tennessee that can be found along the Mississippi River. It’s the second most populous city in the state, and acts as the anchor of West Tennesseeand the greaterMid-South region. The heart and soul of Memphis truly belongs to music.

In fact, the area has become quite famous for its strains of blues, soul, and rock ‘n’ roll. Major stars like Elvis Presley and Johnny Cash recorded albums at the famous Sun Studio. Some popular attractions include Presley’s Graceland mansion, the Rock ‘n’ Soul Museum, the Blues Hall of Fame, and the Stax Museum of American Soul Music.

The Memphis region also supports various hospitals, including the Methodist and Baptist Memorial health systems, two major private hospitals in the country. Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare is the biggest healthcare provider in the Memphis region and the fourth-largest employer as of 2018.Modern Healthcaremagazine also ranked Methodist Healthcarein their list of “Best Places to Work.” In addition, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital resides in Memphis.

How much do nurses make in Memphis, TN?

  • Nurses in Memphis make an average salary of$66,730.
  • For some people, in the 90th percentile, salaries can reach as high as$87,550 or more.
  • Cost of Living Index (COLI):127
  • The cost of living in Memphis is22% cheaper than the average of all the cities in our study.
  • The adjusted average income based on its affordability raises a nurse’s pay to$85,171.

20. Los Angeles, California

25 Highest Paying Cities for Nurses in 2022 | Unitek College (20)

With an estimated population of nearly four million people, Los Angeles is the most populous city in California. It’s also the second most populous city in the United States (New York City takes the number one spot). Los Angeles can be called the cultural and commercial center of Southern California. Known for its Mediterranean climate, ethnic diversity, and entertainment industry, the city is nothing short of a sprawling metropolis.

Los Angeles is located beside the Pacific Ocean and sits within a basin. Mountains crest the horizon, as do tall, impressive buildings. Some of its best-known attractions include the iconic Hollywood sign, Hollywood Boulevard, the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and the TCL Chinese Theatre.

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In a 2018 financial report, the largest non-government employers in LA were ranked. Kaiser Permanente reached the number one spot with about 37,468 employees. Providence Health and Services Southern California ranked fourth with about 15,952 employees. In addition, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center ranked seventh with about 14,903 employees. Given the size of LA’s healthcare industry, it’s no wonder some nurses can earn as much as $149,690.

How much do nurses make in Los Angeles, CA?

  • Nurses in Los Angeles make an average salary of$106,190.
  • For some people, in the 90th percentile, salaries can reach as high as$149,690 or more.
  • Cost of Living Index (COLI):203
  • The cost of living in Los Angeles is25% more expensive than the average of all the cities in our study.
  • The adjusted average income based on its affordability lowers a nurse’s pay to$84,794.

21. Cincinnati, Ohio

25 Highest Paying Cities for Nurses in 2022 | Unitek College (21)

As the economic and cultural center of Ohio, Cincinnati is also the fastest-growing economic power in the Midwestern United States.

Cincinnati currently houses three major sports teams: TheCincinnati RedsofMajor League Baseball; theCincinnati Bengalsof theNational Football League; andFC CincinnatiofMajor League Soccer.

The city also features historic architecture. In fact, some structures have stayed intact for about 200 years. You can also visit the Over-the-Rhine district, which is well known for its 19th-century architecture. Additionally, you can plan a day trip to the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden. History lovers might enjoy the Cincinnati Museum, while art fans could tour the Cincinnati Art Museum (works are displayed that span 6,000 years).

Regarding healthcare, theUniversity of Cincinnati Medical Centeris one of Ohio’s leading institutes for community health. The relatively low cost of living, historical aspects of the city, and economic-powerhouse status makes Cincinnatione of the best cities for nurses.

How much do nurses make in Cincinnati, OH?

  • Nurses in Cincinnati make an average salary of$70,370.
  • For some people, in the 90th percentile, salaries can reach as high as$95,470 or more.
  • Cost of Living Index (COLI):135
  • The cost of living in Cincinnati is17% cheaper than the average of all the cities in our study.
  • The adjusted average income based on its affordability raises a nurse’s pay to$84,495.

22. Minneapolis – St. Paul, Minnesota

25 Highest Paying Cities for Nurses in 2022 | Unitek College (22)

Known as the “Twin Cities,” Minneapolis – St. Paul is a major metropolitan area built around the Mississippi, Minnesota, and St. Croix rivers in east-central Minnesota. Minneapolis is the most populous city in Minnesota, and Saint Paul is the state capital. Their unique urban cultures caused an observer to state that “St. Paul is the last city of the East; Minneapolis the first city of the West.”

Thanks to a thriving economy and diverse population, the Twin Cities has a lot to offer healthcare workers. Although cost of living is the same as the average of our other cities, Registered Nurses in Minneapolis – St. Paul still enjoy an average salary of $84,400.

How much do nurses make in Minneapolis – St. Paul, MN?

  • Nurses in Minneapolis – St. Paul make an average salary of$84,400.
  • For some people, in the 90th percentile, salaries can reach as high as$110,230 or more.
  • Cost of Living Index (COLI):162
  • The cost of living in Minneapolis – St. Paul isequal to the average of all the cities in our study.
  • The adjusted average income based on its affordability slightly raises a nurse’s pay to$84,451.

23. San Antonio, Texas

25 Highest Paying Cities for Nurses in 2022 | Unitek College (23)

San Antonio is a city in south-central Texas that’s blanketed by a rich colonial heritage. Visitors and residents alike can visit The Alamo, a Spanish mission that has been preserved as a museum. Along the San Antonio River, you can also enjoy the miles-long River Walk, which is a famous promenade dotted with cafes and shops. There’s also the Tower of the Americas, a 750-foot structure that offers a remarkable view of the city.

San Antonio’s economy focuses mainly onsectors like military,healthcare, government-civil service, and tourism. Several companies are also headquartered in the city, including Carenet Health. Forbes magazine recently included San Antonio on their list of “Best Places for Business and Careers.”

How much do nurses make in San Antonio, TX?

  • Nurses in San Antonio make an average salary of$72,410.
  • For some people, in the 90th percentile, salaries can reach as high as$96,330 or more.
  • Cost of Living Index (COLI):139
  • The cost of living in San Antonio is14% cheaper than the average of all the cities in our study.
  • The adjusted average income based on its affordability raises a nurse’s pay to$84,442.

24. Milwaukee, Wisconsin

25 Highest Paying Cities for Nurses in 2022 | Unitek College (24)

Milwaukee is the largest city in Wisconsin and one of the most densely populated metropolitan areas in the Midwest. It sits on Lake Michigan’s western shore and is known for its breweries, Harley-Davidson Museum, and Milwaukee Public Museum, which includes a large-scale European Village and a re-creation of old Milwaukee.

In this city, the healthcare industry alone makes up 27% of the jobs. The Milwaukee Regional Medical Complex houses health organizations like theChildren’s Hospital of Wisconsin,Froedtert Hospital, BloodCenter of Wisconsin, theRonald McDonald House, Curative Rehabilitation, and theMedical College of Wisconsin.Of course, there are various other health organizations and systems in Milwaukee.

Our study has found that the cost of living in Milwaukee is cheaper than the average of all the other cities. The average Milwaukee nurse can also enjoy a salary of $73k or higher.

How much do nurses make in Milwaukee, WI?

  • Nurses in Milwaukee make an average salary of$73,970.
  • For some people, in the 90th percentile, salaries can reach as high as$97,210 or more.
  • Cost of Living Index (COLI):142
  • The cost of living in Milwaukee is12% cheaper than the average of all the cities in our study.
  • The adjusted average income based on its affordability raises a nurse’s pay to$84,439.

25. Portland, Oregon

25 Highest Paying Cities for Nurses in 2022 | Unitek College (25)

The final destination on our list, Portland is the largest and most populous city in tree-dotted Oregon. It lies on the Columbia and Willamette rivers, sitting in the shadow of snowy Mount Hood. Many are familiar with the parks, bridges, and bicycle paths in the “City of Roses.” Portland is also famous for its eco-friendliness and coffeehouses. Affectionately dubbed a hipster city, Portland offers diverse art, theater, and music scenes.

Residents and visitors alike enjoy warm, dry summers and cool winters. Their relatively mild weather should persist for years to come, as this green city has enacted a comprehensive plan to reduce CO2 emissions. Various hospitals and healthcare systems also operate in Portland.

Although cost of living tends to be higher, the average RN will still earn around $100k each year.

How much do nurses make in Portland, OR?

  • Nurses in Cincinnati make an average salary of$95,420.
  • For some people, in the 90th percentile, salaries can reach as high as$124,390 or more.
  • Cost of Living Index (COLI):185
  • The cost of living in Cincinnati is14% more expensive than the average of all the cities in our study.
  • The adjusted average income based on its affordability lowers a nurse’s pay to$83,607.

Unitek College offers several nursing programs for aspiring nurses, including our BSN programand Vocational Nursing school.

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FAQs

Which city has highest RN salary? ›

San Jose — Sunnyvale — Santa Clara, CA

The San Jose — Sunnyvale — Santa Clara, California, metro area pays RNs the highest-average salary in the United States. According to BLS data, RNs in San Jose — Sunnyvale — Santa Clara metro area make $155,230 annually, which is $72,480 higher than the national average.

Which area of nursing pays the most? ›

The 10 Highest Paid Nursing Jobs in 2022
  • Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist – $202,000.
  • Nursing Administrator – $120,000.
  • Neonatal Intensive Care Nurse – $120,000.
  • General Nurse Practitioner – $118,000.
  • Critical Care Nurse – $118,000.
  • Certified Nurse Midwife – $114,000.
  • Informatics Nurse – $102,000.
5 Sept 2022

Where is the best place for an RN to live? ›

The Top 10 Cities for Nurses
  • Atlanta, Georgia. ...
  • Boston, Massachusetts. ...
  • San Diego, California. ...
  • Los Angeles, California. ...
  • New York City, New York. ...
  • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. ...
  • San Antonio, Texas. ...
  • El Paso, Texas.
28 Jun 2022

What city pays LPN the most? ›

LPN and LVN Average Salary for Major Cities, Metropolitan, and Non-Metropolitan Areas
Area NameEmploymentAnnual mean wage
Yuba City, CA220$62,850
Chico, CA380$62,460
Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA29,230$62,220
Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, CA7,810$62,190
115 more rows

Where are the happiest nurses? ›

One of the happiest nursing jobs is a position as an office nurse. Nurses who work in a physician or other outpatient office provide direct care to patients for chronic or non-urgent conditions.

What is the best state to live in as a nurse? ›

The Best States for Nursing Salaries
RankState NameCost of Living Index
1California142.4
2Nevada113
3Massachusetts108.8
4Washington129.9
6 more rows

What type of nurse is most in demand? ›

Registered nurse (RN)

BSN-prepared nurses are the most sought-after RNs in the job market and can advance to leadership and management roles more quickly than the ASN nurse.

Where is the easiest place to work as a nurse? ›

The 10 Best Places to Work as a Registered Nurse
  • Hospitals. Around 61% of RNs find employment at state, private, and local hospitals. ...
  • Telehealth. ...
  • Emergency Rooms. ...
  • Physicians' Offices. ...
  • Secondary Schools. ...
  • Birthing Centers. ...
  • Public Health Clinics. ...
  • Correctional Facilities.

Where are nurses needed the most right now? ›

Which states have the highest need for nurses?
  • California (274,650)
  • Texas (207,810)
  • New York (180,730)
  • Florida (174,710)
  • Pennsylvania (139,480)

Which state has the best nursing jobs? ›

New York. New York has come in as #1 among the best states for nurses. With a projected increase of almost 17,000 new jobs each year, the ten-year job outlook is 24.63%.

Where do practical nurses make the most money? ›

Highest-Paid Licensed Practical Nurses By State
RankState90th Percentile
1Hawaii$71,000
2Rhode Island$84,000
3Massachusetts$83,000
4Connecticut$84,000
46 more rows
2 Aug 2022

Why do nurses in California make so much? ›

High demand, the high cost of living and union power underlie the higher salaries of California's registered nurses. Burger said the nurse's union has also played a role in assuring that nurses have access to pension plans and that they retire with health benefits.

What states pay the most for licensed practical nurses? ›

In Alaska, only 330 LPNs are employed; in Massachusetts, that number surpasses 14,700, while in the Sunshine State, over 71,320 LPNs were employed as of May 2020.
...
Licensed Practical Nurse average salaries in every state*
StateAnnual mean wageHourly mean wage
California$64,090$30.81
Colorado$54,310$26.11
48 more rows
5 Oct 2021

What is the best area of nursing to work in? ›

The top 4 highest paying nursing jobs
  • Legal nurse consultant. ...
  • Forensic nurse consultant. ...
  • Public health nurse. ...
  • Occupational nurse. ...
  • Medical writer. ...
  • Physical therapist. ...
  • Psychiatric nurse practitioner. ...
  • Medical or pharmaceutical sales.

What is the least stressful nursing job? ›

The 10 Least Stressful Nursing Jobs This Year (2022)
  • Nurse Educators. ...
  • Institutional Nurses. ...
  • Research Nurses. ...
  • Public Health Nurses. ...
  • Occupational Health Nurses. ...
  • Case Management Nurses. ...
  • Home Health Nurses. ...
  • Clinic Nurses.
6 Jul 2022

What state pays nurses less? ›

The Lowest-Paying States for RNs
  • South Dakota ($60,540)
  • Alabama ($61,920)
  • Mississippi ($63,130)
  • Iowa ($64,990)
  • Arkansas ($65,810)

Which state is the hardest to become a nurse? ›

Whether you're a first-time travel nurse or a seasoned veteran, the matter of obtaining licensure in a new state you'd like to work in is always a hurdle.
...
5 States that Take Longest to Get an RN License In
  1. Ohio (4-6 months) ...
  2. 2. California (3-6 months) ...
  3. Maryland (10 weeks) ...
  4. Maine (8-10 weeks) ...
  5. Alaska (8 weeks)
4 Oct 2018

What state has the highest shortage of nurses? ›

California has the worst nursing shortage in the United States. It's predicted that by 2030, California will be in need of over 44,000 nurses. Other states with major hospital staff shortages include New Mexico, Vermont, Rhode Island, West Virginia, and Arizona.

What type of nurse is the hardest? ›

Most Stressful Nursing Positions
  • Intensive Care Unit nurses (ICU) ICU is an extremely high-pressure environment and these nurses work with patients who have significant injuries and disease with added morbidity risks. ...
  • Emergency Department nurses. ...
  • Neonatal ICU. ...
  • OR nursing. ...
  • Oncology Nursing. ...
  • Psychiatric Nursing.
27 Jan 2021

Who are the happiest nurses? ›

Let's take a look at some nursing specialties where nurses report being happiest.
  • School Nurse. ...
  • Labor and Delivery Nurse. ...
  • Case Management Nurse. ...
  • Nurse Educator. ...
  • Parish Nurse. ...
  • Travel Nurse.
26 Aug 2022

Which nursing is the most stressful? ›

The most stressful nursing jobs include ICU nurse, ER nurse, and NICU nurse. In these roles, nurses work in an intense environment with high stakes. They manage emergency situations and care for critically ill patients. Other stressful nursing jobs include OR nursing, oncology nursing, and psychiatric nursing.

What type of nurse gets paid the least? ›

The lowest salary for a nurse is for licensed nurse practitioners (LPNs). The median salary for LPNs is about $47,000. LPNs are some of the lowest-paid nurses because it has the lowest educational requirements within the nursing field. To practice as an LPN, a person does not need a college degree.

What state has highest RN salary? ›

California tops our list of the highest-paying states, where registered nurses make $124,000 per year on average. Following it is Hawaii, at $106,530, and Oregon at $98,6300. Washington, D.C., while not technically a state, also ranks among the top-paying U.S. regions with an average RN salary of $98,540.

Can you live comfortably as a RN? ›

The short answer Heck YES. the longer answer: One of the nicest things about being a Nurse is that you can- within reason- also work overtime. So if there is something you want- you can actually earn a bit more money and put it aside for that.

Where is nursing going in the future? ›

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects 9% job growth for registered nurses (RNs) and 45% job growth for nurse practitioners, nurse midwives, and nurse anesthetists between 2020 and 2030. Both percentages are significantly higher than the 8% average growth projected for all professions for the same period.

How can a RN make more money? ›

The Best Ways Nurses Can Increase Their Income
  1. 1 Earn an Advanced Degree.
  2. 2 Get Certified.
  3. 3 Consider Management or Leadership Positions.
  4. 4 Look into Per Diem Shifts.
  5. 5 Network.
  6. 6 Start a Blog or Do Freelance Healthcare Writing.
  7. 7 Become a CPR Instructor.
  8. 8 Become an Immunization Nurse.
7 Oct 2021

Which hospital pays nurses the most in California? ›

Top companies for Registered Nurses in California
  • Gento. 4.4 $90.16per hour. 33 reviews481 salaries reported.
  • Stanford Health Care. 3.9 $82.13per hour. 840 reviews85 salaries reported.
  • John Muir Health. 3.9 $78.95per hour. ...
  • Aya Healthcare. 4.2 $74.12per hour. ...
  • UCSF Medical Center. 4.1 $71.92per hour. ...
  • Show more companies.
3 Nov 2022

Can a nurse live comfortably in California? ›

Nurses can live comfortably in California because it's one of the states with the highest demand for registered nurses. If you want to live comfortably in Cali, you need to know which cities have the highest cost of living and which types of nurses make the most money.

Who get paid the most RN or LPN? ›

Let's compare their average salaries to find out who makes more LPNs or RNs. According to March 2022 data, registered nurses earn more than licensed practical nurses, making $34 per hour. Meanwhile, LPNs make $22 per hour. This means that the average annual salary of an RN is $70,335, while that of an LPN is $46,282.

Where is the best place to work as a LPN? ›

Where Do LPNs Work?
  • Nursing Homes. The most common workplace for LPNs is in a nursing home. ...
  • Hospitals. Hospitals are the next most common employer for LPNs at 14%, according to the BLS. ...
  • Physicians' Offices. ...
  • Home Healthcare Facilities. ...
  • Government Facilities. ...
  • Schools. ...
  • Clinics. ...
  • Hospice.
12 Nov 2021

What is the most a LPN can make an hour? ›

While ZipRecruiter is seeing hourly wages as high as $37.98 and as low as $14.18, the majority of LPN wages currently range between $19.95 (25th percentile) to $27.64 (75th percentile) across the United States.

What state are nurses the happiest? ›

Best States for Nurses Satisfaction and Happiness
  • Minnesota (Quality of life ranking #2, Hospital rating by nurses 86%)
  • Wisconsin (Quality of life ranking #3, Hospital rating by nurses 88%)
  • Oregon (Quality of life ranking #18, Hospital rating by nurses inconclusive)
15 Feb 2022

Which country is best for nurses to work and live? ›

New Zealand

It has a high quality of life, and this is reflected in their average salary which floats around $35.000 per year for private-sector employees. Nursing in New Zealand comes with a competitive starting salary of $32.000, with salaries reaching $47.000 with experience.

Which area of nursing is the least stressful? ›

The 10 Least Stressful Nursing Jobs This Year (2022)
  • Nurse Educators. ...
  • Institutional Nurses. ...
  • Research Nurses. ...
  • Public Health Nurses. ...
  • Occupational Health Nurses. ...
  • Case Management Nurses. ...
  • Home Health Nurses. ...
  • Clinic Nurses.
6 Jul 2022

Is UK or Germany better for nurses? ›

Nurses in the UK receive on average higher salaries than in Germany. The average ranges from £22,128 to £28,746 (25,373 EUR – 32,961 EUR), and £35,000 – £45,000 for senior nurses, when the very common annual salary for German nurses is 27,600 EUR with an increase to 42,000 EUR for senior professionals.

Where is the best place to be a nurse in the world? ›

Norway, a Scandinavian country known as the land of Fjords, has one of the highest standards of living in the world as well as job satisfaction for nurses. While the average salary is $46,050, nurses have the ability to earn upwards of $100,000 depending on experience and specialty.

Which country have shortage of nurses? ›

There is a global shortage of health workers, in particular nurses and midwives, who represent more than 50% of the current shortage in health workers. The largest needs-based shortages of nurses and midwives are in South East Asia and Africa.

Is it better to be a nurse in UK or USA? ›

US nurses generally have a lot more autonomy than UK nurses. There is no separate licensing body for nurse practitioners. Pay in the UK (as mentioned above) is dreadfully low. Starting salary for a band 5 nurse is approximately $28,000.

What type of nurses are happiest? ›

Let's take a look at some nursing specialties where nurses report being happiest.
  • School Nurse. ...
  • Labor and Delivery Nurse. ...
  • Case Management Nurse. ...
  • Nurse Educator. ...
  • Parish Nurse. ...
  • Travel Nurse.
26 Aug 2022

What is the most chill nursing job? ›

9 Lower-stress nursing jobs
  1. Nurse educator. Nurse educators are medical professionals who train nurses and aspiring nurses. ...
  2. Long-term care nurse. ...
  3. Nurse administrator. ...
  4. Clinical research nurse. ...
  5. School or summer camp nurse. ...
  6. Clinic nurse. ...
  7. Nurse informatics. ...
  8. Lactation consultant nurse.
2 Dec 2019

Which European country pays highest salary for nurses? ›

Some of these include: High Salary – Nursing jobs in Europe offer some of the highest salaries in the world. You can expect to earn between £25,000 and £60,000 per year. Luxemburg is ruling the list of highest paying European countries for R.N. with an average annual salary of $91000.

Which European country is best for nurses? ›

10 Top European countries That Need Nurses
  • Italy. Asides from the fact that you have to take a language proficiency test in the local language (Italian) to get the certification to work as a nurse, Italy is a great country to work in as a nurse. ...
  • United Kingdom. ...
  • Ireland. ...
  • Germany. ...
  • Luxembourg. ...
  • France. ...
  • Denmark. ...
  • Netherlands.
21 Jan 2022

How many hours do nurses work in Germany? ›

Nurses in Germany usually work 38-40 hours per week which involves 7-9 hour shifts. In most cases, they will also have shifts during the night or on the weekend and on holidays but not more than 5 days a week.

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