When inquiring what the average yearly salary is for a travel nurse, the answer is : it depends. Many travel nurses do not work assignment to assignment, but instead take a month off in between to re-group. Why? Mostly because they can and have the freedom to do so. Also, salaries vary on the different parts of the country. So when figuring out the pay for travel nurses, it is better to ask what the average hourly wage is, instead of what is the average yearly salary.
So the question at hand, what is the average hourly wage of a travel nurse? $29-$40/ hour (payscale.com) The coasts being the higher end of the average, since they have higher costs of living.
There are some things to consider when negotiating your pay with the travel nurse company. Some companies might provide a higher wage per hour, but may not offer benefits like paid housing, travel reimbursement and/or health insurance. Those that offer lower wage per hour, usually offer more benefits, which keep you from paying more out of pocket and benefit you more in the long run. So while you may be making less an hour, you actually would be going home with more money. These are things you need to make sure to ask and confirm with your recruiter, before you sign your contract.
Remember; do not brush off an assignment because it has a lower salary. Be sure to inquire why it has a lower salary and what benefits are included.