States with Jobs
Winter 2019 is showing our lowest availability yet. The travel COTA market has historically been very competitive, but this is lower than we have seen all year. In the Spring of this year, there were about 46 jobs nationwide. By Fall, the market had dropped to about 27 open positions. Today, we are now down to 3. Yes, 3. Meaning only a lucky few will get to travel this season.
Flexibility is always the name of the COTA travel game.
Not travel! You will have a huge risk of cancelations even after you pack, get housing, and move. You will have no job stability. It's better to try as hard as you can to find any COTA job (perm or travel) to keep experience on your resume until the market turns around.
Get experience before you travel - As a travel Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant, it is recommended that you have at least two years of experience before you travel. If you are a new grad, it is next to impossible to land a travel assignment until you have some experience under your belt. You also risk getting placed in tough (non-new grad appropriate) assignments, contract cancellations, and companies underpaying you and pushing the bill rate down.
Be nice to your recruiters - Your specialty is not in demand, no matter where you are looking to travel to. Recruiters have to work 20x as hard to get you in a placement. Be patient, flexible, and be a great communicator and show up as a kind and professional partner to them, so they want to go the extra mile for you!
Extend - If you’re already in a travel position you like, see if you can extend!
It is a cold, cold winter! Unfortunately, there aren’t many states we would be happy to recommend for you. The COTA travel market has been consistently competitive the last year or more and this is the lowest availability all year. That means significantly less jobs and you need many more submissions for landing a travel job. It is an extra hard specialty for new grads to try to be travelers.
When one might hear travel therapy companies say, “We staff in all 50 states”.
What this means: The agency is legally set up with the ability to staff in all 50 states.
What this does not mean: The agency has jobs in all 50 states.
We surveyed dozens of companies to create this map. It represents a large percentage of the travel COTA job market. Across all of the USA there are around 5 open travel COTA jobs at one time and most states have no jobs at all. California is typically the most promising state to get a license due to its travel job availability, but even the California market has dried up. Be patient, be flexible, and hang in there! We hope it picks up again next year
SNF will most likely always have the market share of jobs, but it’s still a great idea to gain experience in many different settings. Many people ‘in the know’ are whispering about home health becoming a growing area for jobs in 2020 because of the Medicare payment models that shifted in October 2019.
Nomadicare bases all these estimates on this page from information provided by dozens of our awesome partners. It is here to give you our very best estimate on the job market this quarter! We are cheering for you. Bookmark this page - we update the stats every season!
“I am not sure when the COTA job market will be existent again - since doing this job for about 4 years, it's always been a steady decline in jobs.”
“This market is just cold. You need to be open to the entire country for opportunities.”
“Be open to everything and have multiple licenses. 98% of the jobs will not wait on a license.”
Not travel this season. But if you really really want to try ... Join a yoga class and get flexible! And maybe meditate while you’re at it, be as patient as possible!
The best chances of landing travel COTA positions goes to those who:
Simply tell us where you want to go, and we'll get you there! Each match comes with your own dedicated Nomadicare expert to help you along the way. Get answers to your questions via text, email, phone, or video, all for free. Matches come directly to your inbox, no app to download or password to remember, it's really that easy.