Traveling Pharmacy Technician Salary

A travel pharmacy technician performs the same duties as any other pharmacy technician. The main difference is that they travel from one pharmacy to another, based on staffing needs. In addition to their regular tasks, a travel pharmacy technician also mentors new pharmacy technicians and provides assistance wherever necessary.

These positions are typically short-term, ranging from a few weeks to a few months. A travel pharmacy technician may work for the same chain of pharmacies in different states or choose to work with an agency to connect with various pharmacies. The job requires careful planning of travel assignments in advance, familiarity with different pharmacy systems, and establishing relationships with a variety of pharmacy network providers.

Now, let’s explore the salary of traveling pharmacy technicians and the factors that influence it.

How Much Do Traveling Pharmacy Technicians Make?

According to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, pharmacy technicians earn an average annual salary of $36,740. The employment market for pharmacy technicians is projected to grow by 5% between 2021 and 2031. With around 43,500 job openings each year, the growth rate is on par with the average rate for all occupations.

Pharmacy technicians working in a hospital setting tend to earn higher salaries compared to other work environments. On average, hospital pharmacists earn $38,270. The average salary in food and beverage stores is $36,090, while the average salary for pharmacists in pharmacies and drug stores is $35,940.

The potential to earn more money as a traveling pharmacy technician lies in several factors. Hourly wages vary by state, and there are also bonuses, commissions, and benefits offered by different companies. Working in high-paying states can result in higher earning potential. Additionally, most companies provide housing for traveling pharmacy technicians, along with reimbursement for food and transportation. The demand for staff in these positions often leads to additional pay incentives.

Typically, contracts for traveling pharmacy technicians range from 6 to 15 weeks. If you enjoy working at a particular facility, you can request to stay there for an extended period.

How to Become a Traveling Pharmacy Technician

Becoming a pharmacy technician doesn’t require as rigorous training as becoming a pharmacist. While many pharmacy technicians opt for certificate programs, it is not mandatory. Undertaking a postsecondary education program or obtaining a postsecondary degree can enhance your skills and knowledge, but it’s not a prerequisite.

Most pharmacy technicians acquire their skills through work experience or on-the-job training. Working as a pharmacy technician serves as a valuable stepping stone towards a career as a pharmacist and facilitates entry into the pharmacy services field.

Educational Requirements

If you’re still in high school, it is beneficial to take biology and chemistry courses as they directly relate to a career in pharmacy. Participating in programs related to this field and shadowing a pharmacy technician on the job can also provide valuable insights.

To qualify as a pharmacy technician, you must have a high school diploma or equivalent on-the-job training. Once you meet the minimum requirements, you can enroll in a certificate program for pharmacy technician training. These programs often include practical training in a pharmacy and require less time compared to obtaining a degree.

Gaining hands-on experience by working in a pharmacy enables you to understand pharmacy systems, learn about patient and drug information, and interact with pharmacy network providers. These are key skills for a traveling pharmacy technician.

Another educational path to consider is pursuing an associate’s degree, which typically takes up to two years to complete. Associate’s degree programs may include internships, allowing students to gain practical experience before taking the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam (PTCE).

Pharmacy technicians usually take their certification exam through recognized boards such as the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB) or the National Healthcareer Association (NHA). The PTCB certification is widely recognized within the field.

Certification Process

While certification is not mandatory in every state, becoming a certified pharmacy technician signifies competence and is recognized by qualified boards. The requirements for practicing as a pharmacy technician vary from state to state. Some states mandate certification, while others require a license. Some states solely require candidates to pass exams, complete continuing education, and pass background checks.

Other Requirements

If you choose to work with an agency, which simplifies the process of finding job openings, some agencies may require at least six months of work experience. Others may even request two years of previous pharmacy experience.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Becoming a Travel Pharmacy Technician

As with any job or position, becoming a travel pharmacy technician has its advantages and disadvantages. It’s essential to weigh both aspects before making a decision. If you try it and don’t enjoy it, you can always go back to being a pharmacy technician in a fixed location.



Being a travel pharmacy technician allows you to choose your travel assignments, giving you control over your vacation time. You can take breaks as needed, preventing burnout and enjoying more downtime than you would in a stationary position.

Competitive Pay

Travel positions often come with significant pay bumps, depending on the demand for staff in the location you are assigned to. Additionally, there are stipends for meals and housing in addition to regular pay.


Working in different healthcare facilities as a travel pharmacy technician exposes you to new skills and techniques. You may have access to specialized training programs, and the experience gained can boost your resume, particularly if you acquire additional skills and certifications.

Ability to Travel

The most significant advantage is the opportunity to travel and explore different parts of the country. You can choose the areas you’d like to visit and decide how long you wish to stay in each location.


Moving from one pharmacy to another allows you to meet professionals who can help advance your career.


Constant Travel

Although traveling is exciting, the novelty can wear off quickly. Frequent travel arrangements can be exhausting and costly. Planning multiple assignments in advance is crucial to meet deadlines and ensure sufficient rest days.

Lack of Stability

Being a travel pharmacy technician means you won’t have a permanent home. You may often find yourself far from loved ones, depending on your assignments. Uprooting your life every few weeks or months can make it challenging to maintain relationships and have a social life.


Do I need to be licensed in every state?

Licensing requirements vary by state. Some states only require national certification, which demonstrates that you are certified by a recognized board. Other states accept a valid pharmacy technician license from any state. Some states may require both a state license and national certification.

Ensure you check the specific regulations of the state you plan to work in.

Are travel pharmacy technicians needed in hospitals?

There are positions available for travel pharmacy technicians in hospital pharmacy settings. However, these positions often require prior pharmacy experience in a hospital environment. Having skills in sterile compounding and IV distribution can enhance your resume for hospital positions.

Final Thoughts

If you aspire to have a career in pharmacy that allows you to travel, exploring travel pharmacy technician jobs is an excellent idea. The salary prospects are just as good, if not better, than those for regular pharmacy technicians.

For more information on becoming a travel pharmacy technician, visit DHPL Travels.

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