I want to ask your opinions about one issue, especially Germans since the topic is about the German job market.

A company invites to a face to face interview after an application in Germany. I need 4-5 hours by train to go there.

They clarify in their email that they will not reimburse the travel cost for me. Is it normal? Because from my perspective, it is creating a negative impression from the beginning. What do you think?

  • 2
    I’d decline and look for a job elsewhere. If a company is that cheap and won’t reimburse you that 300 EUR, they’re probably cheap later.
    – Simon
    Dec 26, 2018 at 23:03

2 Answers 2


If it's a 4-5 journey by train, the tickets will cost you something about 300 EUR. (Less if you buy in advance the kind of ticket you can't return. But then you can't return the tickets and I've already had companies cancelling the day before the interview, so this doesn't sound like a viable option).

I would thank them for the information and write that in this case I need to withdraw my application.

Unless you have so much money / the job is so important to you that 300 EUR doesn't make you any difference. But honestly, in that case, I would invest in some better clothes/ changes in the look (dentist services, hairdresser...) or books/ resources/ courses to prepare, not a job interview at a company that doesn't respect candidates.

I had a situation like that in summer. It was a global leader, a huge company. They invited me and I was completely shocked to discover they don't cover train costs. After my withdrawal, they suggested a skype interview. We had it on the day I was to come to their headquarters. It resulted that the new employee was to report to two people who worked part-time (they had a shared position). The interview was with just one person, the other had a vacation and didn't even know about my existence. They also wanted to pay me much less than my salary expectations. Had I gone there I would have wasted 300 EUR and a day of PTO for a pointless interview.

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    Yes, suggest a Skype interview or if you currently receive unemployment benefits, ask the Bundesagentur für Arbeit whether they'd be willing to cover your travel expense. Dec 25, 2018 at 4:26

No. In Germany the travel costs are normally supposed to be carried by the employer, and AFAIU mandatory unless explicitly excluded.

I would probably remove a company not willing to do so from my list.

  • 2
    "In Germany the travel costs are supposed (AFAIU mandatory) to be carried by the employer" In general yes, but there's one exception: If the hiring company tells the person to be interviewed beforehand i.e. normally with their interview invitation, that they won't cover travel costs, then it is legal to do so. Dec 24, 2018 at 21:21

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