As my currents employer financial situation is not very stable, I was looking through my resumes etc. just in case. I noticed that I have have 5 years work experience in 3 companies and an university degree but no recommendation letter. I got my jobs until now by knowing someone important in the company, beeing at the right time at the right place and by oral recommendation from the former boss and working on a similar project.
The first employment is a summer job for multiple years in my field from 5 years ago and I don't know how they would react if I asked them or they would remember me. (They were happy with me but then were restructering)
The second job is about 4 years ago and ended with bankruptcy of the company. My boss was fond of my and very pleased of my results. I am sure he would write me any reference letter I wish but he always expects favors (like providing him work for free which would normally cost him hundreds of Euros, giving him contacts of people with influence and recommending him to them with partly true statements or delivering him not open available information).
The current company is only nice as long as you are nice to them and they don't think, it is nice when I resignate (especially as I have an important role in the company) and asking them for a reference letter sets there alarms off. So I don't expect a good reference letter from them, even they go bankrupt. I don't have coworkers I could give as reference person because those aren't people with good social skills and professional appearence.
So how important would it be to get a reference letter (and from which)? Or should I just put no recommendation letter to my applications?
I am living in central Europe and working in IT.