I applied for a new job about 6 months ago and after a fairly quick round of interview they (potential new employer) got back to me today. I am happy they have asked me permission to contact my referees now which means they are considering me for the position, however I have a problem.
My current employer has decided to send me for professional development training in Japan after which I will be bonded to my current employer for an year. I have tried to put this off for as long as I could however I am the only one left in my department who doesn't have this training and so I accepted to go since I also did not hear from my potential new employer for so long and had lost all hope.
Now when I have to leave for my training this weekend, the potential new employer is talking to me again and it seems like they want to hire me. This is all unofficial though and they still haven't given me a contract letter. I really want to work for the new employer but I am unsure of the their time frames as they have dragged their recruitment process for so long and there is also a chance I might not get the job. But I do not want to get bonded to my current employer after I finish the training and miss out on the new potential offer.
My airplane tickets and hotel bookings are already done by my current employer however I can still cancel but I am not sure if I will get the new job or how long will it take for the potential new employer to go into the next phase of the recruitment process. Please advise on how I can best handle this situation.