I am lebanese, residing in Lebanon and will be working remotely to my Employer's German office while cashing my salary every month from Lebanon. This means that my employer's office in Germany will be transferring my salary every month to Lebanon office so that they can pay me.

I will be travelling to Germany frequently where my employer will be paying for my travel expenses and accommodation. The challenge here is that German employees are much better paid than Lebanon ones (different cost of living). Can I request a salary increase though I would technically not be a german employee, but still paid out of Germany (as if it's an expense)? It is worth mentioning that working remotely for the German office is based on my request and not my employers to gain more experience in the European market and for career progression.

  • 3
    Chances are your employer hired you partly because they can pay much less for people in the lebanon. – Magisch Jun 22 '16 at 8:07
  • What sort of work do you do? I can only see this as being reasonable if you are in a job such as translator/interpreter or working in some field where they specifically need a Lebanese person rather than a local. In that case you have some leverage assuming your skillset is not common. – Kilisi Jun 22 '16 at 10:19

It is likely that the employer will give you a per diem payment for the travel days, rather than adjust your base salary. But the details will be specific to your particular employer.


Being lebanese, working in your country is a plus for you, and easier for the company (no problem with the working visa etc...).

But asking to be paid like a German employee might not be possible, because since you work in Lebanon, giving you a higher salary than expected for your position will not be understood by coworker, and even by the direction.

Rather than that, everytime you will travel to Germany, you may ask (if they don't give it to you automatically) a better payment for every day in the country, adding to the cost of the travel.

Don't hesitate to ask the condition of your work, but don't ask "can I have a german salary ?", it will sound strange for everyone.


The challenge here is that German employees are much better paid than Lebanon ones (different cost of living)

This has little to do with the cost of living. Companies don't even care if you live. As long you as do your work that is. It is about cost to the company.

I will make some assumptions here: you are working in a job that could be done by local German employees as well. Working remotely probably means some kind of tech job. While Germany has a shortage in certain professions, none of them could be done remote. Let's further assume that on average Germans and Lebanese can do the job in question at the same level. On average, there is no reason to hire one over the other as far as job relevant skills are concerned.

Now morally, it would only be fair if you got the same money for the same work you provide to the company, right? You work the same 40h week with the same skills on the same tasks as local employees.

But look at it from the company perspective. They incur costs on top of your salary. They pay overhead for the lebanese company. They pay your travel costs. They incur a communication overhead if you don't speak perfect German.

So to just be equal cost to the company, your salary needs to be lower than a local's salary by at least the amount they spend on travel costs and overhead.

And then, you are equal cost. Why would they hire you over a local guy everything else being equal? You need an advantage over the local guy, even if just a little one. Assuming equal skill level on average, that only leaves money as a leverage. To actually be hired, you need to be cheaper than locals even with the travel expenses and overhead costs.

That's why your salary is not the same by quite a margin. Companies only care for profit and they only make a profit employing you if you are cheaper overall than a local.

  • Feel free to point out why you think this is "not useful". I cannot improve something without constructive feedback. – nvoigt Jun 22 '16 at 13:58

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.