From an international student to a successful expat in Germany

Farid is originally from Jordan, and he first came to Germany as an international student for one semester in 2017. He joined the Fintiba team in August 2018 to complete a 6-month internship in the Customer Care team. Later Farid transitioned into a full-time position after obtaining a German working visa from Jordan. He was happy to share his experience as an expat studying and working in Germany with us in this blog post.

Why and how did you decide to come to Germany for your studies?

For me the dream of one day traveling to Germany began when I applied for the German Jordanian University (GJU) located in Amman, Jordan. I chose GJU, as it is a very highly rated university in my country.  It offers a variety of very interesting bachelor’s degree programmes, which combine theory, research, and practice.

In addition, GJU offered the option to study for one semester in Germany. There was a choice of different German Universities, which are partnering with GJU. Another important aspect for me was the emphasis on practical experience through a mandatory internship. The best part was that it was also possible to complete one in Germany. So, after I finished all theoretical courses of my Logistics science bachelor in Jordan, I travelled in September of 2017 to start my adventure in Germany.

Why did you decide to use Fintiba for your blocked account?

In 2017, when I started to collect all documents needed for my year in Germany, I realized I need some professional support and guidance on which providers to choose. Fintiba was recommended to me by the German Jordanian University – as a fully-digital provider of reliable financial and insurance solutions for international students going to Germany.

At the time when I was applying for my visa there were no other fully digital providers offering a Blocked Account on the German market. Fintiba was the first company that revolutionized this product and I was glad I do not need to go through the traditional paper-intensive process, which also took a lot longer. After doing my own research I felt confident to open my blocked account with Fintiba and entrust my money to their partner Sutor Bank.

How was the opening process of your Fintiba blocked account and your overall customer experience?

Opening the blocked account with Fintiba was a quick and smooth process. I could upload all documents and information needed in the app from home. The process was very transparent and quick. The communication with the dedicated customer care line at Fintiba was very easy and professional. My questions were answered swiftly and solved quickly. With Fintiba, I could use a fully digital product and my entire customer experience was very positive.

How did you find an internship in Germany?

In addition to my semester in Germany, completing an internship was a mandatory element of my bachelor’s degree. Thus, I had to start searching for an interesting internship opportunity, ideally in an international company. To start with, I applied for a lot of open positions via big job portals such as StepStone and Linkedin. One day, while looking for internships, I noticed that Fintiba had an open position. I was already familiar with Fintiba as a company, since I was a customer. Thus, I was immediately interested to learn more. I did some more in-depth research about the company and found their business model very interesting. In addition, their motivation and innovation drive were truly inspiring. Thus, I decided to apply for the internship right away and was lucky to be accepted.

At the beginning I was unsure of the fit, as Fintiba operates in the finance and insurance area. This is rather different from my logistics background. However, since my personal motto is “why not try something different”, I decided it will be a good opportunity for me to learn something new. It is healthy for everyone especially at the start of one’s career path to have some doubts . However, the most important thing is to know how to overcome your fear and keep going forward. So, my advice is do not be afraid to seize an interesting opportunity even if it does not match your original experience or expectations. In my case it was the best decision I took!

How did you apply for a German working visa while in Jordan?

After my internship was over, I went back to Jordan to graduate from my university. Since my internship was successful and I felt that Fintiba is a great company – I decided to accept an offer for a full-time position. For this however I needed a working visa for Germany. The whole application process was a big fear of mine, as I used to hear a lot of stories about challenges from other people who went through it. It took me a long time to collect all needed documents to meet the requirements and to get a visa appointment at the German Embassy. In fact, the process took about six months from the application to receiving the visa. So, for those of you who are in the same stage my advice is to stay patient. If you have submitted all documents correctly things will work out 😊

My other realisation was that the visa application process was actually not as difficult and scary as I thought. You should be cautious in collecting all necessary documents, certificates and practical experience and it will all work out in the end. Fintiba also helped me out in the process and even contacted the German embassy in Jordan on my behalf and to emphasise that I had important qualifications to support the team as a full-time employee.

How did you start a full-time position with Fintiba and what are you impressions of the company and team today?

When I came back to Germany for the second time in 2020 my experience was different than my time as a student. Unfortunately, I arrived at the height of the pandemic when working from home was the norm. So, I had to start the full-time position at Fintiba remotely. However, the team was very supportive and was able to help me learn my tasks and responsibilities. This made my experience more comfortable and I was able to fit in my new role rather quickly. I was also very proud to see that during the past six months the Fintiba team had grown a lot. They had introduced many new products and process improvements. I was very excited to start my new position with more responsibilities than before and to learn even more from the team.

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