• Motel One Stories – reports of personal experience

    Integration project

    Motel One Stories – reports of personal experience

A new start in Germany

Abdu took his chance at Motel One

Abdu’s story

‘For me you are much more than a company. For me you’re family’ – With his internship and apprenticeship at Motel One, Abdu not only found a professional prospect in Germany, but on a personal level, he also found his feet in a new country. He is one of eight participants in the Motel One pilot project for refugee integration. We tell his story.  

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August 2015

Abdu sets foot on German soil for the first time. After months of travel after fleeing Damascus, he has finally arrived in Germany. He had to leave his home and his family in Syria as a result of persecution and war. With no papers, no accommodation, no job and no knowledge of German at all, Abdu has landed in Munich. 

March 2016

It is a great stroke of luck for Abdu to meet Matthias. Mathias is one of many voluntary helpers who are involved in refugee aid. Through Mathias, Abdu learns of the integration project at Motel One. As he already has previous experience of working in a hotel, Abdu applies for the five-month internship preparing for an apprenticeship. Abdu is invited to the assessment day and makes a great impression even without German language skills – his high motivation, interest and personal initiative make up for it.

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The participants of the integration project learn German together

April 2016

Abdu begins the internship to prepare for an apprenticeship at Motel One in Munich along with seven other refugees. Through the internship, the participants get a first taste of the professional world of the hotel industry and are able to improve their German. In the mornings, Abdu helps out in the various departments at Motel One Munich-City Süd, while in the afternoons he attends the language course organised by Motel One at the One Campus together with the other interns.

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Time as an intern

It is not only with working in the hotel and learning German that Abdu receives support. Like every other participant in the project, he has a mentor assisting him. The mentor supports him with external issues, like finding a flat and dealing with bureaucracy. Moreover, they are in close contact with social workers and voluntary helpers like Mathias.

All employees have been trained so that they can cope well with cultural differences and better understand the challenges the refugees face. In their free time, Abdu and his team get to know each other better at football training or partying together.

September 2016

On 1 September 2016, it is Abdu’s first day as an apprentice at Motel One! Back in August Abdu was informed that he was ready to begin an apprenticeship to become a specialist in the hospitality industry from September 2016. As a result of the language course and practice during the internship, his German has improved significantly, meaning there is no barrier to him attending a vocational school. There is unbelievable joy on all sides. Including from the leader of the integration project, Katrin.

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Talk with HR Manager


Abdu is doing very well in his apprenticeship and is already in his second year of study. He no longer lives in refugee accommodation, but has found a room in a shared flat in Munich. His colleagues are always especially pleased when he is on duty in the campus restaurant and can treat them to delicious dishes from his home country. He is also a regular member of the Munich Motel One football team, and not only for the One Cup.

We wish him every success with the remainder of his apprenticeship and hope he achieves his goal: ‘Someday I’ll be a manager at Motel One.’ 

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Motel One Stories

Meet Katrin - Manager Human Relations & project manager of the Motel One integration project


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