I’m currently employed, and have been interviewing for a few months. A friend of mine just told me that he submits a bill for his travel expenses to his interviewer after the interview is complete. He will bill the interviewing company for his mass transit ticket, parking, mileage, and any other expenses associated with his travel. He said that I should be doing this too, as it “commands respect.” I think this is a terrible idea, but I wanted to get your advice before I discounted it out of hand.
You are correct. This is a terrible idea. When you are invited for an interview, it is assumed that the cost of getting to that interview will be borne by you. Submitting a follow-up invoice is, at best, poor etiquette, and at worst, is the move of a total jerk! An employer is going to be offended by receiving such an invoice, and will probably toss your application right in the trash folder.
The only exception to this would be when you are traveling a lengthy distance for an interview, at the request of the company. For example, you are interviewing for a position in Philadelphia, and the hiring manager decides that you need to meet with a team in Chicago. In this case, the employer should most definitely cover your travel expenses. However, if you’re in Philadelphia and you need to meet with some of the folks in the New York office, you should plan to foot the bill for the travel yourself.
All my best,