All students at HAW (and other colleges and universities) receive a discounted ticket for public transport every semester. It is automatically paid as part of the semester fees when you re-register (the ticket currently costs €177.60). The number of tickets purchased by the HVV is fixed and always corresponds to the number of enrolled students.
For students for whom paying the fees for the semester ticket would represent a particular hardship or who cannot use the ticket for study-related reasons (because they are studying abroad, for example), the "Semestertickethärtefonds" (semester ticket funding) has been set up:
It is not possible to not buy individual tickets from the HVV. All tickets have to be bought there every semester. Refunds are therefore organised on a solidarity basis using money from the students. Anyone who falls within the refund guidelines can have their ticket refunded. The money for the refund comes from the hardship fund, into which all students pay € 4.50 with their semester fee.
There is often the situation that students do not want to/can not use the ticket but do not fall within the official guidelines. This is then very frustrating, especially when from a personal perspective a refund would seem fair and appropriate. In this case, there is the possibility to appeal against a rejection of the application. The individual case is then examined in detail and it is seen whether a refund can also be made outside the guidelines.
Since last year, however, we have had the situation that many of you cannot/would not like to use the ticket.
The financial situation of many students is bad, lectures are held digitally anyway and public transport is a potential risk for those who need special protection for themselves or others. Nevertheless, unfortunately, semester tickets cannot be refunded across the board because of Corona and digital teaching. As already explained, the money for the refunds comes from the hardship fund, it does not come from the HVV but is financed through a classic solidarity principle. In short: 4.50 € per student would not be able to cover this, since all students are in this situation. It takes 40 semester fees to finance one refund.
We can really understand the frustration, but nevertheless it cannot be changed at this point in time. Only those who fall within the guidelines of the hardship fund can have their ticket refunded. If you have any questions about this or need help with the application process, please feel free to contact us.