As I teach Financial literacy in different institutions here in Saudi Arabia, I came to know that majority of OFW does not know the difference of wants and needs. They probably know it theoretically, but they don’t know the importance of knowing the difference that it will make in their future. Delaying gratification is not in the vocabulary of most OFW’s. Here are some ideas which will definitely let you know the difference of Wants and Needs.


  • Not dying when not be able to purchase a thing
  • It is only due to envy that is why your buying
  • You believe that those items that you will buy is part of your status symbol
  • Self-gratification
  • Buying because of “Sale items” thinking that you can save from your purchase even you will not need those items in the next few days.


  • You will die if you will not purchase it (i.e food, clothings, etc)
  • It is needed in your work or business
  • You know what you are buying, and you know where you will use it after purchase.
  • You know that if you will not purchase now, it will definitely affect your future
  • You will purchase because you know that it could give your family peace in the event of unforeseen events.

I am not saying not buying those wants, but what I am saying is that we need to be prepared on buying those want. In other words you need to plan and save for paying those wants. Don’t buy want from credit. There is always a general rule that if you don’t have cash to buy for your wants, it is not for you.

Buying on want with credit will lead you to a big financial mess. Hope this short post will remind you the importance of knowing needs and wants. As always you can use extra money for investment.