Smart spending: experiences vs. things

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a woman jumping into the air, holding a bag in one hand and a coin in another

We live in a time where everything that we would want to buy is available at our fingertips. This is very true for those of us living in Saudi Arabia, it seems like every store and company has an app that will sell you products or experiences. With the rise of digital wallets and online shopping, whether to spend money on experiences or material possessions has never been more relevant. In this blog post, we go over both to help guide you on how to spend your money smartly.

The power of experiences
1. Memories over materialism

Experiences have a unique ability to create lasting memories that stay with us far longer than the initial excitement of owning something tangible. Whether it’s a road trip with friends, attending a live event, or exploring a new city, the memories forged through experiences become a part of your identity.

2. Personal growth and learning

Experiences often push us out of our comfort zones, encouraging personal growth and self-discovery. Traveling, trying new activities, or attending cultural events exposes us to different perspectives, fostering a deeper understanding of the world and ourselves.

3. Social connection

Shared experiences can strengthen relationships and create a sense of camaraderie. Investing in activities of trips with friends and family can lead to stronger bonds and a sense of belonging, contributing to overall well-being.

4. Emotional well-being

Studies suggest that spending money on experiences tends to contribute more to long-term happiness than material possessions.

The appeal of possessions
1. Tangible comfort and longevity

Material possessions offer a sense of stability and ownership. Whether it’s a new gadget, a fashionable item, or a piece of technology, these things can provide tangible comfort and serve as a reminder of achievements or milestones.

2. Expressing identity

Possessions often serve as a form of self-expression. The clothes you wear, the technology you use, and the items you own can be reflections of your personality, style, and interests.

3. Status symbol

In some societies, owning certain possessions can be perceived as a status symbol, signaling success or accomplishment. While this might not be the sole reason to acquire things, it’s essential to acknowledge the societal impact of material possessions.


Ultimately, the decision to spend money on experiences or things is deeply personal and depends on individual values, priorities, and financial situations. Striking a balance between the two may be the key to a fulfilling and well-rounded life.

Consider allocating a portion of your budget to experiences that contribute to personal growth and happiness, while also allowing yourself to indulge in meaningful possessions that enhance your daily life.

As Saudi teens and young adults, you have a wealth of opportunities to explore both the rich cultural experiences your country offers and the ever-evolving landscape of material possessions. By making conscious choices, you can create a life that harmonizes the joy of living in the moment with the satisfaction of tangible achievements.

© FataFeat 2023