Pay money to stop paying money… Just another Diatribe in Kuwait

Oftentimes we are presented with a series of events that leave us questioning our existence as a species – are we only here to scrape that last morsel of earning from one another?

A truly preposterous scenario recently unfolded before my eyes that cements that same exact sentiment, let us view it in chronological order in order to better highlight the humor in it:

1) 4 years ago I decided to buy a car. As we were taught in business school, never spend your own money. So despite having the ability to pay the full amount in cash, I opted to instead borrow money from the bank (my bank of choice: NBK) and have them finance it over 4 years. I am sorry, her. My car is a she. Her name is M’kia Spartan.


Not really her but a distant cousin

2) So of course, the bank is in the business of making money. For those that do not know, a bank is merely a meeting place for people with money and people without money. The bank takes your savings and pays you a meager interest, and lend your savings to others at a cost. The former interest is significantly smaller than the latter, generating a neat profit for the bank.

Anyhoo, I digress.

3) So the bank takes interest on the loan, in addition to charges you for paperwork here and there.

4) Fast forward to the current day, where the loan is finally repaid and you breathe a sigh of relief.


Hold that thought.

5) The vehicle’s registration still reads “Requested for Installments”. In a perfect scenario, you would walk up to the DMV with a copy of your online bank statement and show them that you have no more installments to pay. Right?



The bank is losing a steady stream of cash they have gotten used to from your pocket for the past few years.

In Arabic we have a saying: هو دخول الحمام زي خروجه؟ or “Hoa dekhoul el hamam zay kherougoo”?


Ask your Arabic friends to translate that for you.

So of course not! The bank must grab all it can from you.

6) So you are kindly requested to pay a fee of 5KD to print a paper which states that you were a good boy and paid off your loan in full (more on that adventure with NBK later).

7) You pay the fee, get the paper, renew your insurance and take your car to the DMV to get it renewed, and finally remove the “Requested for Installments” line from your registration.

Now, in a perfect society you would expect the ordeal to be over right? I paid the bank interest, I paid the bank processing fees, now please take these official signed documents and give me my renewed registration. Right?



8) Exactly! Did you think the DMV would just let it slide like that? Firstly, they need a day or so to verify the authenticity of this document you allege is relieving you of installments.

9) Second, you expect the poor employee at the PC to just “DELETE” this line (which if you think of it, is costing them extra ink, so I am technically saving them money) which reads “Requested for Installments”, for free?

10) Pay another 5KD and wait.

So in the end, I had to pay money to prove that I am no longer paying money.

Told you it was comical.

August 2011 ( View complete archive page )

September 2011 ( View complete archive page )

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