Saudi Arabia Encourages More Women To Become Taxi Drivers

The number of female Saudi taxi drivers is rising because of the good income and safe work environment.

Saudi transport chiefs kick-started a campaign aiming to recruit 20,000 Saudi drivers and women are especially welcome. The taxi driver profession has become increasingly popular among Saudi women since the ban on women driving in the KSA was lifted in June 2018.

“The number of female Saudi drivers working at these applications has reached 2,000, and the number is rising because of the good income and the safe work environment,” said Majed Al-Zahrani of the Public Transport Authority (PTA) to Arab News.

The cab industry is undergoing a Saudization, the number of taxi driver had from 100,000 to more than 600,000 since 2016. The goal of this recruiting campaign is to replace expatriates working for Uber, Careem, and other cab-hailing apps.

With these sweeping changes, the Ministry of Labor and Social Development and the PTA will be implementing new Saudization regulation, such as fines for illegal work and others.

The presence of women taxi drivers is a growing need across the Kingdom. Careem driver Kariman Khaled Al-Ghamdi wasn’t surprised with the new campaign, “Saudi families constantly request women drivers,” she told Arab News. Jamilah Al-Mahmoudi is an Uber driver from Makkah and she never looked back on joining the taxi app sevend months ago. “I got rid of the financial burden of hiring a driver, and now I drive pilgrims and visitors inside Makkah, which I enjoy,” she said.

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