RIYADH: Ever since June 24, when the ban on women driving was lifted, many Saudis have been trying their luck at spotting an actual woman behind the wheel.
People are keeping count of how many they’ve seen driving.
As the number is still low, it’s become something of a phenomenon to spot one on the busy streets of Riyadh.
“People are joking that women drivers are like the Pokémon game: Rare to spot and everyone is looking out for them,” said Mozon S, a mother of three, who has registered at the Saudi driving school at Princess Noura University. She started taking lessons this week.
“The number of ladies that have received their driving licenses do not compare to the amount of men who already have theirs. Therefore, the number of women taking to the streets is relatively low.”
“A lot of men are saying look, women don’t want to drive, we haven’t seen any so far,” Mozon said.
“But if they go to women driving schools and they see the ladies registering for a license, they will be surprised by the sheer number. Women by nature are responsible. This matter is no different to them. They know driving is a responsibility, which should be taken seriously and through legal means.”
“So far, I’ve only seen one lady drive at the Bahrain and Khobar intersection.” said Noor Musheiykh, an architect.
“I was shocked. It felt weird, and I laughed afterwards. It’s because this is new, and we haven’t seen it, yet. The number of licenses issued for ladies is small, but them driving is giving off positive vibes!”
More than 120,000 women have applied or expressed interest in obtaining a license so far. Which would explain the small number of women on the streets.