5 reasons many Saudi women say ‘No’ to driving

Recently the ban on driving for women was lifted in Saudi Arabia. The development was greeted with excitement and joy by most of the Saudis but it seems where most of the women wanted to obtain this right and practice it right away some women are just not ready.

Many women don’t want to drive in Saudi Arabia: In a survey, it was found out that many women have reasons to not drive in Saudi Arabia. What might these reasons be?

1-They need some time to observe: Well, most of the women say that they are just ‘not ready’ for the change yet. They have fears regarding the new development and they want some time to observe how things go before giving it a try themselves.

As driving is something new for the women in Saudi Arabia, they have their fair share of fears. Their minds are already occupied with the stress of their work at home and dealing with the kids, therefore, confusion while driving can occur.

2-Not enough parking spaces: Also, not finding parking space with children in the car can lead to more stress. Women fear accidents much more than men which makes them scared while driving.

Older age women say that they do not know the streets too well to drive, therefore they think that driving should be left to the young women.

They believe that there are many factors to be achieved before women start driving. For example, the streets should be ready and arranged, more comfortable parking areas should be available and good and clean automotive workshops that are suitable to serve women customers must be present.

3-The country is not ready for women to drive: The women said the country is not yet ready for women driving and it will take some time for things to cool and settle down. Until then, they want to be mere spectators.

They think that the time is here for the society to accept women behind the wheel but it will take some time for the people to fully accept it and the development to become socially normalized.

4-Driving will lead to more responsibilities: Some women believe that driving will lead to more responsibilities. Women already have a lot on their plate, they have to worry about many things and if they start driving there would be a lot more to worry about like picking the kids from school or getting the groceries from the market.

The women say that men are always trying to evade responsibilities and if they start driving then the men would have another way to evade their responsibilities and put it on their wives.

Meanwhile, many women have already adjusted to their life without being allowed to drive. They normally rely on their husbands or are more than happy to take Careem or Uber to wherever they want to go.

5-Expensive Driving Schools: Some people fear that the system is not ready yet with few driving schools and the ones which are available are expensive. As we have stated in one of our articles that the cost of teaching driving to women is almost 6 times higher than men.

Apart from the women being discouraged and scared, there are many optimistic ones who are excited about driving. They say they have applied for their license and are more than ready to drive as soon as it arrives.

The women must remain positive as they approach this situation. It is a big step forward for women empowerment in Saudi Arabia.

Source: Arab News

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Steve has been living in Saudi Arabia since 2013 and writing about Saudi rules, regulations, guides, and procedures since then.