The global ride-hailing company Uber that has introduced country-specific policies in Saudi Arabia to encourage Saudi female drivers and passengers to use the platform, has revealed on Monday a 50% year-on-year increase in female drivers working for the firm, Arab News reports.
The company’s initiative “Women Preferred View”, rolled out in 2020, means female drivers are able to select women-only riders which also enticed 79% year-on-year rise in the average weekly female trips taken in the Kingdom.
The recent Uber-commissioned Ipsos poll showed that 31% of Saudis are interested in driving as an earnings opportunity with 74% stressing they only want to carry women riders.
Uber’s general manager in Saudi Arabia, Mohammed Gazzaz, hailed the policy success, stressing the initiative is based on months of research of women’s needs in relation to transport and driving with confidence to make a substantial difference to women’s lives.
Gazzaz underlined the company’s support to the goal to increase female participation in the workforce by providing flexible economic opportunities and offering them affordable transport solutions to and from their places of work.
Uber has also launched another initiative named Masaruky in partnership with Al-Nahda Foundation and the Saudi Driving School, pledging SR1 million ($266,667) aimed to support the government’s drive to empower Saudi women to contribute in the national economy’s development.
The initiative supports women who want to obtain driver’s license, but lack the means to do so.
Offering access to affordable transportation, the program strives to increase female participation in the workforce and women’s access to flexible economic opportunities through Uber technology.