At the time, around 8 years ago when I was in high school, there was no option to Uber anywhere, taking a local cab was unheard of for a woman, and there was absolutely no way would I risk riding in a car with one of my “male” friends.
Friday Morning Prayer call echoed around the city – Jeddah was always the most peaceful at this time. I stuffed my swimsuit and a pairs of jeans shorts into a small black duffel bag, zipped it up and sat on my bed. I was rushing, late, stressed out and could not leave the house until my father got home from prayer.
The driver was on vacation for the weekend, his wife was giving birth and so it would be impossible for him to be on call, as he usually was.
At the time these things mattered, a lot, and it didn’t feel good to be so She couldn’t help, she was a woman in Saudi Arabia, and she couldn’t drive me anywhere…
I am an Egyptian female who grew up in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
I visit Jeddah once every two months, and look forward to the day where I can drive myself to dinner.
Abaya clad, music blasting, friends in tow and evidently fearless!On Tuesday night King Salman ordered a reform allowing women to obtain a driver’s licence if they so please, with no requirement of permission from a male guardian.This was issued as a Royal Decree, and will be put into effect as of June 2018.Is this really still a topic of conversation in 2017? A beach side town, with a beautiful coast and access to some of the most coveted dining, shopping, and diving spots in the region.Growing up it seemed so normal to me; the constant frustration, the endless obstacles that came up when planning an outing due to having to organise rides there and back, the undeniable lack of equality and reliance on third parties. As a woman in Jeddah you had to acknowledge a couple of things.Saudi Arabia was the last country to allow women to drive.