Women will legally be able to start driving in Saudi Arabia on June 24 this year, it was confirmed this week.
RELATED: Click here to compare the best car loans in KSA
In an official statement, Mohammad Al Bassami, Director General of the General Department of Traffic, said: “All the requirements for women in the Kingdom to start driving have been established.”
Women must be at least 18 years old to apply for a licence and they must pass a medical exam, pass both theoretical and practical driving tests, and complete a required number of hours of training in accredited driving schools.
Five schools have so far been established in Riyadh, Jeddah, Dammam, Madinah and Tabuk, with more expected to follow. At least six hours of training are required.
Around 20 facilities for issuing licences will be ready by the beginning of June.
Women who hold driving licences from abroad can visit licensing centres, where their skills will be assessed. It isn’t clear if they will be issued licenses for KSA on the spot, should they meet the required standards, or have to undergo the required number of training hours.
Al Bassami confirmed that women will be able to work as taxi drivers and as drivers for app-based ride-booking services. He also expects them to play a greater role in the work of traffic departments.
“With the advent of this new move, women’s role in the traffic field will expand, as well,” he said. “Women are already involved in monitoring traffic violations such as compliance with the mandatory seat belt law and the ban on using mobile phones while driving.
“These violations are automatically monitored, and authorities are considering adding more infractions to be detected by the automatic monitoring systems. As the new laws take root, an increased presence of women will be seen both in the field and in the administration of traffic laws.”
Al Bassami also cleared up one point. Women will be subject to the same rule on window tints as existing drivers.