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Saudi Women and Vision 2030: Bridging the Gap?

Saleh, Wafaa; Malibari, Areej


Areej Malibari


(1) Background, Travel characteristics of Saudi women contrast significantly from those in the west. This is not only because they have different culture, attitudes and preferences but also until recently, Saudi women were not allowed to drive. In 2018, they were granted the right to drive. It has been anticipated that enabling women to drive will improve their mobility and employability. (2) Methods: This study presents a qualitative study into factors affecting Saudi women’s travel decisions “before” and “after” enabling women to drive in the Kingdom. Two six “before” and “after” focus groups have been carried out to investigate the decision-making process associated with Saudi women’s travel, available options of travel and perception of Saudi women towards private car driving. (3) Results: The results reveal that main travelling options for professional and high-income women is a private driver in the “before” scenario and a ride-share option with a family member. In the “after” scenario, high income professional women prefer “drive own car” option. Moreover, many of the participants indicated that it is likely that they might keep private drivers as well. (4) Conclusion. The results from this research indicate that there has been significant change in travel characteristics, attitudes and behaviour of Saudi women since they were granted the right to drive. This is likely to have significant implications for decision and policy makers. Further research into potential impacts of the current situation on car ownership and use, impacts on public transport system, environmental impacts and sustainability is needed.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Sep 23, 2021
Online Publication Date Sep 27, 2021
Publication Date 2021-10
Deposit Date Nov 25, 2021
Publicly Available Date Nov 25, 2021
Journal Behavioral Sciences
Publisher MDPI
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 11
Issue 10
Article Number 132
Keywords Saudi women travel behaviour; private car driving; women driving
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Saudi Women and Vision 2030: Bridging the Gap? (249 Kb)

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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