In a historical move towards genders equality in the ultraconservative Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, women were given the right to drive. The change which will take effect in June 2018, was announced in a royal decree. Since then, due to countless new legislation and reforms, many new opportunities have arisen for women in the kingdom which revolves around their ability to drive. A Saudi ride-hailing service Careem is currently looking to take advantage of the new influx of potential employees and are now seeking to hire women drivers, known as "Captainahs." A news source uncovered the company's goal is t o recruit and register more than 10,000 Captainahs in preparation to for the launch. Uber has also began recruiting female drivers in preparation for the day when the ban on women drivers is lifted.
Female customers currently represent 80% of Uber's Saudi rider base and 70% of Careem's. The ride-hailing apps have been an integral life line to women with no independent form of transportation. Currently, all the drivers for both companies have been Saudi national males driving their privately owned vehicles. Both the ride-hailing companies have launched training sessions targeting women who have already acquired valid driving licenses while abroad. Taught by existing female employees (which have been working in administration and not drivers), the sessions educate about Saudi road laws, customer service techniques and how to use the app's platform. Careem currently operates in 13 countries across the Middle East, North Africa and Pakistan and is already valued at around $1 billion. Aside from the ride-hailing business, other reforms have begun seeking for Saudi female drivers. A reform which requires all employees of car rental companies in the Kingdom to be Saudi nationals, has car rental services seeking female drivers.