It’s hard to believe that it’s been two years since we first launched Uber Saudi Arabia in Riyadh. Today, Uber is available in 5 cities across Saudi Arabia – Jeddah, Riyadh, Mecca, Medina, and the Eastern Province.

As we continue to grow, we often are asked how Uber operates in various cities across the globe. Here is a look at how Uber works in Saudi.

A Global Technology Company

Uber is a technology company evolving the way the world moves by seamlessly connecting riders to drivers via the touch of a button on our Uber smartphone application. As a technology company, we don’t own cars or employ drivers. Instead, we partner with individuals who provide commercial transportation in Saudi Arabia.

We operate in over 360 cities, and more than 60 countries and have been providing tens of thousands of Saudi nationals and visitors with a reliable, safe and convenient way to get around their cities.

Creating Economic Opportunities in Saudi Arabia

At Uber we believe our driver partners are small business entrepreneurs demonstrating across the world that being a driver is sustainable and profitable. We are committed to Saudi Arabia, and are working closely with the government to extend opportunities in the sector to Saudi nationals.

Mobility Solutions For Women

By focusing on making our product as convenient and reliable as possible, our goal is to make the Uber product and experience accessible to everyone. This is particularly impactful in Saudi Arabia, where more than 80% of our riders are women.

Uber provides affordable and safe transportation to thousands of Saudi women, helping them get to work, school, job interviews, and career fairs.

Through our partnership with the Al Nahda Philanthropic Society For Women we aimed to encourage participation in the municipal elections, and offered free rides to those going to vote.

Uber in Saudi Arabia

At Uber, we believe that every city is unique, and do our best to adapt and meet the specific needs of every city we operate in. For example, to make Uber more accessible to riders in Saudi, we launched cash payments, and introduced discounted flat rates to Mecca during Ramadan.

It’s about more than just moving people; it’s about becoming woven into the fabric of every city we operate in. We’ve used our technology to collect toy donations for Ensam, a charity for orphans, as a platform for Saudi entrepreneurs to pitch their big ideas in UberPITCH, and even to deliver ice cream directly to hungry riders at the tap of a button.

While how the Uber app is used varies from city to city, our platform’s technology offers the same reliability and safety to riders across the world:

  • Safety: Uber riders can see their driver’s photo, name, vehicle type and registration as well as the driver’s star rating when booking – providing riders with all the information they need to ensure a safe and secure ride before even stepping into the car. Our technology allows riders to request a ride where they are, and not wait outside to be picked up. Riders can also let friends and family follow their route to know when to expect them.
  • Transparency: Riders are able to get a trip estimate before deciding if they will request a car via Uber
  • Feedback: We ask riders to rate the driver and provide feedback (anonymously) about their ride. We are constantly monitoring this feedback to maintain the quality of the service and help drivers improve the Uber experience they deliver.
  • Convenience: The Uber app automatically pinpoints riders’ location to provide true door-to-door service, and uses a live GPS enabled map to provide riders information about their trip if there is an issue.

Thanks for another great year in Saudi; looking forward to many more.

Majed Abukhater

GM, Uber Saudi Arabia