Saudi female driving instructors getting the best trainers

Susan Newbon, (L), with two other women selected to train Saudi female driving instructors. — Photo courtesy BBC

Saudi Gazette report

— Women from Wales, Canada and the US have been selected as part of a global team to train the first female driving instructors in Saudi Arabia, Al Arabiya English reported quoting BBC.

“Susan Newbon, Canadian Deborah Sherwood and American Norma Adrianzen will be able to train women from June 24,” the BBC reported.

They will work as “senior assessors” for up to two years, training new examiners and instructors, according to the report.

“Being in Saudi Arabia is totally different to what I expected, the people are so welcoming,” Susan Newbon, 56, from Llantwit Major in Vale of Glamorgan, told BBC.

She said about 1,500 people applied for the three jobs.

She said some Saudi Arabian women had traveled to other countries in the region to get their driving licenses and experience in preparation for the team’s arrival. “After spending the last few weeks with the ladies, and learning about their culture and how not being able to drive has impacted their everyday lives, it is a real honor and privilege to be part of the changes,” she said.

“There are a lot of very excited ladies over here who can’t wait to get in the driving seat,» added Newbon.

Nearly 8,000 female applicants have obtained driving licenses in the Kingdom so far.

Driving schools for women have been set up across five cities in the country, and teachers will include Saudi women who obtained their licenses abroad.

In September 2017, a royal decree announced the end of a decades-long ban on women driving.

Women 18 years of age and older will be allowed to apply for a driver’s license.