Asking for help
Recently the same incident happened with me when I was coming out of the Fruit and Vegetable Market in Dubai, on June 25 (‘Men in luxury cars ask Dubai pedestrians for petrol money,’ Gulf News, July 1). It was a Saudi national driving an expensive vehicle, who requested me to stop. At first I thought he had lost his way and was asking for directions. But as I spoke to him, he asked me for money. He said that he was out of money and if I could help him. I gave him Dh200.
From Mr Usman
This happened to us last year, near Al Qusais and it was during Ramadan. I parked my car and immediately I noticed a car parked beside. There was a man wearing the GCC attire. He said he was form Saudi Arabia and that his relative had died. He wanted money to take his relative’s dead body back to Saudi Arabia. When I tried to reach for my pocket, I only had Dh100, so I gave it to him. To my surprise he asked for more. I told him that’s all I had and I left. I think as expatriates, we become fearful. The next time I encounter this, I will simply say: “Let me call the police to help you.”
From Mr J.R.
Full name withheld by request
Thanks to Gulf News for publishing this story even though it is a little too late. I’ve been having a bitter experience regarding similar issues for the past decade. I’m a frequent traveller and such cheaters gather at petrol stations in Saudi Arabia. They have either a UAE or an Omani licence plate number. The most recent incident I encountered was last month when an Asian looking man with family members asked me for money. I refused to help him and warned him. I suggest everyone must be careful that they don’t fall into these traps.
From Mr Abdul Hamid
Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
Money making business
I have also faced a similar incident, thrice in Abu Dhabi. The first two times the vehicles had an Omani licence plate number. They just stopped in the service lane when I was walking with my wife. The men had children in the car and said they needed money to go back home, as they had lost their money. The third incident was at a petrol station on the Dubai-Abu Dhabi highway. The first time this happened, I gave Dh100 to help the man in need. But when it happened for the second time, I refused to help because I had a feeling that it was fake. Then it happened for the third time, this confirmed that it was just a money making business.
From Mr Riyas
Call the police
Last weekend a Saudi family approached my husband and me in Al Quasis, near NMC Hospital, asking for money to return home. They told us that all their money was spent arranging to send home a family member who was hospitalised. There were very well dressed, which made us feel that they were fraudulent. We advised them to go to the nearest police station and they just fled the scene. I suggest people should call the police if they encounter similar situations.
From Ms Binitha
This is a very common practice near Ibn Battuta Mall, especially during Ramadan. I don’t think they are always Saudis. Sometimes I have seen other nationalities, too. These people usually have children with them when they ask for money. When it happens with someone for the first time, seeing the children you would not realise that they are cheats.
From Ms Lisa
This doesn’t only happen on the roads, some of these people have the audacity to walk into residential buildings asking for financial help. They have a bad injury and are usually carrying some kind of written notes asking for help. Some of them even carry pictures of God. Beware of such hypocrites, as they will do anything for money. Strict action needs to be taken against these swindlers.
From Ms Mala
If the authorities are serious about reducing traffic, they should have a proper plan (‘RTA to abolish daily Salik cap from July 15,’ Gulf News, July 1). How is removing the Salik cap going to reduce traffic? I don’t know. If the authorities are concerned, they should actually implement the toll only during peak traffic hours. This is a common system followed by many major cities around the world.
From Mr Ahmad Jassem
What happens to people who are unaware of the alternative routes? If removing the Salik cap only affects a small segment of the driving population, then why implement it?
From A Reader
Efficient public transport
If the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) is serious about reducing traffic in the UAE, it’s easy, just issue a route permit to private vans and buses to pick up the passengers from most locations. When vans and buses will be easily available at your door step, most people will use the option, provided the fares are cheap and affordable.
From Mr Mohammad Shafique
Don’t trust them
I would be wary about entrusting money to financial advisors (‘Most people in the UAE financially unprepared for long term,’ Gulf News, July 1). The financial crises has shown us all that these advisors know very little about planning. It seems they are the only ones who are getting rich while the rest of us struggle to make ends meet.
From Mr Gerard
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