Cairo: Recently approved rules on passenger services in Saudi Arabia banned eating and smoking during a taxi journey, making the violation punishable by SR200.
The rules, defining passengers’ rights and duties, obligate the user to pay the full fares based on the taxi metre or the ride-hail app via payment methods made available by the transporter or face legal liability.
According to the regulations, a passenger failing to pay the fares in full faces a penalty of a fine of SR200 plus payment of the fare double. However, the journey would be considered free of charge if the driver failed to operate the fare metre.
The passenger is, moreover, required to show the identification card to the transport employees, the service inspectors or representatives of any other competent agency.
Furthermore, the passengers have to avoid causing damage or noise, and to treat others including the driver with respect while getting access to the service. Accordingly, any kind of aggressive or inconvenient behaviour is not allowed. Nor is communication allowed with the driver after the journey ends unless the aim is to retrieve objects lost in the car.
In addition, the rules bar passengers from carrying large luggage that the car trunk cannot handle or any prohibited material.
At least one female adult should be present among the passengers in the family taxi driven by a woman.
The licensed operator of the taxi service is, meanwhile, obligated to ensure that the car is technically fit, clean and fitted with all safety tools, including a fire extinguisher and a first aid kit.
The driver cannot refrain from providing the service while on duty. Certain exceptions are made, though. They include having too many passengers for the seats available, or if the passenger eats and smokes inside the car, refuses to use the safety belt throughout the journey or tampers with the fittings and stickers of the car.