Careem VS Uber, my personal experience

Personal chauffeur services is becoming an interesting need and the market is certainly increasing. You might think you don’t need one as long as you have a car, well, guess what, you are wrong!. I personally have a car, yet, I needed a decent, clean, odor-free, and available car to drop me to or from an airport.

Uber Logo


Initially Uber was not available in Saudi Arabia until last month. This gave Careem a competitive advantage of being introduced first in the enormous Saudi market.

I wasn’t even able to register for an account until I was in New York. However, I still haven’t used the service when I was there. Few weeks after returning from my US trip, I got an email from Uber announcing their availability in Jeddah.

Once I was in Dammam and wanted to book a car to drop me to the hotel but unfortunately, they weren’t operating there yet. Another time I wanted a car to drop me to the airport early morning and they didn’t have the ability to book a car in advance. Searching for an available cars at 4AM didn’t show any available cars :(.

I’m still eager to try their service but unfortunately I wasn’t able to up till now. I might update this post once I do.

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A problem in the Saudi entrepreneurship ecosystem

Just like anywhere in the world, SMEs and startups represents the majority of commercial record registrations (CRs) in the Ministry of Commerce and Industry (MCI). In fact, they share more than 95% of these registrations! Which is a typical scenario in most other countries.

What does it mean?

This means we should have a lot of small and medium companies as well as businesses. Having such a high percentage also means a very high number of jobs available in different industries and sectors.

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Migrating to Jekyll

Here I am back again to blogging after stopping for several years. I’m still not through with everything yet but I’m currently migrating my old Drupal blog as well as my recent Octopress to Jekyll, the greatest text-file-based blog.


As you can see, it is still a beta move and I have a lot remaining. Therefore, I thought of having it listed down so I can mark whatever is done once I’m through with it. Here goes the list:

  1. Migrate Octopress posts
  2. Migrate old Drupal posts (Got to fix the current issue with the Drupal install!)
  3. Comments (not sure if I really want it though). Added Disqus.
  4. Contact Form
  5. Design New theme
  6. Support for Twitter Cards
  7. Tweet a post
  8. Fix imported posts
  9. Add OG support

Got some suggestions? Feel free to tweet it over to @Yraffah

Running a marathon for the first time

After discovering I had very high levels of low density lipoprotein (LDL Cholesterol), in addition to me being overweight. I decided it was really important to re-focus on my health for the sake of myself, my family, and the mankind :). Since then, I started changing my eating and cooking habits, in addition to a little bit of cardio exercises, basically walking and jogging.

Fast forward to one and half years after that, I started practicing for the yearly half-marathon race “Jeddah Marathon” with a very enthusiastic team lead by Ali Sheneamer.

During Jeddah Marathon trainings You can see me in the bottom right photo being in the middle between @lmnassem and @SaudKoshari.

We trained for less than a month with a schedule of 3 days a week in the beginning then intensive trainings on the last week and a half. I personally was progressing well, according to my athletic status, as you can see in the below image.

Jeddah Marathon training progress

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Nike+ Fuelband

Finally Received

Since Nike announced their new NIKE+ FUELBAND I immediately felt the need for one. Compared to other health monitoring gadgets/devices it beats them all in terms of design, functionality, and most importantly, community; which is a killer thing when it comes to Nike+.

Unfortunately, like many out there and probably like you as well, I wasn’t able to get it due to its low stock availability. This thing is selling like hot cakes and keeps on getting out of stock. The only way for me to get one was by following their twitter accounts in order to know as soon as any stock quantity and place an order through one of my friends in the US since their store doesn’t accept credit cards issued from Saudi Arabia (We are in 2012 for god’s sake!).