Tuesday, September 1, 2009

"Girl taxi" and "Ladies Nights"

The WSJ reports 'Girl Taxi' Service Offers Haven to Beirut's Women .

"...these days the city's transport staple is facing some serious competition from a growing army of female taxi drivers, dressed in stiff-collared white shirts, dark shades, pink ties and small pink flowers tucked into their flawlessly coiffed hair.
All of them drive for Banet Taxi, or "girl taxi" in Arabic. It is Lebanon's first cab service for women, by women. You can't miss the company's signature candy-pink cars."
"The company is part of a regional trend. Entrepreneurs across the Middle East have recognized the business potential in offering secure transportation options for women. Banet Taxi follows on the heels of successful women-only transportation models in Dubai, Tehran and Cairo."

..."It is the promise of a safe and uneventful ride that attracts a wide range of female passengers: older women who want a quiet drive, young women out partying until late at night, and even preschoolers put in the cars by their teachers.
Passengers' reasons for choosing Banet are based, in part, on their cultural and religious backgrounds. Beirut's population breaks down roughly into thirds, Christian, Sunni and Shiite. Conservative Muslim women might take Banet Taxi to accommodate rules against traveling with unknown men. Others just want to put comfort and safety first."

While single sex markets thrive in some venues, others use gender as a basis for discriminatory pricing, with different prices for men and women. Economists mostly don't find this malign in two-sided platforms like those that provide dating opportunities, since they need to attract both genders in comparable proportions. So, for example, some clubs have 'ladies nights,' in which women are admitted for free or at a lower cover charge.

One lawyer is very annoyed by this: N.Y. Lawsuit Calls 'Ladies' Night' Discriminatory . However Roy Den Hollander "ANTI-FEMINIST LAWYER"--N.Y. Times seems to be mostly losing these cases, and has drawn this unsympathetic portrait from the New Yorker: Hey, La-a-a-dies!


Nitin said...

yes, here in Dubai they do have a similar bright-pink ladies taxi service. in fact the brand new metro starts this coming week and they're going to have a separate ladies coach in that too.

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