Dubai: Meet the expat who has been driving for over 25 years and never received a traffic fine

"I am just a stickler for rules," says Zainudeen PB


Nasreen Abdulla

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Published: Thu 12 May 2022, 8:02 AM

Last updated: Thu 12 May 2022, 9:07 AM

Despite driving for more than 25 years and covering over a million kilometres in that time, Dubai-based Zainudeen PB has never received a single traffic fine.

Zainudeen, the group executive director of Hotpack Packaging, arrived in the UAE in 1996, a few months after his brother set up the company.

“In the beginning, it was just three of us,” he said. “My brother, me and a driver. I would drive hundreds of kilometres every day to meet customers and convince them to buy from us. Those were the days of hustling.”

He received his driver's licence in 1997 on his third try. "It took 1.5 years because in those days, you had to wait months to get a date for a test," he said.

Though the company has grown into a corporation that employees 3,300 people, one thing remains unchanged: Zainudeen’s passion and love for driving.

“I drive around 3,500km every month,” he said. “We have processing units in every emirate and about eight all over Dubai. I drive to each one of them at least a couple of times a month. I know I don’t need to personally visit each of them, but I like to lead by example.”

Speaking about his driving record of zero fines, Zainudeen said: "I am just a stickler for the rules," he said. "Whenever I have to get to a meeting, I always like to be early. I never exceed the speed limits and whenever I am in traffic, I never change lanes unnecessarily."

He added: "The most difficult part is the parking. I used to live and work around the Naif and Abu Hail areas. Finding a parking there is like winning the lottery. There were days when I had to go for a meeting, but I couldn’t attend it because I couldn’t find parking.”

Zainudeen's first car in Dubai was the Nissan Bluebird. And though he drives a Mercedes Maybach today, he says his driving style remains unchanged.

"I am ever so careful. Also, I think I have been incredibly lucky to not have been involved in any accident or even get a scratch on my car," he said. “I think my biggest pet peeve on the roads of the UAE is those 10 per cent of people who don’t respect the laws of the road and endanger the lives of the remaining 90 per cent who drive safely. I get very annoyed to see people who try to cut into lanes ahead of a long line of people. That is incredibly disrespectful."


Zainuddeen also had a few words of advice for young drivers: “Be patient and never lose your cool on the road. Also, don’t speed. Speeding can save you probably 5 or 10 minutes but those minutes are not worth risking your life for.”

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