Edmonton man receives partial refund for $1,100 Uber bill

An Edmonton man who was charged more than $1,100 for an Uber ride on New Year’s Eve has been refunded half his bill.

See Full Article

Matthew Lindsey used the ride-sharing app after celebrating a wedding Thursday night with a group of friends. His driver made three separate stops to drop passengers off, travelling 63 kilometres over 60 minutes in total.

Lindsay said had taken comparable trips before.

“We use Uber all the time, so it was the first choice for me,” he told CTV Edmonton. “I’ve actually taken a similar route at peak time before and it cost me about $77.”

His New Year’s trip cost a base fare of $125 – but the 8.9 “surge” multiplier caused the price to balloon to $1,114.71.

Uber’s “surge” pricing is a supply-and-demand approach that kicks in during the company’s busiest hours. When a high number of people request rides, the availability of Uber drivers becomes limited.

“As a result, prices increase to encourage more drivers to become available,” Uber’s website explains.

Before hailing a ride, users are shown the “surge” multiplier, explaining their drive will cost significantly more than usual due to the high demand. They’re also given the option to be notified when “surge” prices end and the fare returns to normal.

If riders choose to pay extra, they’re also forced to type in the exact multiplier they’re agreeing to pay as a sign of acknowledgment.

After his story aired on CTV Edmonton Saturday, Lindsay said Uber called him and offered to refund half his fare.

Others, too, were incensed by Uber bills totalling hundreds of dollars. Two Montreal passengers were charged $625 for a 40-kilometre trek.

“We might have well just rented a room or something at that point,” passenger Veronica Iafrancesco told CTV Montreal.

“I feel like I was robbed,” said Cassandra Zakaib, another Montreal rider who was charged $320 on New Year’s Eve.

Uber did, however, attempt to warn users in advance that New Year’s Eve prices would be higher than usual.

“To avoid the highest fares, catch a ride just after midnight or have your app notify you when Surge Pricing drops,” one email, sent by Uber Thursday morning, said. It also recommended using their price estimating tool before riding and splitting the fare with friends.

Still, users like Lindsay are unhappy it’s even possible to spend $1,000 on a car ride.

“They just haven't acknowledged the fact that this is an unfathomable price. It’s a ridiculous, outrageous price.”



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • COVID-19 limits possibilities for former prime minister John Turner's state funeral

    Canada News CBC News
    Planning for a state funeral for former prime minister John Turner is proceeding in the shadow of the COVID-19 pandemic, as his family and the government decide how to honour his public life while public events are restricted. Source
  • Mitt Romney's support strengthens Republican bid to move quickly on U.S. Supreme Court nominee

    World News CBC News
    Utah Republican Sen. Mitt Romney said Tuesday he supports voting to fill the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg's seat on the Supreme Court, all but ensuring President Donald Trump has the backing needed to push the nomination over Democratic objections that it's too close to the November election. Source
  • Huge California wildfire threatening more than 1,000 homes

    World News CTV News
    LOS ANGELES -- A wildfire scorching its way through brush and timber from the mountains to the desert northeast of Los Angeles threatened more than 1,000 homes on Tuesday as crews across the West battled dozens of other major blazes. Source
  • Quebec reports 489 new cases of COVID-19 as hospitalizations increase by 20

    Canada News CTV News
    MONTREAL -- Quebec health authorities reported 489 new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday, bringing the total number of cases in the province since the start of the pandemic to 68,617. One more death has been recorded in Quebec for a total of 5,805. Source
  • Russia says world's largest nuclear icebreaker embarking on Arctic voyage

    World News CBC News
    A nuclear-powered icebreaker that Russia says is the world's largest and most powerful set off on Tuesday on a two-week journey to the Arctic as part of Moscow's efforts to tap the region's commercial potential. Known as "Arktika," the nuclear icebreaker left St. Source
  • Ottawa affirms Mi'kmaq treaty rights in Nova Scotia lobster dispute

    Canada News CTV News
    SAULNIERVILLE, N.S. -- The federal government is affirming the Mi'kmaq First Nation's treaty rights in an ongoing dispute with non-Indigenous fishermen in southwestern Nova Scotia. Fisheries Minister Bernadette Jordan and Indigenous Relations Minister Carolyn Bennett released a statement Monday saying the Mi'kmaq have a constitutionally protected treaty right to fish in pursuit of a moderate livelihood. Source
  • Romney OKs voting on court nominee, all but assures approval

    World News CTV News
    WASHINGTON -- Republican Sen. Mitt Romney of Utah said Tuesday he supports voting to fill the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg's seat on the Supreme Court, all but ensuring U.S. President Donald Trump has the backing to push his choice to confirmation over Democratic objections that it's too close to the November election. Source
  • Ontario reports highest number of new COVID-19 cases since early May

    Canada News CTV News
    TORONTO -- Ontario’s daily COVID-19 case count has risen to numbers unseen since the height of the pandemic in May when more than 500 cases were reported. Health officials reported 478 new cases of the novel coronavirus on Tuesday, which is the highest daily total since May 2 when 511 cases were confirmed. Source
  • Trudeau offers condolences to family of Toronto mosque stabbing victim

    Canada News CBC News
    Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has offered condolences to the family of a volunteer caretaker who was stabbed to death at a Toronto mosque earlier this month — while also saying reports that the incident is connected to Neo-Nazism and Islamophobia are worrisome. Source
  • World leaders, including Trump and Putin, take the stage virtually at UN meeting

    World News CBC News
    The United Nation's first virtual meeting of world leaders started Tuesday with pre-recorded speeches from heads of state kept at home by the coronavirus pandemic that will likely be a dominant theme at their video gathering this year. Source