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

  • Norway: At least 3 injured in family-related stabbing attack

    World News CTV News
    COPENHAGEN, Denmark - A suspect was arrested in Norway after at least three people were stabbed with a sharp object, leaving one critically injured Friday, police said. Police at first said the attack in the village of Nore as random, but later clarified that there was “a family relationship” between the assailant and at least one of the victims. Source
  • Anti-abortion activist is charged with stalking a California doctor who provides abortions

    World News CTV News
    A Los Angeles man is facing multiple charges after prosecutors allege he was part of a group of anti-abortion activists who targeted a women's health clinic and stalked a doctor who provides abortion services, the San Francisco District Attorney's Office announced Thursday. Source
  • Ukraine updates: 12 killed in Russian attacks in Severodonetsk

    World News CTV News
    What's happening in Ukraine today and how are countries around the world responding? Read live updates on Vladimir Putin and Russia's invasion of Ukraine. KYIV, Ukraine -- Russian forces attacked the cities of Lysychansk and Severodonetsk in Ukraine's eastern region of Luhansk, the region's governor said Friday. Source
  • As Biden visits Asia, China launches South China Sea drills

    World News CTV News
    BEIJING - China is holding military exercises in the disputed South China Sea coinciding with U.S. President Joe Biden's visits to South Korea and Japan that are largely focused on countering the perceived threat from Beijing. Source
  • Sri Lanka closes schools, limits work amid fuel shortage

    World News CTV News
    COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - Sri Lankan authorities closed schools and asked public officials not to come to work in a desperate move to prepare for an acute fuel shortage that is expected to last days amid the nation's worst economic crisis in decades. Source
  • Riding the waves off Nova Scotia, this surfer says she felt cancer-free

    Canada News CBC News
    It could be the most beautiful summer day in Nova Scotia or the harshest day of winter; if there are waves, Amber Spurrell will surf. Even while undergoing six rounds of chemotherapy. "Getting in the ocean allowed me not to have cancer for a few minutes and just be," says Spurrell, 42, who was diagnosed last year with breast cancer. Source
  • Canadian study offers important clue to why some back pain becomes chronic

    Canada News CBC News
    A study conducted by researchers at McGill University and scientists from Italy suggests that blocking inflammation after injury might make that pain chronic — a finding that challenges the standard approach to treating pain. Chronic pain — especially in the lower back — is a common ailment, but scientists don't know why some back injuries resolve themselves while others cause suffering for years. Source
  • With Kenney's exit, the 'resistance' era is over — but something louder might follow

    Canada News CBC News
    Late in 2018, Maclean's magazine put five Conservative leaders on its cover and billed them as "the resistance" — an apparent play on the name of the movement that had emerged to oppose Donald Trump in the United States. Source
  • This Ontario election is about many things. Indigenous issues aren't among them, observers say

    Canada News CBC News
    Over the last three weeks, Ontario election campaign leaders and candidates have addressed a range of issues — including affordability, housing and health care — and offered promises leading up to the vote next month. But there has yet to be substantive conversation about Indigenous people and issues, say several current and former political leaders and analysts who spoke with CBC News. Source
  • 'Great replacement' conspiracy unified white supremacists long before Buffalo, N.Y., shooting

    World News CBC News
    Whether it goes by the "great replacement" or another name, the conspiracy theory embraced by the accused Buffalo, N.Y., gunman has inspired several mass shootings in recent years — in Canada and around the world. Ten people died in the attack at Tops Friendly Market in a predominantly Black neighbourhood of Buffalo on Saturday. Source