Posted on Dec. 12, 2017

    Uber Apologized To A Customer After He Was Charged $18,500 For A Ride

    Surge pricing is getting out of control.

    Uber has apologized and refunded a customer after charging him $18,500 for a 21-minute ride.

    Hisham Salama / Twitter

    Hisham Salama took one of the most expensive Uber rides in history when he used the service to visit a friend at a hospital in Toronto over the weekend. He was charged $18,518.50 for the short drive across town and, although he initially laughed at the mistake, he started to worry when he saw the massive charge pending on his credit card.

    "I don’t know on what planet a 20-minute cab ride equals to $18,518.50," Salama told Vice Canada.

    Uber initially refused to correct the mistake. A customer service representative told Salama that based on the time and distance of the trip, "this fare is correct."

    Hisham Salama / Twitter

    "I'm no longer laughing," Salama said in a tweet demanding Uber "get their act together."

    @Uber @Uber_Support what turned out to be an honest mistake is now turning into the biggest blunder of 2017. I’m no… https://t.co/FSaRJeqXbN

    People couldn't believe it.

    Wait...this is real?! @Uber https://t.co/DWrnXnS9j6

    "How is this even technically possible?"

    How is this even technically possible? Get it together @Uber @Uber_Support and fix it. https://t.co/22FpESPZWF

    They also had some jokes.

    That's Canadian dollars isn't that like only $25 US? https://t.co/cDEIg3lcws

    Will that be cash, credit, or bitcoin? https://t.co/3YBO6F5nA6

    The public shaming eventually got results.

    "There was an error and we have provided a full refund," an Uber spokesperson told BuzzFeed Canada. "We sincerely apologize to this rider for his experience."

    Uber blamed the mistake on driver error, saying an incorrect amount was accidentally entered into the system. (In Toronto, the company lets customers order traditional taxi cabs through the app, with the fare calculated on the car's meter.)

    Uber said it's also reaching out to the customer service rep who handled the complaint to figure out what happened.

    "Thank you to everyone who tweeted and retweeted about my magical $18,500 Uber ride," Salama said after he got his refund and apology.

    Thank you to everyone who tweeted and retweeted about my magical $18,500 @Uber ride. @Uber_Support has refunded the… https://t.co/GbkXhAE0cn

    BuzzFeed Canada reached out to Salama for comment.

    Ishmael N. Daro is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in Toronto. PGP fingerprint: 5A1D 9099 3497 DA4B

    Contact Ishmael N. Daro at ishmael.daro@buzzfeed.com.

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