Uber rider charged higher fare after driver changes destination

Posted at 8:34 AM, Dec 20, 2018
and last updated 2018-12-20 10:34:34-05

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    NEW YORK (WPIX ) — Many Uber customers don’t look closely at the receipt the company emails to them after they get out of the car. That’s a mistake.

As Martha Rohena of the Bronx has learned, the receipt may show a much higher fare than the one quoted on the Uber app when you order the car.

Last month, Rohena arranged for an Uber to take her and her mother from 148th Street in the Bronx to the Empire City Casino in Yonkers. The price on the Uber app was $20.89. However, two days later, Uber emailed Rohena a receipt for $172.11.

She discovered the addresses of the pickup and destination had been changed. It said the Uber driver took them to Brooklyn and the trip took 4 hours 55 minutes.

“It didn’t make any sense at all,” Rohena said. “How were those changes made? Who has access to that? Is it the driver?”

While she attempted to contact Uber through their app, she said, “They took this money straight from my bank account. It was my rent money.”

She said after Uber failed to respond to her email, she contacted PIX11 and emailed the company again. “I told them I called the news.”

The next day, a refund of $151.22 was put back into her bank account.

This wasn’t the only Uber overcharge Rohena has dealt with. Just three months ago, the Uber app quoted a price of $32.72 to get from the Orlando Airport to her sister’s house. Shortly after the trip, Uber emailed a receipt for $86.07. Here again, the pickup and drop off addresses had been changed, and the length of time had been doubled. In addition, the driver claimed there were five passengers in the car.

“I was alone,” Rohena said. “The driver lied.”

She said it took four emails before Uber issued a refund of $53.35.

In a statement to PIX11, an Uber spokesman says both drivers have had their access to the Uber platform removed while the company investigates.

As for the false information on the receipts, “Uber did not make the changes to those receipts. In these incidents, the drivers failed to end the trip correctly, which resulted in the higher fare.”

Apparently, Uber drivers are able to make changes to the information about the trip before closing out the record and sending it to Uber. Changes to the time and distance, and number of passengers, can result in much higher fares than the price quoted before the trip began. These changes, it seems, can be made without Uber being aware of them.

So, if you’re an Uber customer, look closely at your receipts.

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