Uber Fraud - Driver induced?

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Old Nov 10, 18, 9:52 pm
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Uber Fraud - Driver induced?

Perhaps someone with driver or other insight can explain just what might have occurred. I'll round the numbers (for ease), although the fraud was a very round number.

I took a POOL trip on Wednesday to SF. $15. He didn't pick anyone else up. Felt kind of bad for the driver, but so it goes, not my problem. At some point last night/early this AM, UBER sends me an updated receipt with an extra $15 for tolls/surcharges/etc. There's a $4 bridge toll at the hour of my trip. I inquired, and the reply was the "I-80 Surcharge $15." This is a load of crap, because there's no such surcharge. I went 4 rounds with UBER - including UBER telling me it could be from Toll, HOV use, etc. All a load of crap, because the route doesn't permit under 3 in the HOV lane at any price during HOV hours, and anyone can use during non-hours. Yes, four rounds of this, including " We understand your concern here as this fare was adjusted without your prior approval. However, this was done as your driver wrote in to let us know that Tolls, surcharges and fees were charge in this trip. " Notwithstanding my repeated explanations, and understanding that toll of $4 may have been somehow omitted, although it is typically calculated in the fare, and depending on the number of riders, you actually get a credit back, after 4 rounds I finally received this reply: " I've reviewed your trip and refunded this charge. I can confirm that no toll or surcharge applies. You’ll see the updated amount in your account, and you’ll also receive an updated receipt via email. "

So, was this driver-induced fraud because he didn't pick up anyone else, wanted to earn what he would have with another rider (the non-pool fare was about $30 when I requested the ride) and UBER allows a driver to input a bogus random charge, call it whatever he wants, and hope no one notices?
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Old Nov 19, 18, 8:32 pm
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I thought that drivers got paid the full "regular" fare even for a pool.

Uber is a dishonest, customer unfriendly company. Their business model seems to be to charge fake charges (like the one that you are talking about) to the customer, refund the ones who complain for long enough, and pocket the money from the ones who don't. Every company makes the occasional mistake, but this sort of thing just happens too often, an the "mistakes" are always in their favor and never in yours. I have no doubt that it's intentional on their part. I can't imagine how many millions of dollars per year they pocket from charges like this, where people don't notice or can't be bothered to follow up with customer service. How many people are going to take the time to email back and forth 4 times over $15?

About a year ago, after Uber charged me $5 because the driver canceled, I just asked them to close my account and switched 100% to lyft. It's just not worth dealing with them (or any dishonest company). You have $200 / year in credit from amex? Still not worth it. Your time has more value than that.

Just for fun, look at Uber's BBB rating. Then look at Lyft's. Night and day....
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Old Nov 20, 18, 9:03 am
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Originally Posted by VegasGambler View Post
I thought that drivers got paid the full "regular" fare even for a pool.

Uber is a dishonest, customer unfriendly company. Their business model seems to be to charge fake charges (like the one that you are talking about) to the customer, refund the ones who complain for long enough, and pocket the money from the ones who don't. Every company makes the occasional mistake, but this sort of thing just happens too often, an the "mistakes" are always in their favor and never in yours. I have no doubt that it's intentional on their part. I can't imagine how many millions of dollars per year they pocket from charges like this, where people don't notice or can't be bothered to follow up with customer service. How many people are going to take the time to email back and forth 4 times over $15?

About a year ago, after Uber charged me $5 because the driver canceled, I just asked them to close my account and switched 100% to lyft. It's just not worth dealing with them (or any dishonest company). You have $200 / year in credit from amex? Still not worth it. Your time has more value than that.

Just for fun, look at Uber's BBB rating. Then look at Lyft's. Night and day....
I've had to dispute back to back Uber ride charges and it's just not worth it at times. In some cases a ride that was supposed to be under $X ended up being 3$X+ with a map showing the driver going places that I had never been to, never requested and never was at during the times of the supposed ride. And tolls weren't the issue. After a series of complaints they refunded the money but it basically meant that most of my Amex Uber credit went to waste as did my time. It seemed like the driver deliberately left open the trip until he got another fare in the vicinity and probably stopped somewhere in between for the better part of the hour after he dropped my party off, but it could also have been due to incompetence. Either way, it is disappointing when it's not as straight as an old school taxi and even more expensive than a regular taxi.
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Old Nov 20, 18, 9:14 am
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Odd. In all the places I use Uber, there is a flat fee quoted for the ride. If it's $20, that + tip are what I pay. That fee includes any tolls, airport fees and the like, which may apply.

Don't worry about the POOL driver, he is paid a contracted rate. Uber makes a killing if there are pickups and loses money if it is just you. But, that is an Uber business decision.
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Old Nov 20, 18, 10:19 am
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Overall, my experiences have been ok, and this is the first time that I've ever had some "surprise" surcharge. My fares charged have typically been identical to the quote. And when I've had an occasional issue, typically the first message gets the matter resolved. Looks like my luck may have run out.
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Old Nov 20, 18, 11:13 am
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I'm a Uber driver, and can say that the rate we get paid on pool rides are slightly less than a X ride. Uber does indeed make a killing on pool rides, as driver all we get paid is mileage and time, + $1 for each extra person. Basically one rider will be a loss ride for uber, while the others will be pure profit. I'm not familiar with SFO tool charges, so I cant comment on that, however, I can say that I myself have been short changed on toll fees as well. I email Uber support the details of the toll that was missed, along with my transponder activity clearly marking the date and time of toll usage. The first response from Uber is always an automated one saying that they reviewed the ride and it shows I did not go through any tolls. I again correspond to them to please look at my transponder activity, which I already have checked marked from the first email I submitted. Second response from Uber they admit their mistake and add the toll to my earnings. I'm not sure if this is charged back to the rider or not, perhaps it does. Funny thing is, that this particular toll is problematic for uber as every time I have to take it I never receive my proper credit and I have to repeat this email exchange with support. There is also another one that they have the wrong amount credited, they are a quarter off & I also go through this process all over. You will think that technology company as they are would have all the proper toll charges in order to debit/credit accordingly, specially when riders and drivers have complained about the charges.
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Old Nov 20, 18, 2:42 pm
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Originally Posted by GUWonder View Post
I've had to dispute back to back Uber ride charges and it's just not worth it at times. In some cases a ride that was supposed to be under $X ended up being 3$X+ with a map showing the driver going places that I had never been to, never requested and never was at during the times of the supposed ride. And tolls weren't the issue. After a series of complaints they refunded the money but it basically meant that most of my Amex Uber credit went to waste as did my time. It seemed like the driver deliberately left open the trip until he got another fare in the vicinity and probably stopped somewhere in between for the better part of the hour after he dropped my party off, but it could also have been due to incompetence. Either way, it is disappointing when it's not as straight as an old school taxi and even more expensive than a regular taxi.
I've had something like this (not this extreme) happen to me on multiple occasions. I don't blame uber for that -- it was probably just driver error (possibly malice, but probably just error).

Once I requested an Uber pool and it sent me (and charged me for) an uber X with a massive surge charge.

Two or three times, I had Uber charge me a $5 cancellation fee when the driver canceled. I've seen that happen to my friend when I was standing right beside him as well, so I assume that it is (or at least was) a fairly common problem. The last time they did this (2.5 years ago) I just requested a refund and closed my account. I've been exclusively with lyft ever since and things have been much better. Mistakes are much more rare, and, when they do happen, they are immediately corrected. No automated responses blaming the customer for the error.

My only surprise from this thread is that it's the OP's first real issue. I was under the impression is that issues like this were fairly common.
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Old Nov 25, 18, 11:10 pm
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Cancellation fees can be charged after 5 minutes of waiting time at the PU location. If you're not ready after 3 notifications and being able to see the driver's arrival on the app it's no one's fault but your own if the driver cancels on you. Also, if the pax cancels when the driver has been enroute to the PU for a predetermined period you can be charged.

Don't like it, you can take the bus.... ..they don't charge a cancellation fee, but they also don't wait for you for 5 minutes either.

You're not paying black car rates with Uber X......don't expect the same service.
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Old Nov 28, 18, 12:10 am
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Originally Posted by KDS777 View Post
Cancellation fees can be charged after 5 minutes of waiting time at the PU location. If you're not ready after 3 notifications and being able to see the driver's arrival on the app it's no one's fault but your own if the driver cancels on you. Also, if the pax cancels when the driver has been enroute to the PU for a predetermined period you can be charged.

Don't like it, you can take the bus.... ..they don't charge a cancellation fee, but they also don't wait for you for 5 minutes either.

You're not paying black car rates with Uber X......don't expect the same service.
I don't think you understand.

Driver does not show up. Instead, they cancel. There are no notifications that the driver is there (after all, the driver is not there). Uber fraudulently charges the rider a $5 cancellation fee. If the rider complains they will give a $5 credit. If not they keep the $5.

No need to take a bus. There is this company called Lyft which provides the same service, minus the rampant fraud.
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Old Nov 28, 18, 4:58 am
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Originally Posted by VegasGambler View Post
There is this company called Lyft which provides the same service, minus the rampant fraud.
What they don't have in rampant fraud, they make up for with poor app engineering and inept (but still not as bad a Uber's) customer service. They both aren't great, and Lyft is only a marginally better experience than Uber. I wish I had the option to take the bus.
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Old Nov 28, 18, 12:09 pm
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Originally Posted by diburning View Post
What they don't have in rampant fraud, they make up for with poor app engineering and inept (but still not as bad a Uber's) customer service. They both aren't great, and Lyft is only a marginally better experience than Uber. I wish I had the option to take the bus.
My only complaint about Lyft if that Lyft Line is completely useless. I find their customer service very good, often giving me refunds that I am not requesting or expecting.

Last week, I had a driver drop me off a block away from my destination (hotel) and insist that it was the correct spot when I asked (is this the hotel? it doesn't look like a hotel...) It was my first time ever in that city, so I ended wandering around, rolling my bag behind me for a few minutes, looking for my hotel on Google maps. I gave the guy a 3 star rating and wrote this is the comments. I honestly was not expecting anything. If they had given me a $5 credit I would have thought that that was a nice customer service gesture. Within 5 minutes, Lyft had sent me an email apologizing and refunding my entire ride. That was completely unexpected and unnecessary.

That is what uber used to be like, about 4 years ago. At some point, about 2-3 years ago, they noticably adopted an extremely customer-unfriendly (even hostile) attitude. The default response from "customer service" changed to being "blame the customer" for any issue at all. The fact that this happened almost overnight leads me to believe that there was some direction from upper management to protect revenue and sacrifice customer service to do so. That's when they lost me as a customer.

You don't want to take a bus in San Francisco. The homeless people smell really bad and many of them just ride the buses all day. The way to get around SF is to walk, or take a lyft is it's too far.
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Old Nov 28, 18, 2:46 pm
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I gave a driver a 2 star rating once for being unable to find the exit to the parking lot, and then was driving erratically because he was dozing off. It wasn't safe, but he got me home safely, hence the two stars. I wrote in the comments about how he needed directions to get out of a parking lot, and how he was dozing off.

The response I got from Lyft was "I reviewed your ride and found that there was no issue or changes needed with the fare you were charged."

This is the kind of garbage I expect from Uber, not Lyft.
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Old Nov 28, 18, 4:03 pm
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If he is dozing off, I'd strongly suggest telling him to let you out of the car and end the ride, possibly calling the police, and then calling another lyft.

I've done this before with an Uber driver who was clearly high.

Whether you get a refund is secondary; your safety should be your primary concern.
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Old Nov 28, 18, 4:56 pm
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I didn’t ask for or want a refund, just wanted to let them know. They didn’t seem to care.
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Old Dec 2, 18, 12:32 pm
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Originally Posted by VegasGambler
I don't think you understand.
Well, I have been driving UBER X full time for the last 7 months. Done over 3,000 trips with a 4.98 rating. And you ?

If the driver cancels a trip before he gets to the pickup point, at any time, there is no cancellation fee. Drivers do not cancel as a rule, since too many cancellations will result in deactivation of the driver's account.

If the pax cancels after the driver has travelled a certain amount of distance towards the pickup point, there is a fee.

If the driver arrives at the pickup point, the softwares GPS triggers the timer which counts down 5 minutes, and then the driver can only cancel at that time and collect the fee. Of course, if pax cancels, at that time, there is a fee.

$5.00 of which $1.00 goes to UBER in all cases.

Pretty clear cut and straight forward. Be standing with your toes at the curb, as you receive three notifications and watch me arrive on the GPS, and you'll never pay the fee.

If someone isn't where they are supposed to be I text and phone them, and wait another 2-3 minutes. If they don't reach out to me I cancel, collect my fee and move on. We're busy and not your babysitter. How would that be rampant fraud on UBER's part and/or my fault as a driver ?

Last edited by KDS777; Dec 2, 18 at 12:38 pm
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