I used to be a big fan of Uber. Our business has been using them for getting around London since they first launched here. But this incidence has made me lose all confidence in Uber.
On Wednesday I arrived back in London from a trip to the Midlands. As I was going through my emails, I noticed one from Uber that made me go cold. It was advising me that Uber had charged £609 to my credit card for a minicab ride in the early hours of the morning.
The ride originated in London, N18 at just before midnight and terminated in Ware, Herts, SE12 9PT at just before 4am – a 4-hour round trip of 132 miles.
Thanks to the technology deployed by Uber, I have the locations and all the data – and, more importantly, so does Uber!
Thinking it must be a hoax/scam email, my first call was to the credit card company. They said the charge from Uber had been received and asked if I wanted to dispute it? Hell yes!!!
They said that the only option under their system was to treat the charge as disputed. Pending an investigation, I should not have to pay anything.
Realising that Uber don’t provide any way for a customer to call them, even in an emergency, I emailed their support address expecting to get a prompt response. Fat chance! De rien!!
In the meantime, my mobile phone received a notification that the Uber I had ordered was on its way to pick me up! What?!!!
This did at least give me the option of calling the driver who was supposedly on his way to pick me up! So I did that and tried to explain the situation to him. It was a bizarre conversation. He was unable to communicate, which is sometimes the case with Uber drivers in my experience. But I got the feeling that he didn’t want to understand what I was trying to tell him. The best he could manage was, “So you want to cancel the job?” Hell yes!!! I didn’t order the frigging job!!!
So I emailed Uber support again thinking this new info would certainly give rise to an urgent response. De rien!!
Next I called the Police Fraud and Cybercrime unit. I spoke with a nice Scottish lady who had never even heard of Uber, which made the conversation unduly laborious. A call centre in Scotland dealing with a local London crime, really?
Apparently I’ll get an update in 28 days! Are you kidding me?! Has the world gone mad?!!! People are trying to steal hundreds of pounds from me as we speak and nobody has the slightest sense of urgency, let alone outrage?!
I googled this Uber scam and found that others had had similar experiences, most notably Anthea Turner, who apparently was equally astonished at Uber’s lack of customer care.
Eventually I received a casual, boiler plate email from Uber. They had apparently investigated the matter and found no breach of their system. Really? Do they think I fell off the back of a turnip truck?! But they did say they had refunded my money, so everything’s alright then, is it?! Let’s let the criminals go on with their scam, shall we? Let’s not worry them with consequences!
I’ve come to the opinion that it’s actually becoming pointless these days taking the trouble to report these matters, because nobody can be bothered to get off their backsides and DO anything about it! I hope I’m wrong, but (depressingly) I don’t think I am.
There’s no doubt that Uber is a cheap alternative to a Black Taxi, but I’ve now come round to the idea that you get what you pay for!
Tony Coe, Founder & CEO, Saunders 1865 – The VIP Relocation Company