Let me preface this by saying that I really like Uber. I do not get to use it that much because it is not available where I live, but every time I travel I try to use Uber as much as possible. All my interactions with Uber had been positive until a recent trip to Hong Kong.
I requested an Uber to get from our hotel to the airport. I was traveling with my wife and daughter and we had a lot of luggage, plus a stroller, so I requested an uberVan. I had been standing at the lobby of our hotel like an idiot for about ten minutes waiting for our a van to arrive until I realize that the sedan that was parked right in front of the hotel entrance was our Uber.
The driver tried to explain why he had showed up in a different vehicle-type, but I could not understand him. Frankly, I did not care about his explanation. If I am requesting a specific vehicle type, I expect that vehicle type to show up. If you are an Uber driver and your designated Uber car is not available, then you should not be working that day.
I could not see how all our luggage would fit inside that sedan, so my first reaction was to request another uberVan since there was no way we would fit in a taxi. Unfortunately, though, the closest uberVan was 20 minutes away. We were already a little late, so there was no way I could wait 20 more minutes. With no better options in sight, I instructed the bell boys to see if they could find a way to fit all our luggage inside the sedan.
At this time I realized our outlook of achieving that was even bleaker given that about half the trunk was occupied by the driver’s stuff. Nonetheless, someway, somehow we were able to fit everything in the car thanks in great part to making complete use of the front passenger’s seat.
After arriving at the airport I noticed that, not surprisingly, I had been charged the uberVan rate, which was more expensive than the sedan rate. After getting back home I wrote a complaint to Uber. It took them four days to respond to my complaint and, when they did, they requested additional information about the vehicle and the driver. I provided as much as I could. They apologized and proceeded to provide an approximately $11 refund for the fare difference.
Now, I was not expecting them to issue a full refund or to even provide a credit to our account for the total amount charged, but I was definitely expecting more than that. The fare difference refund was the bare minimum they could do. They gave the impression that this was simply an issue of Uber charging an incorrect rate when the problem was that Uber, via its driver, was deceiving its customers with regards to specific vehicle types.
I wrote Uber back to let them know that I was not satisfied with their response and that they had not addressed the most concerning issue. This time it took them five days to respond. Again, they apologized, but did not offer anything else.
At this point I do not feel like if something worse happens with Uber in the future that they will respond appropriately. They had their chance to reassure my trust in them and they failed to do so.
Did Uber get this right? Have you had similar issues with Uber?