Andrew Peters, of Richmond, was coming in from San Francisco on Monday and said that he did not know about what was happening in Virginia. He got in an Uber at Dulles International Airport to go home. It appears that the driver also did not realize how dire the traffic was and went on the highway and got stuck in traffic.
It took nine hours to get home, and cost $600 total — in addition to the original $200 Uber bill was $400 in extra charges.
The company reached out to Peters on Wednesday and apologized for what happened.
“They were sorry to hear that I had … so many problems with the app, and with the override, and with the highway and that they would love to issue me a full refund,” Peters said.
Uber spokeswoman Michelle Blackwell said that Uber has refunded Peters $600 “after this terrible ordeal and are so glad that he and his Uber driver got home safely.”
Peters said he would be fine paying the original $200 base fee and the tip. In trying to figure out what happened, he did some research on why his fare changed.
As of Wednesday, $200 has been credited to his account, and Peters said Uber told him the $400 charge will be refunded in a few days.
“There’s like an interface on the app that you can get trip help or provide driver feedback. And when I was pressing those buttons, there was an option for ‘Why did my fare change?’ And, you know, it’s traffic or construction. And if you press the button on there, it says, ‘There’s nothing we can do for that.’ … You kind of have to pay it based on how long your trip was. So that was a little frustrating. And because, you know, it isn’t a person that’s just (the) app saying those types of things, so I wasn’t able to get anybody on the phone,” Peters said.
Peters said he feels better with the refund, and his Uber driver was amazing. But it was hard to contact somebody at Uber.
“But I’m glad that they got to see what happened and that they understand why I was frustrated,” he said.
Uber said the driver will get paid, including a tip.
“We appreciate Mr. Peters’ patience with us. The process started after he initiated the refund request and he should be able to see the full refund now,” Blackwell said.
WTOP’s Nick Iannelli contributed to this report.