A $200 Uber from Washington Dulles International Airport to Richmond, Virginia, more than tripled in price when an unsuspecting man and his driver got stuck in a 50-mile backup on Interstate 95.
Andrew Peters was returning from a trip to San Francisco, California, and decided to Uber the 127 miles to his home.
"We hopped on the first exit and then it was just, we stopped moving right there. There were cars behind us. There was nowhere to go,” Peters said. "It was like being in some weird parking lot."
From start to finish, Peters spent 14 hours in the Uber, most of it in the historic, icy pile-up on I-95 after a snowstorm battered the D.C. area.
“People were walking around a lot, which was crazy,” Peters said. “I was like, I don’t want to go too far out there in case traffic starts moving again.”
Once traffic did start moving Tuesday, Peters and his driver managed to get home safely.
He added a $100 tip to the $200 fare, and later the rideshare service added a $400 surcharge, for a whopping total of $701.47.
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(For reference, his flight from San Francisco to the airport in Virginia, which took about 4.5 hours and covered more than 2,800 miles, cost $300.)
“It ticked me off because I had no way of knowing that I would be stuck in this traffic jam for that long, and I don’t feel like that’s fair because they have the directions. I have no say in which way the Uber goes,” Peters said.
His bank refused to pay the fee, and fortunately, the nightmare didn't last.
“We have refunded Mr. Peters and greatly appreciate his patience,” Uber announced Wednesday. “We’re glad that he and the driver got home safely.”
Now, Peters says his New Year's resolution is to be more careful about calling a car in the snow.