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Uber: how can a driver cancel but get paid?

Ok, I’m new to this online ride stuff, but today at the Montpellier, France train station no taxis were available. So, I ordered a Uber for the second time in my life but 1) the driver didn’t respond to my two questions (I speak French), 2) didn’t show up, 3) canceled. Then Uber gives him my money because he says he waited, which they moved into my imaginary wallet when I protested.

So, does this happen regularly?
What do you do—just use it later? It will be the last time I use Uber.
Do people do charge backs on this?
Do you see a difference with Uber in the US and overseas?
Does this happen with Bolt because they are new in the south of France.

BTW, the taxi we took was the same price as the invisible Uber.

Posted by
2119 posts

I had this happen in Bordeaux with FreeNow/Bolt. The driver waited, didn’t pick us up for some reason, and then drove off. My App showed that we were in the cab, taking the ride but of course we were not. I complained via their app, they were able to get confirmation that we didn’t actually ride (not sure how), and we received a credit.

I made a point of using the credit in Toulouse a week later since I didn’t know when I’d ever use the App again in France.

Posted by
3056 posts

Happens in the US too. We “followed” the driver on the app until he was about 3 blocks from our house then made a u-turn and headed back to the airport and we were charged. Dave made a quick screen shot of the u-turn and called Uber. They credited our account but we were forced to drive to the airport and pay for 2 weeks of parking. We haven’t used Uber since…

Oh, and the driver indicated that we’d been picked up which we could all see didn’t happen.

Posted by
12953 posts

We had this happen in New York—-the driver did not come to where we were but waited 3 blocks away and said we had to come to him (walking with luggage). And then he did not wait for us. My husband contested the charge with Uber and it was reversed, but since then we have used Lyft instead.

Is Bolt a European ride-share app? I would be careful with them. I had an attempted fraudulent charge from their food-delivery service ( about a month ago, when I was ( and still am) at home in the US. My credit card company caught it, declined the charge and canceled my card. I have no idea how they got my card number—-must have been some online purchase at another company which then sold the number.

Posted by
8283 posts

The driver didn't put on his tracking locator, which I found unusual, but it indicates that he never intended to pick us up. He waited somewhere because "1 minute away" stayed on my phone for a while.
When I contested the charge, there was no option for a refund. It went directly into my "wallet." My husband found a link where I was able to write write a complaint and request a refund. At least he didn't get to keep the cancellation fee but Uber took it which is just as bad.

Adios Uber.

Update: Uber refunded me after we found a way to write them. Deleting the app.

Posted by
116 posts

Mona - how do you call Uber? We had a bad experience with a driver canceling and could not find a way to complain. This happened in the San Diego area. We were waiting for a ride to the airport at 5 in the morning, and ended up having to drive ourselves and park in long-term parking. It cost us about $250 and we almost missed our flight. No more Uber for us.

Posted by
116 posts

By the way, the same happened to us a couple of times in New Orleans. The driver apparently waited a few blocks away and then left.

Posted by
3056 posts

We were able to get help from the app menu in the Uber app:

How it works
Open your Driver app
Tap the menu icon
Tap Help
Navigate to the issue you’re experiencing
If phone support is available for your issue type, tap Call Support

Posted by
1199 posts

Thanks for the article link Michael Schnieder. It may explain an experience we had in Los Cabos last spring. I didn't cancel and he eventually showed up. We could see him parked down below our resort while we waited.