Uber charges Houston woman $500 for 30-mile ride

This surge pricing horror story is quite a doozy.


Alex La Ferla


Published Mar 3, 2015   Updated May 29, 2021, 9:55 am CDT

What’s the most you would pay for an Uber ride? $50? $60? How about $511? That’s what one woman from Houston, Texas was charged last week for a 30-mile ride, and she’s none too pleased about it.

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Clark and her friends decided to take the ride sharing service to and from the Houston Rodeo BBQ Cook-Off on Friday night. While the ride to the event cost them approximately $60, they were shocked when they saw the price tag for the trip back home to Humble, just north of Houston.

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“Nobody in their right mind would step into a car knowing that it was going to cost them $500 to go 30 miles,” Clark told KPRC 2, Houston’s NBC affiliate.

Clark filed a complaint with Uber, and a company representative replied via email with a summary of Uber’s surge pricing policies. “Due to high demand for rides, our fares were increased to ensure we had rides available for those who needed them,” the email reads.

KPRC also reports that the news team spoke over the phone with another Uber representative, who said Clark elected to use a more expensive form of the service on her way home. The Uber Black vehicle she rode back in would ordinarily have cost about $120, but rose to the $500 mark due to a 4.4x surge pricing multiplier in effect at the time.

Apparently, Clark wasn’t the only one affected by Uber’s surge pricing during the rodeo:

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Clark says she will not be using Uber again in the future.

H/T KPRC | Illustration via Max Fleishman

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*First Published: Mar 3, 2015, 1:06 pm CST