• Austria's news in English

Uber users complain of new year price surge

The Local · 5 Jan 2016, 10:30

Published: 05 Jan 2016 10:30 GMT+01:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Above normal rates were charged on New Year’s Eve and early on New Year’s Day - with some bills up to eight times higher than the normal fare. One customer complained that they had to hand over €166 for a 30 minute trip through Vienna’s city centre.

Uber’s pricing policy has been slammed by the Vienna Chamber of Commerce. “We knew this would happen. One company is bringing the entire industry into disrepute because it wants to make a quick buck and believes it can flout the rules that are there to protect customers,” said Davor Sertic, chairman of the transport and traffic section of the Chamber of Commerce.

Uber has defended itself against the accusations, saying that all its customers were informed in an email on December 30th that fares on New Year’s Eve would be higher than usual at peak times.

It said that this information was also clearly available on the Uber app, and before customers booked their taxi they were asked to confirm that they were aware of the surcharge. “Once the demand subsided, the prices became lower. We feel that we gave our users sufficient information about the surge pricing,” a company spokesman said.

Some angry passengers have been talking about bringing a class action suit against Uber - but this could prove fruitless as Uber did warn passengers that journeys would cost more. Some passengers have said they are not able to remember if the app did notify them of the surcharge prior to the trip - but they may have been drunk or very tired.

Story continues below…

To avoid a price surcharge at busy times the Vienna Chamber of Commerce recommends only using licensed Vienna city taxis, which have to comply with rules on regulated tariffs. They can be identified by the ‘TX’ on their number plates.

Uber users in the US, Canada and Australia have also complained about the New Year's Eve price surge.

For more news from Austria, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Austrian policeman sentenced over 'Heil Hitler' salute
Photo: Flickr

A policeman in Austria was sentenced on Thursday for shouting "Heil Hitler" at a driver during a traffic check at the Hungarian border in April.

Scary clown craze endangers crucial work of clown 'doctors'
Photo: Bojan Tavcar

Within the last couple weeks, disturbing events involving masked individuals has caught public attention in Austria.

Chimney sweep rescues lost mushroom picker
Photo: James Lindsey/Wikimedia

A 76-year-old Austrian man who went out mushroom picking almost froze to death after getting lost and spending the night in the forest.

Refugees sold into forced prostitution
File photo: UNHCR

Female refugees are being sold into forced prostitution in Austria, a police investigation into human trafficking has found.

Driverless bus takes a spin around Salzburg's old town
The Arma driverless shuttle bus. Photo: Navya

A driverless minibus has made a test journey in the city of Salzburg.

No jail time for asylum seeker who dumped baby in road
Photo: Paul Gillingwater

A man who grabbed his own child and dumped her in the middle of a busy road has been given a nine-month suspended sentence.

Freedom Party leader may face hate speech charges
Heinz-Christian Strache. Photo: Facebook/Personal

The leader of Austria’s Freedom Party may face charges of “hate speech” for posts made by other users on his Facebook page.

The Local List
Five Austrian films we promise won't make you depressed
Still from the comedy Was hat uns bloß so ruiniert.

With the Viennale film festival opening on Thursday, we thought it’s time to take a look at the best of Austrian cinema.

Clown scares passengers at Vienna’s Praterstern station
Generic photo: Graeme Maclean/Flick

The first “scary clown” has been spotted in Vienna - at the Praterstern train and metro station which is a known hotspot for crime and addicts.

Up to 90 percent of failed asylum seekers 'not deported'
Refugees and migrants arriving in Greece. Photo: UNHCR/A.McConnell

Up to 90 percent of failed asylum seekers are not being deported from Austria because their countries of origin will not agree to readmit them.

Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
12 brilliant German words you won't find in English
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Five films which will change your mind about Austrian cinema
Those surprising Austrians!
Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
100 years since the last emperor's death
Afghani family's new home in Austria
Der you learn Deutsch?
Delighted by the light
Beware these passport scams
Of course we skipped Oarsch
Foodies rejoice at the choice!
Travel & Tourism
10 years after her escape from captivity
Surviving the Brexit for British expats
Day 2 of the World Bodypainting Festival 2016
Is Islam hostile to Western society?
Bodypainting festival in southern Austria
Europe's ice cream capital
Best Austrian beauty spots
Travel & Tourism
Three days in Vienna as a tourist
How to make friends in Austria
jobs available