Uber's 'surge pricing' hits Philadelphia
Back in 2011, ride-sharing service Uber got into some hot water with its passenger base for charging many times more the average rate in times of high call volume in a scheme called "surge pricing." Two years later, they haven't learned their lesson-and Philly is paying the price.
Uber’s ‘surge pricing’ hits Philadelphia
Back in 2011, ride-sharing service Uber got into some hot water with its passenger base for charging many times more the average rate in times of high call volume in a scheme called “surge pricing.” Two years later, they haven’t learned their lesson—and Philly is paying the price.
Uber justified their rate hike in 2011, saying that the rise in price during elevated request periods allowed more drivers to get on the road to pick up stranded passengers. In that instance, which took place during the winter holiday season, customers were paying upwards of $100 for a usual $20 ride.
Now, though, it looks like inclement weather has been tacked on as a reason to raise prices. Over the weekend here in Philly, reports from Twitter indicate that Uber drivers were charging an average of three times the usual rate thanks to the snow that came our way. One man even paid $75 to go less than a mile:
@Uber_Philly wow! Got charged $75 for a less than a mile ride! Insane!— Max (@Max_Philly) December 15, 2013
@Uber_Philly pretty weak that your price gouging bc of the snow- I can see an added fee but 3x is insane— Ryan OHara (@Rockohara) December 14, 2013
Bad, sure, but not as bad as the rates in cities like New York and Chicago that topped out at seven times the average charge. Customers, not surprisingly, have not been happy.
Meanwhile, though, Philadelphia’s taxi system remains at the same price—even in poor weather.