Uber driver ‘checked’ the windows and turned a 12 minute trip into an hour trip
Three teenage girls were taken for an hour by Uber, which included walking through the tunnel as they tried to get from downtown to Bootle.
Sophie Frankpitt, 19, and her friends Madeleine and Poppy were visiting the city from Somerset after a difficult year in lockdown and had booked an airbnb for several days.
When they arrived from the coach in Liverpool city center last weekend, they booked an Uber at their Airbnb which was near Derby Road in the Kirkdale area.
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Sophie’s app quoted her a price of £ 9 for what should have been a short 12 minute ride.
Instead, the girls were taken on what they described as a “very intimidating” hour-long journey, which took them through the tunnels of the Mersey to Wirral.
Sophie said: “The driver had five stars on Uber so we thought he would be good. The ride should have been basically a straight line and last 12 minutes.
“But it lasted about an hour, he took us to Wirral and even made us pay the toll.”
She added: “We felt incredibly intimidated, we didn’t know what to do.”
One of the girls tried to roll the window down to get some fresh air, but they said the driver had taken the controls for the window and pulled it up.
Sophie added: “This only added to the intimidating nature of the trip, we felt helpless and really uncomfortable.”
The quick-witted girls, who had texted each other in the back of the car, started talking loudly about how they would meet one of their dads and boyfriends.
This seemed to alert the driver, who turned around and eventually took them to their destination – albeit with an overall bill of £ 40.
Sophie said: “We are three young women, we felt intimidated and in danger, and we would hate for other young women to have the same experience – especially if they were alone.”
Sophie and her mother Catherine have repeatedly complained to Uber and requested a refund for the trip, but have been told repeatedly that the matter is considered closed and a refund will not be issued.
However, after ECHO contacted Uber, the company has since refunded Sophie’s account and said it is investigating what happened.
Catherine, Sophie’s mother, said: “We think the driver may have been trying to pull a fast after seeing three young girls who were clearly new to the city, but they were very shaken and nervous after that.
“It is such a shame that they had this experience at the start of a fun trip to Liverpool after such a difficult time.”
Sophie added that she was disappointed that it took so long for Uber – and for the media to be involved – to act and offer a refund.
She said: “Uber refused to reimburse us three times, despite having explained everything in detail twice.
“We really don’t want other young girls going through something like this.”
A spokesperson for Uber said, “The safety of everyone who uses the Uber app is a top priority, and we’re sorry the group had such a bad experience with us. We are currently investigating what is happening. ‘passed and have refunded the user in the meantime. “
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