10 Uber Complaints (and How to Address Them)

We don’t live in a perfect world. Things go wrong sometimes. This is true in work, family, friendships, and, yes, even Uber rides. While the vast majority of rides occur without any issue, sometimes problems occur. If this happens, then what should you do as a passenger? How do you bring up complaints to Uber?

In this post, we’re going to examine 10 potential Uber complaints. Some are minor, such as having a late driver or being charged a cancellation fee. Others are more serious, such as having a driver harass you or even commit a crime.

We want to show you how to handle all of these situations so that there’s no doubt about what to do if you ever encounter them. Of course, we hope that none of the following things ever happen to you. Odds are, most of the serious ones never will. Still, it’s best to be prepared, and that’s what you’ll be after reading this guide.

Jump to:

  1. My Driver Was Late
  2. I Was Charged a Cleaning Fee
  3. I Was Charged a Cancellation Fee
  4. I Lost an Item
  5. I Was Overcharged for a Ride
  6. My Driver Was Rude
  7. I Had a Problem With Another UberPOOL Passenger
  8. My Driver Was Unsafe
  9. My Driver Harassed Me
  10. I Witnessed My Driver Commit a Crime

1. My Driver Was Late

While your Uber ride would always arrive on time in an ideal world, the reality is sometimes different. Your driver may be late for your pick up for a variety of reasons. The most likely causes are traffic or difficulty navigating to your location.

However, in some cases, it could be due to carelessness or indifference on the driver’s part. Regardless, you should feel free to alert Uber about late pickups.

To be clear, of course, we’re talking about drivers who are truly late. A couple of minutes later than the estimated time is not worth a complaint; Uber will be the first to admit that their driver arrival times are estimates only. A late driver is one who is 15, 20, or even 30 minutes late.

It’s also worth considering if the driver made any effort to contact you and explain why they were late. For instance, if you’re trying to get a ride on a major holiday or outside a crowded event, the driver could be late due to road closures or traffic. If they call you and explain that they’re on their way, then they’ve made a good faith effort to explain why they’re late.

To report a truly late driver, your best bet is to contact Uber via in-app support. We recommend this method because a late driver is not an urgent or life-threatening matter (annoying as it may be).

2. I Was Charged a Cleaning Fee

10 Uber Complaints (and How to Address Them) - cleaning fee

Cleaning fees can be a pain, but they exist to protect Uber drivers. If you spilled something in your driver’s car, then you deserve to pay the cleaning fee. You messed up, and the fee helps the driver pay for the cost of cleaning their vehicle.

On the other hand, if you were charged a cleaning fee even though you didn’t make a mess, you could be in a situation where a driver is trying to commit fraud. This is serious, and you should contact Uber customer service about it. The easiest way to do this is to go to this page. From there, you can sign into your account, select the ride for which you were charged the fee, and explain to Uber why the charge was incorrect.

3. I Was Charged a Cancellation Fee

In some situations, Uber may charge you a fee for canceling a ride. Note that Uber will alert you to this before you do it, so there’s usually not a legitimate reason to complain about it. If, however, you feel that the cancellation fee was unfair (perhaps the driver was already late when you canceled), then you can contact Uber support to dispute the fee. To do this, go to this page.

From there, you can select a reason that you think the cancellation was incorrect. You can see the choices available in the image below:

10 Uber Complaints (and How to Address Them)

They are:

  • My driver and I couldn’t connect
  • My pickup location was incorrect
  • My driver cancelled
  • The ETA was too long
  • The ETA was too short
  • My driver asked me to cancel

Note that simply choosing one of the above reasons does not guarantee a refund of the cancellation fee. For more information, consult Uber’s cancellation policy.

4. I Lost an Item

Losing something in an Uber ride is frustrating, but it happens easily. Luckily, Uber has procedures to report a lost item. All you have to do is go to the receipt for the ride in question and fill out the form. You can do this within the Uber app or via your Uber account on Uber’s website.

Note that Uber does not guarantee the return of lost items, and they will charge you a $15 fee for the return of them. This is to help compensate the driver for the time they spend finding the item and returning it to you.

To learn more about the process, consult our guide to Uber lost and found.

5. I Was Overcharged for a Ride

If you think that Uber charged you too much for a ride, it is possible to get your fare reduced or refunded. First, though, you need to be sure that there really was a possibility of an error and not just a high charge due to some other factor.

For instance, if you took a ride when surge pricing was in effect, you can’t dispute that. Uber shows you an estimate of the fare upfront, so there’s really no excuse for not knowing. The same is true of any tolls or city taxes you have to pay as part of the ride. Neither Uber nor the driver has any control over these. They’re just collecting them in accordance with the law.

In some cases, however, you may still think Uber has charged you too much. Computer errors do occur, and some drivers will attempt to cheat the system by taking unnecessarily long routes. If this happens, then your best bet is to go to Uber’s Trip Issues and Refunds page. From there, you can select an issue related to your high fare. Issues include the following:

  • My driver took a poor route
  • My pickup or drop-off location was wrong
  • The route had heavy traffic
  • Someone else took this trip
  • I paid a toll or parking fee for my driver
  • My driver made an unrequested stop
  • I was charged a cleaning fee
  • I had a different issue with my charge
  • Dispute my cancellation fee
  • Long Pickup Premiums
  • I was charged more than once for this trip
  • My fare doesn’t reflect the upfront price I was shown

From there, you’ll find the steps necessary to get a refund or adjusted fare. Again, there is no guarantee of this. Many times, the charges are either beyond Uber’s control or in accordance with their policies.

6. My Driver Was Rude

Now, we’re getting into the territory of more serious issues. The first one that comes to mind is a rude driver. This is always frustrating as a passenger, and we hope it never happens to you. However, it is possible. Maybe the driver was just having a bad day. Maybe they’re just a mean person. Whatever the reason, you should not tolerate drivers who are rude.

The best way to deal with a rude driver is in your review. You have the opportunity to leave one after each ride. For a rude driver, give whatever star rating you think is appropriate. Note that if you leave 3 stars or less, you won’t get matched with the driver in the future.

You can also make note of why you left the low rating. Don’t be afraid to go into detail about what the driver did, but try to be objective. Calling the driver curse words won’t help resolve your issue, and it just makes you look bad.

Uber takes these reviews into account when deciding if they should deactivate a driver, so your feedback does matter. However, note that one individual review will not be enough to get a driver banned from the platform (unless they broke the law or seriously violated Uber’s code of conduct).

7. I Had a Problem With Another UberPOOL Passenger

This is a tricky situation to deal with. When you use UberPOOL, you accept the possibility of a longer ride time (and the presence of additional passengers) in exchange for a lower fare. Most of the time, UberPOOL rides happen without incident.

In some cases, however, you might have a fellow passenger who was rude to you or even harassed you. If this happens, you can report it to Uber by visiting this page. Of course, if the other passenger broke the law in some way, you always have the option to report it to the police.

8. My Driver Was Unsafe

10 Uber Complaints (and How to Address Them) - unsafe driver

Uber takes safety very seriously. It’s why they have specific vehicle requirements and require drivers to pass background checks. If your driver is being reckless or does anything that makes you feel unsafe, you should report it to Uber.

Of course, the way you do this will depend on the severity of the issue. If the driver just ran a couple stop signs, then it’s probably sufficient to leave a low rating and make note of it in your review.

On the other hand, if the driver was swerving, cutting people off, or appeared to be under the influence of drugs or alcohol, then you should report it to Uber using this form on their website. If the driver appears to be an immediate danger to you or other passengers, you can also contact the police.

9. My Driver Harassed Me

Uber does not tolerate sexual harassment, verbal harassment, intimidation, or any similar behaviors. These will get a driver banned from the platform. If you experience any of these, you can contact Uber’s critical safety response line. It’s a special phone support line reserved for serious, urgent issues, and it allows you to speak directly to an Uber representative.

Of course, you shouldn’t call this phone number if your driver was just rude to you. That’s not acceptable behavior either, but it isn’t something that poses any danger to you. Tying up the critical safety response line with complaints about rude drivers makes it more difficult for passengers with serious issues to get help.

A good rule of thumb is that if a driver does something that would warrant calling the police, it’s probably worth calling the critical safety response line as well. As always, contacting the police should be your first priority in any situation where you feel in danger. Only once you’re safe should you contact the critical safety response line.

10. I Witnessed My Driver Commit a Crime

It’s unlikely this will ever happen, but it is possible that you’ll witness an Uber driver do something illegal. It could be something innocuous, like parking illegally. But it could be more serious, such as selling drugs or executing a hit and run. Again, it’s unlikely you’ll see this, but you should know what to do in case it happens.

If you see your driver commit a crime that you think is worth reporting, the first thing you should do is contact the police. Luckily, it’s pretty easy to give them the info they need to find the driver (the app shows you the driver’s license plate number and contact information).

Once you’ve made your report to the police, you can also contact Uber about it. Depending on the degree to which the issue threatened your immediate personal safety, you could either report it using this form or by calling the critical safety response line.

Get the Help You Need With the Complaints You Have

Ridesharing normally occurs without any problems. When you do have a problem, however, it’s reassuring to know how you can report it. Uber makes this easy to do via their many customer support contact methods. You may not always get the result you want (sometimes you just have to pay the fees), but you can make your voice heard.

Have an issue with a Lyft ride? Here’s our complete guide to contacting Lyft customer service. Curious what all of the above looks like from a driver’s perspective? Have a look at our guide to contacting Uber driver support.