My Laughable & Terrible Uber Customer Service Experience

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Uber Customer Service Complaint Experience

Uber Customer Service Complaint Experience

In the digital age it has become easier than ever to outsource customer service. All a company needs to do is to write a script and have their agents copy and paste over and over. (Or write the same thing over and over again in different words.) Who cares if the script has nothing to do with the problem that the customer is facing? Copy. Paste.

I run into this quite often when dealing with Amazon Seller Support. Trying to get someone to actually read your issue and respond in a unique way is a hopeless task. Now, it seems that Uber is joining the party. I used to find their customer service to be good, but this past week I learned they are on the copy/paste bandwagon.

It all started when this arrived in my mailbox:

This seems like a generous offer. 50% off up to $10 per ride. And “the discount has already been applied” to my account. That is great, except what if I want to use a different promo I already have? Well, I found out. Last week I headed to Haiti for a mileage run and took Uber to the airport. For that ride I wanted to use a promo I had in my account for a free ride up to $20, but instead only received $10 off because of this promo.

Figuring this was a mistake and that Uber’s stellar customer service team would fix it, I contacted them through the app. I then received the following reply:

In this case, it looks like a different promotion was applied to this trip.
Only one promotion can be applied per trip. If you have more than one promotion on your account, the last promotion added will be the first to be applied.
Please let us know if you have additional questions.

Ok they still aren’t understanding that I didn’t apply that promo. Surely they will fix it. So I write back to clarify what happened. Here is what I received back.

Sorry to hear about what happened, Shawn. I understand how important this is and I want to sort this out for you.

You can add as many promo codes to your account as you’d like, but only one will apply per trip taken.

The last code entered will be the first to apply, so if you’re holding on to a particular code for a specific trip, you should enter it right before you take that trip. Any difference between the promo and fare amount will be charged to your payment method selected. Any balance not used will not roll-over.

Ugh. I DIDN’T APPLY THE PROMO. Ok, maybe I’m not being clear. So I write this short and simple reply.

I didn’t add that 50% off promo to my account. You added it automatically. Please escalate this to a supervisor and get it fixed immediately.

Predictably their response was of no help. In fact, this reply was a bit ironic.

Once a promo code is added to your account, it will automatically apply to the next trip you take. Once a promotion has been applied, it cannot be re-issued.

Earn free rides anytime by inviting friends to sign up. When someone you refer takes a first trip, you’ll receive a free ride.

Earn free rides? You mean like the one I was trying to use when you forced a promo code on my account to give me a lesser discount? Notice there was no mention of a supervisor escalation from them either. I decided to try one more time, simply asking for an escalation.

Thanks for reaching out, Shawn. Happy to explain how promotions work.

Promo codes on your account will automatically apply towards the next trip you take that meets the promotion’s terms. Promotions will apply on a last-in, first-out basis.

Thank you for your understanding.

Thanks for that explanation! I didn’t understand it the first 3 times you guys told me that, but now I do. You are so awesome. Apparently I like pain because I responded angrily thanking him for copying and pasting the same rhetoric. Predictably no supervisor got involved but I did receive this bold lettering and all.

You can add as many promo codes to your account as you’d like, but only one will apply per trip taken.

The last code entered will be the first to apply, so if you’re holding on to a particular code for a specific trip, you should enter it right before you take that trip. Any difference between the promo and fare amount will be charged to your payment method selected. Any balance not used will not roll-over.

I just want to remind you that many promo codes are reserved for new users only, so you can apply a maximum of one new user code to your account before your first trip.

I like this guy’s approach. No, he didn’t help me at all, but he did school me in the ways of new user promo codes. The More You Know. By this point you are saying, “Shawn GIVE UP!” But digital ink is cheap so I wrote one last sleep deprived reply simply asking if the whole thing was a joke.

Is this a joke? Do you understand what a supervisor is? I never applied the promo code, you did. The only promo code that should have been applied to my account was the free ride. You applied a promo that I didn’t ask for and now are overcharging me because of it. And now I have had to email 6 times and each time you reply with a copy/paste job instead of escalating. Please send this to a supervisor.

This was it! Certainly they couldn’t just ignore my sixth plea to have this simple issue fixed. I had confidence that I was turning the definition of insanity (doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results) upside down. I was the one who was going to overcome. Then they replied.

Thanks for writing in, happy to assist.

I apologize for the trouble here.

Unfortunately, we will not be able to make any adjustments to your trip at this time.

The last code entered will be the first to apply. If you’re holding on to a particular code for a specific trip, you should enter it right before you take that trip.

No need to worry, I noticed that you currently have multiple promotions on your account which could be used for future trips. Some of these promotions were automatically added while others were manually added.

I then gave up. I probably should have done that 5 emails ago, but oh well. 🙂

Do you have any horrible customer service stories from Uber or other companies? Feel free to share them in the comments.


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21 COMMENTS

  1. Shaw, I used to get quick, personal replies that not only quickly fixed issues but gave me ride credits as well. Lately, nope. Uber(corporate) sucks. The drivers are generally good, however.

  2. Does the promo also over ride your AMEX $15 monthly credits? Above and beyond Ubers mistake of apply 50% off and charging $10. Did the $10 charge apply to AMEX credit or charge your Credit Card?
    Hopefully the AMEX credit is applied as a gift card credit and not as a Promo which your only aloud to use 1.

  3. I agree, disputed with credit card company, obviously the email chain alone is a proof where they applied the code without your knowledge. Probably have gotten a free ride 🙂

  4. That is really nuts…and really a sad state of all of our electronica!
    i think the credit card dispute is a great idea

  5. Did you use the 50% off promo for any other rides? You should be able to get them to cave. If you used that promo for other rides… then customer service is not being out of line here. It is standard that Uber only applies the one promo (the last one added to your account) per ride. Generally, if I want to use a particular coupon first I’ll use it and wait to apply a coupon to the account until after I’ve used the first one. If Uber auto applies a coupon and I’d rather use a previous promo, I usually message them to remove the promo they added on so I can use the previous promo.

    ALso not sure the $10 is worth this rant!

  6. bro. what you experienced is NO different than long ago. sounds like u had luck in the past and noticed a “change” in customer service. but they have ALWAYS sucked for me. offshore idiots. ESPECIALLY Uber Eats. I cant tell you how stupid front line first level support is. Its not just copy/paste of script. It literally IQ -100 type of crap. I have been so damn pissed so many damn times with their BS. they dont answer shit. you say ABC and they answer XYZ w/ “thank you for the feedback, we will try to improve for next time. take care for now.” fuk that.

    now, i just go STRAIGHT to twitter and publicly complain all the time. their Twitter is staffed with some smart USA people. I am not 100% sure but their communication skills is very different and they handle shit ASAP like no other. go try twitter. i already know u use twitter CSR a lot, but with Uber its a REQUIREMENT.

    good luck man!

  7. I also felt the same way dealing with the Citi Prestige help desk. After your post about their 100k offer I tried to have it matched. First they replied with a cookie cut reply they don’t have a 100k offer. Then I replied with the link and they came back with same cookie cut saying my card is not eligible. I took a pic of my card and the card on the 100k offer they replied same formats with your account is not eligible. I then said my buddy with same card was able to get matched, yet another cookie reply your account it not eligible. I replied again with same your account is not eligible response reworded. I tried a final time saying its not about my accout it all depends on the Customer service rep asking if they could please explain why my accou tllt is not eligible when I know for a fact other with same card are being matched. Their responce you guessed it your account is not eligible reworded another way without any reason why my account can not be matched.

    Then… I attemped to call the phone rep tells me they are unable to request I’m matched until I reach the $2000 spending limit. Once I reach it call us again and we will ask that I’m matched but can not guarantee it will be matched.
    OMG!! are you kidding me I gave up after that.

  8. Yes! Thank you for posting this over the past two days had the same poor and scripted experience with uber eats. I’m moving to delete my account. Imagine if we had real problems! Let’s not support this kind of junk.

  9. Thanks for posting this. Uber customer service is horrid. I suspect it is more than just copy and paste by humans. It is possible that bots are searching for key words / phrases in an incoming message and then spit out boiler plate languages. I would tweet Uber or call your credit card company.

  10. uber customer service certainly has gotten worse in my experience as well.
    On a trip from San Francisco to the suburbs, an uber diver didn’t end the trip, but drove half the way back to the city, charging me all along.
    When I disputed the charge, including the map that showed the “round trip”, they kept ignoring what I was writing, continuing to claim that the trip was “within the estimate” I received.
    When I threatened to dispute the charge with my credit card company and to come after them for allowing fraud by drivers, they issued a credit for the partial amount in question…
    no supervisor ever touched the issue…
    I’ve run customer service for many years and this is not an individual staff issue, this is directed top-down behavior and a systemic customer service issue!

  11. My issue was with a driver. tried a few times to “chat” with their customer service but all I got was scripted answers. With that, I know nothing will be done to help me or help the service.

    My decision was to delete uber app

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