Leeds Festival Uber drivers 'demanding £100 in cash for £26 journeys' says disgusted festivalgoer

Uber drivers working at Leeds Festival have been accused of inflating fares and demanding cash payments in order to take people home.
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One festivalgoer detailed what they had witnessed on Saturday night at a dedicated pick-up spot, saying they were “absolutely disgusted”.

Posting anonymously in a Leeds Festival 2022 group on Facebook, they said there had been at least 15 to 20 Uber cars there but nobody was accepting rides through the app.

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After trying for an hour to make a booking, they said they began asking drivers if they were waiting for a customer.

Uber is an official transportation partner for Leeds Festival. Picture: Laura Dale/PA WireUber is an official transportation partner for Leeds Festival. Picture: Laura Dale/PA Wire
Uber is an official transportation partner for Leeds Festival. Picture: Laura Dale/PA Wire

They said: “It turns out they were just waiting for people to make them cash offers to get them home.

"We overheard one driver telling a group of four lads he wanted £100 cash to get them home when on the app it was a £26 journey.

"All of the drivers were just stood about having cigs and talking whilst there were young people freezing, crying, calling their parents, saying their phones were going to die and begging for help.”

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One driver reportedly blamed it on the queues of traffic, saying they could not work for the fares quoted by the app as it would be too low.

But the festivalgoer said that when they eventually got accepted after two hours, they discovered taxis had a separate direct exit out of the site at Bramham Park.

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They said their own journey came in at £33 but they had heard drivers asking for “at least triple that for journeys not much longer than ours”.

They added: “We eventually got home at 2am and honestly it completely ruined what had been an otherwise great day.

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“Not only is this frustrating, it is unsafe, it is unfair and for Festival Republic to allow this is quite frankly disgusting.”

A spokesperson for Uber, an official transportation partner for the festival, said: “What has been described is unacceptable.

"All private-hire trips in the UK must be pre-booked – Uber has a zero tolerance policy and any driver found picking up unbooked trips or street hails will permanently lose access to the app."

They said the company reports any incidents of plying for hire to the council and drivers risk having their private hire licence taken away.

Festival Republic has been invited to comment.

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