The chances of an Uber passenger puking in your car is a very rare sight to behold. In over 1,000 rides with Uber, only one time did somebody actually get too sick in my car.
Though there were a few times where I had to pull over for people, they were well aware something was coming up their throat and gave me ample time to pull over.
Today, I wanted to just tell you the story of the one time an Uber passenger puked inside my car.
It was right before midnight: I was in Berkeley shuffling around the streets picking up and dropping off passengers, when I received an Uberpool request from a bar close by.
After a few minutes of driving, I parked in front of the bar and waited for my passenger to arrive. He was the first of two pick ups I was assigned to do.
He gets in alright, but you could tell he had quite a bit to drink from the way he presented himself.
Good thing was, he at least was trying to stay hydrated as he was drinking a bottle of water.
A friend of his walked up to my window and told me he was only getting dropped off down the road and explains that my passenger drank a bit but should be good to make it home.
So in my mind I’m thinking: No big deal, he won’t be in my car too long and he did seem coherent and aware of what was going on even though he was obviously drunk.
I started the trip and turned the corner on my way to pick up my second passenger. Not even two minutes later, I pull up to this stop sign.
As my car comes to a halt, I hear this little burp/belch sounding noise come from the rear.
I turn my head, and there’s the Uber passenger trying to puke into the water bottle he was holding. Problem was, the hole wasn’t big enough for all of the projectiles coming out of his mouth.
I yell and I tell him to open the door and puke outside(in a pissed of manner).
But at this point, he wasn’t paying attention to anything else and kept trying to throw up in the water bottle.
Even after he finally opened the door, and started yacking outside, all he did was lean out of the car instead of completely getting out.
As the first passenger was throwing up his dinner on the side of the road, the second one called to see which direction I was coming from to pick him up.
I told him that the first guy just vomited in my vehicle and that he’s going to have to request a new Uber driver.
He called the guy ” A F**king moron”(which was how I felt) and we ended the conversation at that.
I was ready to clean up the mess and start wiping things down before I even dropped off the passenger but then decided against it.
As I was hoping for some kind of compensation from Uber for this terrible experience, I realized I would probably need proof.
I dropped the guy off at the destination: He got out, I went offline on the Uber app, and proceeded to take pictures of the disgusting mess.
There was vomit on the door, the floor, and the seat. He drank some kind of red or purple drink as that was the color of the fluids sinking into my seat.
Because my night ended early, I didn’t really want to go home until I knew I was getting paid.
So, I went into my trip history, clicked on my most recent trip, Clicked on Rider Feedback, and requested a cleaning fee from Uber at the same spot I dropped the passenger off.
After explaining the mess and uploading photos to show it actually happened, Uber went ahead and charged the passenger a $150 cleaning fee for the vomit as I finished wiping down the mess.
What was originally going to cost the passenger about $10 for the ride ended up costing them closer to $160 for a ride that was less than 5 minutes to get from point A to point B if the passenger didn’t throw up in my car and made me stop for a few minutes.
Sad thing about the whole situation is the passenger didn’t even make it to the right destination.
After I dropped him off, He walked up and down the block trying to get into everybody’s apartment buildings.
After walking up and down the street for a half hour, he walked up to me like nothing happened and said that I brought him to the wrong destination.
I told him he was on his own since I have to clean up his vomit. He walked away without ever actually apologizing about the whole ordeal even though he eventually sobered up while I was still in the vicinity.
This made me not feel so bad about charging the dude $150 for the mess he caused. I mean, I am trying to run a business here.
After wiping down the vomit as much as I could and confirming with Uber the passenger was getting charged a cleaning fee, I drove home.
Once I got there, my friend helped me clean up the rest of the mess with his soap vacuum (not sure the actual the name).
I managed to get the stain completely out without actually having to pay for a professional cleaning, which was great.
Even though I got paid $150 for the passenger vomiting in my vehicle, and it seems like a lot, the cleaning fee didn’t actually pay for the money I lost.
I was in the middle of my shift trying to get Uber’s guaranteed hours and power driver bonuses. I would’ve worked another 3-4 hours had no passenger vomited in my car.
What was suppose to be a $400 night for me ended up being $250 with the cleaning fee and my other rides. Had I gotten my car professionally cleaned, I would’ve lost up to $300 because of that one passenger.
Luckily, I managed to clean up the puke without a professional service to help save me some money.
If there was one thing that I should probably be thankful for about this whole situation, was the fact the first passenger picked up was the drunk sick guy.
Had he been the second person and vomited right next to the other passenger this might’ve been a worse nightmare.
When I told the second passenger that I won’t be picking him up, he definitely understood. But he sounded like he would’ve been a pretty pissed off dude if he was in the vehicle at the time the volcano within the drunk passenger erupted.
This is why you should always either keep some trash bags or emesis bags in your car for the drunk passengers.
You never know when they can be useful. If I had had them at the time of the incident, the bags would’ve paid for themselves with the puker that I had.
Be prepared when you are driving for Uber.
For the Uber passenger’s that get upset about these cleaning fees and try to dispute them, please understand everybody’s trying to make a living. You take away from that arguing a charge for something that you did and agreed to in the terms.
Show some respect and accept the consequence. Like I said, Even with the cleaning fee I still lost about $150 in wages.
How was everyone else’s experience with an Uber passenger vomiting in your vehicle?