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Uber ride costs woman $362 on Halloween night

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Posted at 1:07 PM, Nov 03, 2014
and last updated 2014-11-04 09:49:43-05

For Gabrielle Wathen, the scariest part of Halloween was looking at her credit card statement the next morning.

The 26-year-old was shocked to find she'd been charged $362 for an Uber cab ride — despite only taking a 20-minute trip.

Wathen woke up on Nov. 1 — her birthday — to find she had been charged the ridiculous amount after taking an Uber cab ride the previous night. So how did the cash-strapped young lady cover the fare? She crowdfunded it, of course.

Wathen passed her hat to the users of GoFundMe.com, writing, "My rent is $450 and I can no longer pay it today due to this completely outrageous charge ... I feel taken advantage of and cheated by the Uber name."

Users felt bad for Wathen, with The Daily Dot reporting that her page raised over five-hundred dollars in just twelve hours. Her jacked-up rate happened due to a surge in use that made the ride cost nine times the usual price.

An Uber spokesperson commented that a post to its blog last week indicated that prices would likely be surging during Halloween weekend in Baltimore. They also stated Wathen would have been notified of the high price before using the service. 

"Uber ensures a safe, reliable ride, wherever and whenever, and dynamic pricing allows us to remain the reliable choice, even on the busiest nights of the year. Our in-app features ensure dynamic pricing is repeatedly communicated and approved before any trip is confirmed," an Uber spokesperson wrote.

Clint Davis is a writer for the E.W. Scripps National Desk. Follow him on Twitter @MrClintDavis.