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Uber will recoup additional costs for riders during the CTA shutdown; advocates say rising prices are ripping off drivers

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CHICAGO (CBS) – When the power goes out stopped the red, brown and purple CTA lines during Thursday morning rush hour many passengers turned to rideshare apps to get to work as soon as they got off the trains that had stopped.

But, as Sabrina Franza of CBS 2 reported, these passengers have faced tariffs that they believe are unfair as price spikes have forced passengers to pay big.

Thursday afternoon was good news from Uber, which said it was going to return the riders the extra money they paid.

But drivers, when prices rise, have to guess where exactly all this extra money goes.

The price spike jumped when Thursday’s letter “L” became large and everyone was left looking for Plan B.

One tweet showed a price of $ 55.90 for downtown travel from Belmont Red, Brown and Purple Line stations, and another – $ 59.96. CBS Chicago Digital Line producer Blake Tyson has noted that a three-mile drive from DuSable Lake Shore Drive on UberXL will cost $ 83.38.

“You, the passengers, are being torn off, and we, the drivers, are underpaid,” said Lenny Sanchez, co-founder of the Independent Drivers’ Guild.

Sanchez, himself a former driver who now advocates for drivers, explained how drastic pricing works for him and his colleagues.

In one case, a customer paid $ 34.94. Of these, the driver was reduced by $ 18.46 – about 45 percent. The driver’s reduction included a fixed fee of $ 7.24, but the customer didn’t just pay that fixed rate in addition to the regular fare. Rather, the customer is charged a multiplier based on the distance from which the driver does not benefit.

In other words, drivers do earn more money when there is a surge – when drivers are on the road, they see a map showing the fixed fee they will receive when they take the trip. But compared to what the customer pays, the driver’s payment is not nearly the percentage they received before.

“The driver literally earns $ 10 less than in the past, at the same rate,” Sanchez said.

Proponents like Sanchez are pushing for a resolution that would standardize prices so drivers see more profits.

“The bag is on the rise, because not only are we underpaid, but you guys, as passengers, are also being torn off,” Sanchez said.

There is currently one such resolution, but it has not yet been scheduled for consideration by the City Council committee since it was introduced in February.

Uber says once again that it was going to return to customers the difference in price from growth to normal prices. How they do it, we’ll see soon.

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