Uber ride-share program.
RideShare,  Transportation

What Happened When I Left My Phone in an Uber Car

Saturday night I did something that I never expected to do, and was petrified. Like every other time, I reserved an Uber to get home. It was a little past 8pm, and there was no way I was taking a bus home.


Uber Is Cheaper Than Taxis And Much Faster Than Public Transportation

As I’ve stated in an earlier post, “Public Transportation is the Heart of Urban Commuting“ – but can be very time-consuming as I’ve explained in my post, Does the RTS Transit Center Solve the Rochester, New York Transportation Problem?


Preferably, I’d choose my folding bike over every other type of transportation. Not only is it fast, but it’s the most affordable. There was only one problem though.


It was a very rainy day, so riding my folding bicycle was completely out of the question. Yes, it has fenders to keep me clean and dry, but does nothing against pouring rain.


There was no other choice but to go with plan B, which involved Uber. Plus, the Uber ride was slightly cheaper for some odd reason. Not that I’m complaining.


My Uber Ride Arrived Within 1 Minute After Reserving

Tracking the arrival time, Uber said my ride was only one minute away. And it was totally right.


My Uber ride pulled up, and the driver greeted me in a very friendly way, by my name. That was a relief, because I always wonder if it’s an actual Uber driver. Maybe I’m still getting used to the fact that taxis are the outdated mode of transportation.


I’m very happy that Uber, among other ride-share programs, are finally in the area. For commuters who don’t own cars, this is a major convenience. Plus a lot cheaper.


Many years ago, I took a taxi from the airport to home, and it cost a whopping $37 dollars to go 8.4 miles. Usually, I’d take a bus from the airport, but we were traveling all day and very tired. We had no more energy or patience left.


Uber As A Transportation Trend is Not Going to End Anytime Soon

Uber being the preferred way to commute over taxis, is a trend I don’t see ending anytime soon. In fact, it’s only going to grow.


Most Uber drivers already have full-time jobs, and like that they have the flexibility to work the days and hours they prefer.


My Uber Ride Home Was Quiet And Productive

On the way home, my Uber driver wasn’t very talkative, but to be fair, neither was I.

I was very tired from a restless night of no sleep, and I hadn’t had a pleasant day.


All I wanted to do was go home. The sooner the better. During the ride, my mind was drifting as I was texting and checking emails on my cell phone.


When I got through with both of those tasks, I checked my Google Adsense out of curiosity.  Every month my Google Adsense earnings have increased slowly, but gradually getting there.


As we pulled up in front of the house, I felt a huge sigh of relief. The thought of taking a shower, getting something to eat, and laying in my blankets with the heat vent blowing into them, was like heaven.


My night was over even before I got into the house. I told the Uber driver that he didn’t have to pull into the driveway, and that I’d just hop out.


With a huge smile on my face and happy feelings flowing through my body, I prepared for my relaxing evening. I removed my Adidas Sackpack . Hung my coat. And proceeded to empty my pockets.


I put my Wallet and hand sanitizer away, and just like clockwork, attempted to pull my cell phone out to charge it.


Somehow I Lost My Phone While Riding Uber, And The Panic Was Unbearable

That’s when the strangest thing happened. My pocket was empty, with no sign of a cell phone. At first I thought that I laid it down somewhere, so I carefully looked all over for it.


Not having any success, I thought maybe I left it outside on the railing while opening the door. Again, I ended up empty-handed.


At this point, panic started to set in. Hoping that I didn’t accidentally leave it in the Uber, I went outside to see if I dropped it on my way in.


Not seeing it anywhere, fear replaced happy-to-be-home feelings. I rely on my cell phone for everything. Without it, I would be completely lost. My emails, important phone numbers, and tools to run this blog are all connected to it.


Panic set in, with thoughts of never seeing my precious cell phone again. I immediately turned my Wi-Fi on and tried to log into my iTouch.


Unfortunately, the Wi-Fi was taking forever to start sending a signal. The longer it took to start working, the more I began to panic. After resetting a few times, and yelling at it, it finally began to work.


Contacting Uber Was Exhausting And Difficult

My first attempt at contacting Uber was to try to call them. The problem is that they don’t list a phone number on their website.


My second attempt was trying to download the app on my iTouch, but Uber sends a text to your phone. This text has a code that you have to enter to download the app onto a second device.


It was about an hour later when my sweetheart finally made contacting Uber possible. I was a total mess and about to have a meltdown, if I hadn’t already.


On the receipt, that Uber sent to my email, theres a section that says track it down. All I had to do was click on it. The next section asked for me to sign in with my email, and a number for the driver to call. I provided my home number, and immediately I got a call from the Uber driver.

Uber receipt.
Uber receipt.


On the website, I found the section that allows you to Contact Uber, but it’s a much slower process. They ask for your email. A number to contact you at. And detailed information about your ride.


I included the information from Uber’s website below, for those who use Uber on a daily basis. Not in a million years did I ever think I’d leave my cell phone behind, but I guess it happens to the best of us.

Call the driver asap on App or Web. Note a $15 will be charged.

The best way to retrieve an item you may have left in a vehicle is to call the driver. Here’s how:

In App 

1. In an Uber App, open the menu by clicking on the icon at top right.

2. Tap “Your Trips” to bring up the history.

3. Find the ride where you lost your item. Tap on it to bring up the Trip Details.

4. Scrolldown and tap on “I lost an item.”

On a website (In case you left your phone)

1. Go to this webpage – Uber – Contact Driver.

2. Scroll down and enter the phone number you would like to be contacted.  If it’s your phone that’s lost, enter a friend’s phone number.

3. Uber will call the number you enter to connect you directly with your driver

If your driver picks up and confirms that your item has been found, coordinate a mutually convenient time and place to meet for its return to you.

If your driver doesn’t pick up, leave a detailed voicemail describing your item and the best way to contact you.

Be considerate that your driver’s personal schedule will be affected by taking time out to return your item to you.  A $15 fee (in US) is charged to your account once your lost item is returned. Drivers are independent contractors and this is to compensate them for their time. The entire fee is passed on to the driver.


Thankfully I Got My Phone Back, But Uber Should Make It Much Easier To Contact The Drivers

Uber is an amazing ride-share program that is a blessing for those who don’t own a car. The app is easy to use and works flawlessly most of the time. Whenever I reserve an Uber ride, the app tells me how far away the driver is, and how long it will be before arrival. For the preceding reasons, I give Uber a huge high-five.


What I don’t like about Uber is that they assume you’ll always have your phone when contacting them. This would be perfectly fine if you left an item in the vehicle, such as a coat or umbrella.


The problem was that I didn’t have my cell phone, and was worried that someone might find my phone and steal it before I contacted the driver.


I understand that Uber needs to protect their drivers, and can’t include their phone numbers on the receipts. But there should be an easy way to click on a tab and instantly call the driver.


Or if this isn’t possible, at least have a number listed on the receipt so that customers can call Uber for immediate help.


The last resort would be providing a link that makes it easier to find the directions I provided above.


The Uber Driver Brought My Phone Back As Promised, And I Was Finally Able To Relax

Within a half hour, I had my phone and was able to settle down for the night. I consider myself extremely fortunate that nobody found my phone and stole it. You wouldn’t believe how many times I blurted out loud about how I’d never leave my phone somewhere.


Yet, there I was having a panic attack, and popping blood vessels. Lost items and phones are left in Uber ride-shares more often than you can imagine. I’m usually very organized and don’t leave things behind, which I recommend highly.


But if you ever do leave your phone in an Uber like I did, make sure you have the volume up high so that you can call your phone, and get the driver’s attention.


If I had done so, I could have caught the driver before he got too far, and saved myself a lot of time and worry.


Despite this unfortunate event, my overall experience with Uber has been positive. All the drivers have been very friendly and professional, and really like what they do.


Do You Have Any Uber Stories Of Your Own? Let Me Know….


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