RE: Uber Lagos Charges. No, It is Uber's Fault


#1

Dear Techcabal,

This is Uber’s fault!

http://techcabal.com/2016/01/08/those-crazy-uber-lagos-charges-are-not-ubers-fault

Up until yesterday, my dollar card was attached to my Uber account. I had to reserve the few dollars I had to pay for more important things. So I decided to switch over to my Naira Master Card and that’s when I noticed this nonsense. Uber sent me a receipt in Naira using official CBN rate (199), then charged my Naira MasterCard in dollars, and my bank used a rate of 270, that’s a whooping 35% difference.

Why do I think this is Uber’s fault? On their site, rates are displayed in Naira, there is no message on conversion rate or possible fluctuations in prices due to forex rates, receipts are sent in Naira, estimated costs are in Naira, then they go ahead to charge in dollars!

Many of us make payments for goods and services online in dollars, but that’s it, dollars. You quote dollars, I pay dollars. You quote Naira, then I should pay Naira.

Personally I’ve sworn off Uber. I am going back to those taxi men that have given me their numbers.


#2

hope their reps are listening to peoples outburst


#3

I just had this discussion with my sister yesterday. I still have my American Debit card connected to my Uber account and when I was in lagos, I got charged “International transaction fees” by Chase bank when I used Uber, at the time I was like ok that kind of makes sense, I am in Nigeria and Uber is charging in Naira, only to find out yesterday that Uber or the Nigerian banks also charges “International transaction fees” if you have a Nigerian bank connected to your account. This is appalling! and totally feels like someone is playing a fast one on us. What currency is Uber really charging in then? cause apparently it is neither Naira or Dollars. LOL


#4

Money in different swift codes, like a boss.


#5

@akamaozu LOL its statements like yours that halt change in this nation. LOL. We are here discussing the atrocities we are subjected to in this beautiful nation of ours and now you have side tracked the discussion to talk about the location of my banking swift codes why would you do such a thing?.. wait do you work for Uber?


#6

@adim86 What determines whether a transaction is international or not is not the currency, but the geographic location of the processor. Uber uses Braintree Payments, and the processor handling and acquiring Nigerian transactions resides in Europe.

@logbon72 that said, they may have as well passed the Naira value to the processor, who would take the currency and use the standard exchange rates to figure out how much to charge in dollars/euros/pounds. Your bank then assumes the responsibility for doing you in at that point because they need to settle an “international transaction” in hard currency.

I just tried to run a quick test on Amazon to show this

This is Amazon promising to charge in Naira, and showing me the exchange rate they used for conversion. Of course you can imagine what would happen when the banks get wind of the fact that I dare buy anything from outside the country that isn’t a farm equipment.

See, all this wouldn’t be a problem if the banks traded with its customers at the same exchange rate CBN is announcing to the world. By trying hard to maintain the rate at N199 to a dollar and market demands saying otherwise, this will continue to happen… across any service that attempts to display rates in your local currency but processes transactions using foreign processor.


#7

I have no clue how these things work, but can paystack be an uber payment option? Kenya has mpesa so it’s possible, right?


#8

Same thing happened when i boosted my listing on jiji.ng

I was shown my bill in Naira but I was actually charged in USD. Th difference was almost N2,000.


#9

Talk about domain expertise :raised_hands:


#10

Yes, Paystack can be an option. This would require them to maintain an account in Nigeria to collect the funds, and also expand their accounting system to accommodate for this.

Now, whether they would migrate their card details from Braintree to us and have their customer incur minuscule charges as their cards are being authorized on our platform, or have everyone setup their payment information all over again would be a decision they would have to make. Oh wait, the former would be impossible. PCI DSS requirements does not permit you to store CVV and that is required for authorization. Also, moving details across providers without informing their users might be in violation of provisions in their own ToC.

Well, all this is a big IF.


#11

This is very different on so many levels.

Amazon is not localised to Nigeria, you don’t have “Amazon Lagos”. This pricing is clearly an estimate and you have currency options available to you. You know for sure this is USD converted to NGN.

Uber’s rates are in NGN, it’s not converted, you’re not told a USD equivalent, in fact, I felt they had adjusted their prices in the midst of these fluctuations. Uber has an office in Lagos, which clearly means they are incorporated in Nigeria so when I do business with Uber Lagos, I just assume I am dealing with a Nigerian entity, so exchange rate should be the least of my worries. Like someone said on Twitter, this is the equivalent of paying you regular taxi man in dollars.

Imagine you had to reclaim money spent on Uber from an employer, and you’re asked to forward you receipt, how do you tell them the receipt is actually not the actual price you were charged? 35% is HUGE difference.


#12

Err, there is currently no payment platform that can process Uber transactions in Nigeria, or at least when they began. What you are saying in essence is that they shouldn’t have come since Interswitch doesn’t allow card not present transactions which is the core of their business.

We didn’t have this problem of disparity in cost as at this time last year, but now we do with CBN’s asinine policies, and yet you blame the foreign players. Come on.

You can test this yourself. Hook up to stripe’s API and try to charge your card 100 naira with the currency set to NGN and see what your bank charges you. Or are we saying foreign players should also come help us fix our fundamental problems like payments before they can play? Soon we’ll be asking Google maps to build their own road network so their traffic estimates can be accurate.


#13

I’m not dealing with CBN or Interswitch here, I’m dealing with a company called Uber. Companies face challenges. If I pay WhoGoHost or any other Nigerian hosting provider the stipulated amount in Naira, it’s not really my business how they source for Forex to make payments. Thing is, our contract is clear, I was told to pay X amount in Naira and I did.

The reason why you’re blaming me for blaming them is because you believe since I’m a techie, I’m supposed to understand. Honestly I don’t want to understand. All I know is I was asked to pay 1 Naira
and I was charged at 1.35 instead, and Uber doesn’t seem to care about that.


#14

I’m sorry for assuming you are a techie when I know you are a techie. We can argue that they could have communicated better…but that wasn’t your original point.


#15

Initial point


#16

In other news a certain bank confirmed that irrespective of the transaction currency you chose at the time of payment, they will apply their own conversion rate…

Meaning uber can tell u $5 = N1000 and you’ll see a 1500 debit on your account.

You should learn about something called direct currency conversion in banks…There’s a reason most of them blocked it (can lead to shortfalls).


#17

Dude you’re pushing it and grasping on straws now. This thread’s title clearly reads that the price difference is Uber’s fault and you went on to say it’s because they charged in dollars instead of Naira.

That’s a clear causality accusation, and not a communications one.

That’s the misconception I set out to correct.


#18

You’re nitpicking, it’s unnecessary. Should I have laid out my explanation for why I think it’s Uber’s fault in the topic?


#19

You know what, let’s blame all this on me misinterpreting the crux of your argument. I went on a tangent. Sorry.


#20

It takes a big man to apologize even when he feels the error isn’t on his part.

I’ll talk to @lordbanks and see if he can arrange a “big man” user title just for you.