Uber driver charged £561 for two drop-offs at Newcastle Airport

Trevor Storey was shocked to find out he had been charged more than £500 for two drop offs at Newcastle Airport. Credit: NCJ Media

A taxi driver was shocked to discover he had been charged more than £500 for two airport drop offs.

Trevor Storey was charged £253 instead of £4 when he dropped a customer off at Newcastle International Airport on 14 April.

The machine did not issue a receipt and the 63-year-old failed to notice the eye-watering charge.

It was not until he was charged £308 just days later and the transaction was flagged by his bank that he realised there was an issue.

Mr Storey, from South West Denton, contacted the airport who said his exit had been missed on two occasions and resulted in the high fee.

Mr Storey discovered the error when his bank contacted him. Credit: NCJ Media

Airport bosses have said there are occasions when the automatic number plate recognition systems cannot read a vehicle's registration plate, which can include poor weather or number plate inconsistencies.

Mr Storey said: "I work for Uber and everything is done by card, I don't handle any cash. I swiped my card and they don't give a receipt a lot of the time.

"The first time it was £253, then on April 19 I dropped someone off and Uber gave me another job at the airport so I swiped my card again.

"I got a receipt but just assumed it would be for £4. But when I finished I was contacted by my bank and there was a new transaction for £308 and I looked and I did have a charge.

"I phoned the bank and explained what had happened, but they said they couldn't stop the transaction and I would need to speak to the airport. When I was speaking to the guy on the phone he said 'Do you realise they did the same to you on April 14 and took £253'."

Mr Storey, who has been a taxi driver for 25 years, contacted the airport and was quickly refunded.

"They said my exit had been missed on two occasions," he said. "The woman was very quick to arrange for the money to be refunded."

He fears it could be happening to others who are unaware and wants people to know there could be an issue. He said: "I do my banking once a month so it would have come to light then. But imagine the amount of people this could happen to and they wouldn't realise.

"It could have been someone's last pound that they took and left them with nothing, if they had bills to pay. It would cause a lot of hassle, stress and anxiety. The airport won't get in touch with people to say they have been overcharged."

A spokeswoman for Newcastle International Airport said errors like this are not specific to their car park but present at all car parks that use ANPR systems.

She added: "As with all automatic number plate recognition systems, occasionally a vehicle's registration plate cannot be read - this is often due to poor weather or number plate inconsistencies.

"In this case, the system traced the previous time of entry to the car park to determine the charge.

"Should an incorrect payment amount display on the barrier, we advise passengers to use the intercom to contact a member of the car parking team who will be more than happy to assist."

Have you heard our new podcast Talking Politics? Every week Tom, Robert and Anushka dig into the biggest issues dominating the political agenda…