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Uber driver's 'weird' refusal of Aussie news reporter: 'Haven't heard of that'

The broadcaster shared she was 'curious' why her Uber driver refused to take her to her destination after spotting something in her hand.

A Melbourne news reporter has recalled the "weird and strange" moment an Uber driver refused her journey, speeding off as the broadcaster questioned his decision not to take her.

Speaking to Dee Dee Dunleavy on 3AW radio on Monday, Nine News Melbourne's Jo Hall shared she was heading to a friend's birthday dinner on Sunday evening and "had her arms full" as she approached the waiting car.

"I had a pot plant as a gift, I had a candle and I had a bottle of champagne in a box," the 64-year-old told the radio host, before adding, "I was struggling a bit".

Left: The Uber logo can be seen on a sticker stuck against a car windshield. Right: Jo Hall smiles to the camera, wearing black sunglasses and a navy dress.
The Uber driver reportedly refused Jo Hall the service after spotting the champagne bottle in her hand. Source: AAP and Twitter

Despite initially believing the driver was rolling down his window to offer assistance, he instead asked if she was in possession of alcohol, to which she confirmed she was, with the broadcaster left "surprised" by his response.

"We don’t take people carrying alcohol," the man said flatly. Hall pointed out it was a closed box and was a gift, asking the driver if that was an Uber policy or his own policy, and saying "she hadn't heard of that before". The man repeated "we don't take them", and when Hall again tried to ask why he just drove off.

With a second Uber arriving within minutes of the incident, that driver confirmed what had occurred was "wrong" and seemed to be a decision based off the driver's own discretion rather than a policy set by Uber.

Reason for Uber refusal unknown

Ms Hall joked the driver must have "not liked the look of me" and shared she had not experienced a situation with Uber like that before.

After the radio host encouraged Hall to provide details of the driver to Uber so they could investigate further, she explained she could no longer see his details on her Uber app and admitted she didn't want to make a "massive deal" out of it, she simply hoped for an explanation.

"I'd like to know what the reason was," she said.

According to Uber's Community Guidelines, ‌open‌ ‌containers‌ ‌of‌ ‌alcohol‌ ‌are not allowed. In Hall's case, a bottle of champagne still in a box would be acceptable.

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