My Uber Officemax MS Joyride & A Word of Caution About Using Uber in a Foreign Country

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uber currency foreign country

Green Bay Uber Joyride

On Saturday the news broke about Officemax getting $500 Visa and Mastercard gift cards. Since I was traveling, there wasn’t much I could do, however I forged a plan. I was arriving in Green Bay on Sunday morning and discovered there were two Officemax locations in the area. Better yet, I had a little time to spare between landing in Green Bay and when I needed to go to the stadium for the Packers game.

After landing at the surprisingly nice airport in Green Bay, I decided to call an Uber. My plan was to have the Uber driver take me to the two Officemax stores before dropping me at the Hyatt. For some reason my app said I had a couple of credits good for up to $150. While I know the normal referral is $20, I figured they must have been running a promo. Lyft does this quite a lot and the referral amounts vary with them.

On To Officemax We Go

uber currency foreign country
We took the long way to the Hyatt!

After explaining the situation, my Uber driver agreed to my plan and we drove to the first Officemax and struck out. Their gift card racks were barren and I couldn’t even get the employees to search for more. On to the second Officemax we went and thankfully I had better luck. I was able to purchase 7 X $500 Visa cards! This is why I always take an Ink card with me while traveling.

Houston We Have a Problem

From the second Officemax we headed to the Hyatt where the driver and I parted ways. When I received the receipt I was surprised to see only a $20 credit was applied to the $54 ride. What happened to my $150? Well, I emailed Uber support and they told me that I don’t have $150 credits, I have $150 Mexican Peso credits. What?!? Apparently somehow they switched my account to Mexican Pesos when I was in Mexico City and I earned credits in that currency?!?

First off, 150 MEX is only about $9 which stinks. Second, I never did anything to my account so I don’t know how it was switched. Third, the credit shows in my account as $150 the same way USD credits show. How am I supposed to know that it is in pesos?

Dealing with Uber Support

It took a couple of back and forths with Uber for them to see the issue. They said my account clearly shows in the profile that I earn MEX. I explained that I never go to my profile and sent them a screenshot of the only screen I use, the payment screen. It showed my $150 credit without the word MEX anywhere to be seen. Had I known, I would have simply broken up my rides to use all 3 three of my credits.

Thankfully Uber customer service was able to help. They have now supposedly fixed my account so that I once again spend and earn dollars, but more importantly they applied other credits to the ride. If I had to end up paying $34 for the Officemax side trip it would have still been worth it, however that definitely would have cut into my “profits”!


If you use Uber in a foreign country, it is probably wise to check your account when you return to make sure the currency and home country hasn’t been changed. I’m not sure how this happened honestly, but am glad that Uber’s customer service helped and that we were able to come to a decent resolution.

Shawn Coomer
Since 2007 Shawn Coomer has been circling the globe with his family for pennies on the dollar. He uses that first-hand knowledge and experience to teach others how to achieve their travel dreams for the least amount of money possible.

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  1. This is a bloggers only problem. I’ve long since spent any referral credits and I couldn’t think of a single person in my life who hasn’t yet tried Uber except for my grandma who has no phone

  2. Biggest caution with Uber in foreign countries: they have limits within the city where they can go. Personal experience: I was in India and used Uber to take my Dad from hospital to home- a ride of about 10 miles. We were dumped on the side of the road at night about 7 miles into the ride while I was frantically looking for another taxi. Apparently, our house(in the city) was beyond Uber’s operating limits. My dad just had an operation and had difficulty walking. No concerns, Uber cars would not go beyond the limit which is posted only on obscure sites. Mind you, I entered the destination address even before I hailed uber. But, there was no warning of such a limit. I contacted local Uber that night. There was no response! Contacted @Uber, there was no response.

    • Wow! I have generally had good experiences with Uber’s customer service, but haven’t tried India. I do agree if you put in the destination at the beginning then they should have given you the ride the whole way.


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