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You may want to rethink using Uber this Mardi Gras weekend

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ST. LOUIS (KTVI) - Emily Helling grabs her beads for the Mardi Gras party in Soulard this weekend. Her initial plans included taking an Uber home.

“That was our plan,” Helling said.

Those plans might be changing now because taking an Uber could be pricier than usual this weekend. The popular share riding app Uber announced surge pricing for the event. It suggested ways to avoid the highest fares on its website: “Head to the festivities early or catch a ride after the parades have come and gone.”

St. Louis Uber rider Ryan Dist has seen fares in the hundreds of dollars during peak travel times, when there just aren’t enough drivers to handle the load.

“In my experience, there have been some times where there have been some outrageous offers in terms of drivers,” Dist said.

He always looks for an estimate before selecting a ride.

“You see it on the car (in the app) before you go,” Dist said.

Helling’s boyfriend learned that the hard way.

“My boyfriend took an Uber from downtown back to our house in Florissant, so not very far, and woke up the next morning and (the bill) was like $120,” Helling said.

Uber suggests asking to be dropped off at Russell Boulevard and Gravois Avenue. It’ll only pickup on Shenandoah Avenue between 9th and 13th streets.

If you decide Uber isn’t for you, Metro will have a special shuttle service to the parade. Between 9 a.m. and 11 p.m., shuttle buses will be available between Soulard and the Civic Center Metro Link Station at Spruce and 14th streets. It’ll run every 15 minutes.