Although taxi drivers in Los Angeles are not allowed to hike fares during peak demand, no similar rules apply to Uber and Lyft.
Uber tweeted several times in the run-up to New Year's Eve, encouraging riders to split the cost with friends and run fare estimators in advance.
"Surge pricing shouldn't be a surprise!" the company said on its blog.
The company released stats on Friday noting that 84% of all U.S. trips between 5 p.m. and 5 a.m. were tallied at less than three times surge pricing. And 60% of trips during that time were regular price, with no surge increases.
Despite those admonitions -- and several news stories that included tips to avoid big Uber tabs -- the post-midnight outrage arrived like clockwork.
Not everyone was sympathetic to passengers who shelled out big bucks for rides home on New Year's Eve.
And finally, some suggestions for next year:
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